Inspired by a painting, a poem, Bach, Stravinsky, Schoenberg and the CERN Hadron Collider, Rambert’s exciting and innovative triple bill showed how choreographers can start from utterly different places.

Rambert has a scientist in residence (Professor Nicola S. Clayton), but it was artist Katie Paterson who took Mark Baldwin to CERN, where he found out about the properties of quarks. The Strange Charm of Mother Nature is a virtuoso dance piece in two movements; the first, to Stravinsky’s Dumbarton Oaks, gives us slow duets, set against dancers who ricochet across the stage like neutron stars; the second, to Bach’s third Brandenburg Concerto, bursts through space in a blaze of colour with spectacular spins and leaps, the embodiment of cosmic energy, yet strangely cool and scientific. (more…)

‘As this is my most varied and exciting score,’ declared Sir Arthur Bliss, ‘I am disappointed that it has fallen into oblivion.’ The celebrated British composer and former Master of the Queen’s Music expressed regret within the pages of his autobiography at the disappearance of Adam Zero from the permanent repertoire of The Sadler’s Wells Ballet. However, had Bliss been alive today, he would have revelled in the discovery that his finest ballet composition had served as the inspiration for a contemporary restaging by Sergei Vanaev at the Stadt Theater Bremerhaven, almost seven decades since the production’s 1946 premiere. As the curtain closes on the final performance of Adam Zero in Germany in June, it seems fitting to reflect on the creative lineage of this heritage work and – more significantly – Vanaev’s choreographic achievement in enlivening Bliss’s neglected score. (more…)