Dance Birmingham Royal Ballet
Saturday 25 May 1996
The Ashton ballet was in a double-bill with Bintley's Carmina Burana. The choreography is in the shadow of Orff's monumental score - magnificently sung on Tuesday by Judith Howarth, Martyn Hill, Anthony Michaels Moore and the Royal Opera Chorus - but the dramatisation of the fall from grace of three trainee priests definitely has its moments. Michael O'Hare and the Kirov-trained Yuri Zhukov enact their brushes with deadly sin with power and conviction but it is Joseph Cipolla who steals the show. As he removes his trousers to reveal a gleaming white posing pouch there is a sudden rip of Velcro as Covent Garden collectively gets out its opera glasses. Admiring Cipolla's lean, muscled physique would be strictly Chippendales were it not that his body is the instrument of a fine artist. Every movement and gesture is thoroughly focused as his love for Catherine Batcheller lures him to damnation.
The season's other mixed bill opens with Balanchine's Theme and Variations. BRB have had the measure of this work since 1988, and they continue to dance it superbly. Kevin O'Hare handled the fiendish pirouettes and airborne solos with unstudied ease. The corps performed superbly and were equally undaunted by Agon, led by Monica Zamora and Joseph Cipolla.
Thursday's triple bill concluded with Bintley's Still Life at the Penguin Cafe. Although unashamedly crowd-pleasing, it is interesting to see the work again after enduring several seasons of the Royal Ballet's Tales of Beatrix Potter. Where Potter's animals are slavishly created with thick padding and furry suits, Bintley's are cunningly suggested by light masks and painted body stockings. Suddenly Penguin Cafe is looking a lot more interesting and so is the company that danced it.
In rep at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London WC2 (0171-304 4000) to 31 May
Life & Style blogs
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Alex Salmond has 'broken his word to the Scottish people' says Scottish Lib Dem leader
- 1 Planes go hybrid-electric in important step to greener flight
- 2 Antonio Martin shooting: Police and protesters clash over teenager's death just five miles from Ferguson, Missouri
- 3 British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
- 4 Hip hop is both racial and political, and for Iggy Azalea to suggest otherwise is insulting
- 5 Man hospitalised with pneumonia after downing eggnog at office Christmas party
£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This full service social media ...
£24000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are 'Changemakers in retail'...
Very Competitive: Austen Lloyd: Senior Conveyancer - South West We are see...
Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: DORSET MARKET TOWN - SENIOR PROPERTY SOLICITOR...