Overall it must be questioned whether ballet is the right medium for a biographical tribute. Ballet by the limits of its nature is only able to give a broad brushstroke, a stylized impression of what a person stood for. Details of historical context, complex personal stories and exploration of inner drive fall by the wayside; all questions you seek in a biographical treatment remain opaque. In “Frame by Frame” a new ballet for the National Ballet of Canada directed by Robert LePage and choreographed Guillaume Côté, ballet was interspersed with film and overlaid with interactive effects by Ex Machina, yet it remained a fragmentary picture of their subject, Norman McLaren.
Harrison James and Heather Ogden in “Frame by Frame.” Photograph by Karolina Kuras
The son of a painter and a set designer, director/choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot was, it seems, destined to have a life in the theater. Born and raised in Tours, in central France, in 1960, he studied dance and piano at the Conservatoire Nacional de Région de Tours before joining the Rosella Hightower International School of Dance in Cannes.Continue Reading
One would think that a dance inspired by the events of the January 6 insurrection—yes, a dance!—would not be the ideal stuff of theater, but the eight members of Laurie Sefton Creates (formerly Clairobscur Dance Company), succeeded in giving life to Sefton’s premiere “Herd. Person?”, while the dance, itself, was occasionally problematic.Continue Reading