Following the success of the first Dance@TheGrange in 2018, multi award-winning choreographer Wayne McGregor CBE returns as Director of Dance to lead the programme for The Grange Festival’s 2019 season.
Set in the majestic atmosphere of the Grange Estate in Hampshire, the programme will include two nights of ballet and contemporary dance by some of the world’s most esteemed artists, including Wayne McGregor’s own Company Wayne McGregor, former Royal Ballet principal Alessandra Ferri, and Ballet Black.
After celebrating its 25th year in 2018, Company Wayne McGregor will be performing a new restaging of Wayne McGregor’s critically acclaimed work Outlier. Set to Thomas Adès’ 2005 violin concerto Concentric Paths, Outlier is inspired by the Bauhaus movement’s notions of minimalism and colour theory. McGregor has made over 30 works for the company, which tours his most experimental and ambitious new choreography across the UK and around the world. Company Wayne McGregor is Resident Company of Sadler’s Wells, and is part of Studio Wayne McGregor, the creative engine for all McGregor’s work.
Outlier will feature an exclusive performance by prima ballerina Alessandra Ferri, former principal dancer at the Royal Ballet and winner of the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance. For this performance only, Ferri will breathe in her famously free, sensual, and emotionally electrifying technique into McGregor’s work at the elegant 600-seat theatre at The Grange.
Concept and Choreography, and Set Design
Lighting & Set Design
Wayne McGregor CBE is a multi-award-winning British choreographer and director. He is Artistic Director of Studio Wayne McGregor, the creative engine of his life-long choreographic enquiry into thinking through and with the body. Studio Wayne McGregor encompasses his extensive creative collaborations across dance, film, music, visual art, technology and science; Company Wayne McGregor, his own touring company of dancers; and highly specialized learning and research programmes. Studio Wayne McGregor opened own newly created studio spaces at Here East in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in March 2017.
Wayne McGregor is also Resident Choreographer at The Royal Ballet, where his productions are acclaimed for their daring reconfiguring of classical language. He is Professor of Choreography at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance and has an Honorary Doctorate of Science from Plymouth University and an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from University of Leeds. He is part of the Circle of Cultural Fellows at King’s College London.
McGregor is regularly commissioned by and has works in the repertories of the most important ballet companies around the world, including Paris Opera Ballet, New York City Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet and San Francisco Ballet. He has choreographed for theatre, opera, film (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Fantastic Beasts, Sing, Mary Queen of Scots), music videos (Radiohead, Thom Yorke, The Chemical Brothers), fashion (Gareth Pugh at London Fashion Week, 2017), campaigns (Selfridges), TV (Brit Awards, 2015 & 16), and site specific performances (Big Dance Trafalgar Square, 2012).
McGregor’s work has earned him four Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards, two Time Out Awards, two South Bank Show Awards, two Olivier Awards, a prix Benois de la Danse and two Golden Mask Awards. In 2011 McGregor was awarded a CBE for Services to Dance.
English composer, conductor and pianist Thomas Adès was born in London and studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and King’s College, Cambridge. His first opera Powder her Face (1995) has been performed more than two hundred times worldwide.
Adès made his Royal Opera debut in 2004 conducting the world premiere of his second opera The Tempest. He has since returned to Covent Garden conduct The Rake’s Progress, a revival of The Tempest in 2007 and in 2017 his third opera, The Exterminating Angel, a co-commission between The Royal Opera, Salzburg Festival and the Metropolitan Opera, New York. His second opera, Powder her Face was performed at the Royal Opera House in 2008.
The Tempest has been seen in Strasbourg, Copenhagen, Sante Fe, Toronto, Frankfurt, Budapest, Luebeck and New York. The Metropolitan Opera’s recording of the opera with Deutsche Grammophon won the 2014 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording. His most performed orchestral work, Asyla, was commissioned by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra under Simon Rattle. Other works include America (New York Philharmonic), Polaris (New World Symphony) and Totentanz (BBC Symphony Orchestra, BBC Proms). Much of his music has been choreographed for ballet.
Adès was Music Director of Birmingham Contemporary Music Group 1998–2000, Artistic Director of Aldeburgh Festival 1999–2008, and in September 2016 becomes Boston Symphony Orchestra’s first Artistic Partner. He regularly conducts for orchestras such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, London Symphony Orchestra and Royal Concertgebouw, and there have been many international festivals dedicated to his music. Appearances as a pianist include recitals at Carnegie Hall and the Barbican. His many awards include the 2015 Sonning Prize and the 2000 Grawemeyer Award. He coaches piano and chamber music annually at the International Musicians Seminar.
Lucy Carter is the winner of the Knight of Illumination Award for Dance in 2008 for Chroma and 2015 for Woolf Works (The Royal Ballet). She is a close creative collaborator of Wayne McGregor, they have worked together for many years across a multitude of works for both Company Wayne McGregor and The Royal Ballet, where McGregor serves as Resident Choreographer. Her credits for work with McGregor include +/- Human (Company Wayne McGregor & The Royal Ballet); Tree of Codes (Manchester International Festival, Company Wayne McGregor & Paris Opera Ballet); Atomos, UNDANCE, FAR, Dyad 1909, Entity, Amu, AtaXia, Nemesis, Digit01 (Company Wayne McGregor); Multiverse, Obsidian Tear, Woolf Works, Tetractys: The Art of the Fugue, Raven Girl, Machina, Carbon Life, Live Fire Exercise, Limen, Infra, Chroma, Qualia, Nimbus (Royal Ballet, London); Borderlands (San Francisco Ballet); Dido and Aeneas and Acis and Galatea (Royal Opera/Royal Ballet, London); Outlier (New York City Ballet); Dyad 1929 (Australian Ballet); Kirikou and Karaba (musical); Alea Sands, L’Anatomie de la Sensation, Genus (Paris Opera Ballet); Skindex and Renature (Nederlands Dans Theater 1); 2Human (English National Ballet); Yantra and Nautilus (Stuttgart Ballet). Lucy’s work extends to Theatre and Opera including; The End of Longing (Playhouse Theatre) Medea, Blurred Lines and Emil and the Detectives (National Theatre), Husbands and Sons (National Theatre and Royal Exchange Manchester); La finta giardiniera (Glyndebourne) and Lohengrin (Welsh National Opera and Polish National Opera). Other credits include: No Body (Installation at Sadler’s Wells), FLUX (Schlossmediale Werdernberg) and the lighting design for Paloma Faith’s performance at the Brit Awards 2015 (choreographed by McGregor).
Costume designer Moritz Junge was born in Germany and studied at the Berlin University of the Arts and the Slade School of Fine Art. He won the Linbury Prize for stage design in 2001. Costume designs for ballet include McGregor’s Anatomie de la Sensation (Paris Opera Ballet), Dyad 1929 (Australian Ballet), Outlier (New York City Ballet), Kairos (Ballett Zürich) and Sunyata (Bayerisches Staatsballett, Munich).
Junge collaborates regularly Wayne McGregor, at The Royal Opera house on Chroma (2006), Infra (2008), Limen (2009), Live Fire Exercise (2011), Woolf Works (2015) and Multiverse (2016) for The Royal Ballet, and with Company Wayne McGregor on FAR, Atomos, Future Self, Azimuth, and Rain Room. Junge made his Royal Opera House debut in 2004 creating costume designs for the world premiere of Adès’s The Tempest. Credits since include Aida (2010) and Les Troyens (2012), directed by David McVicar, for The Royal Opera.
In theatre his work includes The Kitchen, Dido, Queen of Carthage and The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other(National Theatre) and All About My Mother (Old Vic). Opera work includes La Cenerentola (Glyndebourne Festival and Deutsche Oper Berlin), King Roger (Mainz), The Winter’s Tale and The Messiah (English National Opera), Un ballo in maschera and Adriana Lecouvreur (Freiburg), Rigoletto (Hanover), Die Zauberflöte (Lucerne), Macbeth(Konzert Theater Bern) and Béatrice et Bénédict (Theater an der Wien).
Junge’s other credits including designing the costumes for the London 2012 Paralympic Games Opening Ceremony.
Italian dancer Alessandra Ferri is a former Principal of The Royal Ballet. Ferri was born in Milan and trained first at La Scala Ballet School, Milan, followed by The Royal Ballet School. She entered the Company in 1980, promoted to Soloist in 1983 and to Principal in 1984 aged 19. She left the Company in 1985, returning in 2003 to dance Juliet (Romeo and Juliet) as a Guest Artist. She returned in 2015 as a Guest Artist to create a role in Wayne McGregor’s Woolf Works, for which she was awarded the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award for Best Female Dancer and a second Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance. With The Royal Ballet, she has performed key roles in Mayerling, Manon, L’Invitation au voyage, Valley of Shadows and Different Drummer. In 1985 she joined American Ballet Theatre on the invitation of Mikhail Baryshnikov and went on to form a famed dance partnership with Julio Bocca. She joined La Scala Ballet, Milan, as a guest principal in 1992, remaining with ABT as a guest principal.
Celebrating its 25th year in 2018, Company Wayne McGregor is Wayne McGregor’s ensemble of highly skilled dancers. Founded in 1993, this is the original instrument through which McGregor evolves his distinctive visual style, revealing the movement possibilities of the body in ever more precise degrees of articulation. McGregor has made over thirty works for the company and today it continues to be his laboratory for ambitious and experimental new choreography, touring his work across the UK and around the world. Company Wayne McGregor is Resident Company at Sadler’s Wells, London.
Dance@TheGrange will also welcome Cassa Pancho’s Ballet Black for the first time, who will perform Cathy Marston’s narrative ballet The Suit. Comprised of international dancers of black and Asian descent, Ballet Black was founded in 2001 by Pancho to diversify ballet through its constantly growing repertoire of over 45 originally commissioned ballets. Inspired by South African writer Can Themba’s short story of the same name, The Suit follows in Marston’s unique tradition of interpreting great literature into dance by stripping classic works to their core and re-imagining them for new audiences through classic and contemporary expression.
Ballet Black, Founder and Artistic Director
Cathy Marston is a choreographer, artistic director, Clore Cultural Leadership Fellow and Governor of The Place (London). After education in Cambridge, she spent two years at the Royal Ballet School, before launching a successful international career now spanning over twenty years. Cathy’s great gift is to join artistic dots, creating form for stories, emotions and ideas. She inherited a passion for literature from her English-teacher parents. For Cathy, stories inform dance.
As Associate Artist of the Royal Opera House for five years, she created a critically acclaimed interpretation of Ibsen’s Ghosts. During her six year tenure in Switzerland directing the Bern Ballett, her British ‘respect for the playwright’ became influenced by the ideas of German theatre and ‘Director’s Theatre’, resulting in her unique, hybrid signature. Lending new perspectives to old narratives in her version of Bronte’s Jane Eyre, Chekov’s Three Sisters, Narbokov’s Lolita, or in her historically-inspired Witch-hunt: all are danced-stories stripped back to their essence and displaying high quality technique and unflinching expressive integrity.
Passionate about opening original ideas to new audiences, Cathy crafts unexpected matches between classical and contemporary art forms. Commissioning a new score for soprano voice and female beatboxer is an instance where she happily combined her artistic vision with practical prowess – a great personal achievement for Cathy.
Cathy’s proudest moments include launching her charitable company, The Cathy Marston Project, rescuing Bern Ballett from threatened closure, as well as major creations for Danza Contemporanea de Cuba, Finnish National Ballet and Northern Ballet (and many more). With future collaborations planned in opera and theatre, further widening her portfolio of over fifty works performed in eleven countries, Cathy looks forward to continuing to charter new territory – both geographically and artistically.
Of Trinidadian and British parents, Cassa trained at the Royal Academy of Dance, gaining a degree in classical ballet from Durham University. Upon graduating in 2001, she founded Ballet Black in order to provide role models to young, aspiring black and Asian dancers. A year later, she opened the BB Junior School in Shepherd’s Bush. Cassa is also a graduate of the 2009 National Theatre cultural leadership programme, Step Change. Since starting the Company, she has commissioned work from a wide range of choreographers, including Liam Scarlett, Richard Alston, Javier de Frutos, Annabelle Lopez- Ochoa, Shobana Jeyasingh, Henri Oguike, and Will Tuckett. Ballet Black won both the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Company in 2009 and Best Independent Company in 2012. Cassa was awarded an MBE in the 2013 New Year Honours List for Services to Classical Ballet and has served as a judge on the panels of both the Kenneth Macmillan Choreographic and BBC Young Dancer competitions. In 2015, Cassa was appointed a Patron of Central School of Ballet and in May 2016 became a vice president of The London Ballet Circle. In 2017, she joined the Ballet Now consortium in association with Birmingham Royal Ballet and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA). Also that year, Cassa, along with Senior Artist Cira Robinson, collaborated with renowned British ballet shoe manufacturer, Freed of London, to create two brand new pointe shoe colours to enable dancers of black descent to buy skin-tone pointe shoes ready-made. In 2018, Cassa was awarded the Freedom of the City of London. To date, she has commissioned 34 choreographers, to create over 46 new ballets for the Company. In both 2017 & 2018 Cassa was included in The Evening Standards The Progress 1000: London’s most influential people. She also teaches regularly at the BB Junior School in Shepherd’s Bush, West London.
Founded in 2001, Ballet Black is a modern ballet company, dedicated to diversifying classical ballet. The company is made up of eight international dancers of black and Asian descent, winner of the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award (Best Independent Company 2012 and a further nomination in 2014). Previous awards include for the Critic’s Circle Dance Europe Outstanding Company (2009) and a further nomination for Best Classical Female Dancer (2013). In July 2016 Ballet Black was the subject of a South Bank Show documentary with Melvyn Bragg, broadcast on Sky Arts (July 2016).
Ballet Black’s entirely original repertoire covers a broad spectrum of ballet, from classical work to contemporary pieces. They have built a varied repertoire from some of the country’s leading choreographers, including Arthur Pita, Henri Oguike, Javier de Frutos, Liam Scarlett, Shobana Jeyasingh, Martin Lawrance, Will Tuckett, Richard Alston, Christopher Marney and Christopher Hampson.
The company has performed extensively in the UK including: Barbican, Linbury Studio Theatre and Clore Studio Upstairs at the Royal Opera House, Hackney Empire, and extensive touring to, amongst others, Cambridge Arts Theatre, Exeter Northcott, Nottingham Playhouse, Wyvern Theatre Swindon, Winchester Theatre Royal and Watford Palace Theatre and several festivals including Canterbury Festival, Bristol Harbourside (Dance Village), Salisbury Festival, Bath International Dance Festival and Latitude, Suffolk. Internationally, the company has toured to Italy, Germany, Holland and Bermuda.
Matilda and Philemon are married and live in Sophiatown, a suburb of Johannesburg. One morning, Philemon gets up as ever, going through his morning ritual, preparing breakfast in bed for Matilda before heading off to catch the bus to work. No sooner is Philemon on his way, than Simon, Matilda’s lover, comes into the house.
At the bus stop, Philemon realises he has left his briefcase behind. He returns home. There he discovers Matilda in bed with another man. Simon jumps out of the window, leaving behind his suit. Matilda begs Philemon for forgiveness. He tells her to take care of the Suit, takes his briefcase and goes to work.
At dinner that evening, Philemon insists that the Suit sits down to dinner with them and that Matilda must treat it as an honoured guest. That night Matilda cannot sleep, her dreams haunted by the Suit.
The following morning the daily ritual is played out, but now with the Suit as a guest. When they go for a walk in the park, Philemon insists the Suit accompanies them. In the park, Matilda is overcome with shame and tries to keep the Suit hidden from the eyes of passers-by.
Nearby a band strikes up and people start to dance. Matilda persuades Philemon to dance with her. For a moment it feels as though their marriage is as it was. But when the next dance begins Philemon insists that Matilda now dances with the Suit. She does so until she can bear it no longer and she runs back home.
At home she tries to destroy the Suit but finds she can’t. Philemon returns to find his wife dead. He is left alone with the Suit.