A founding father of contemporary dance in the UK Richard Alston is one of the most musical of choreographers creating work today. Alston continues to delve deeply into different musical experiences with his new work An Italian in Madrid, commissioned by Sadler’s Wells. For this piece he has invited BBC Young Dancer grand finalist and outstanding kathak performer Vidya Patel to dance with the Company as he explores how art forms and cultures absorb new influences. There are many striking similarities between the classical dance form of kathak and Spanish flamenco. Alston has been inspired by the sonatas of Domenico Scarlatti, pieces which were influenced by the classical Spanish guitar music the composer heard during his several years in Spain - an Italian indeed in Madrid.
The programme also sees the London premiere of Martin Lawrance’s Stronghold, set to a score by Pulitzer Prize Winner Julia Wolfe. It is a fiercely intense work reflecting the turbulent character of the music, richly scored for eight double basses.
Created especially for National Dance Award-winner Jonathan Goddard and Liam Riddick, Mazur reunites these two for the first time since their performance at The Place in June 2015. Set to Chopin’s Mazurkas, played live by Jason Ridgway, Mazur is a dance for two friends sharing what they love and what they feel they have lost. For Chopin and his friends what was lost was Poland, the country to which they could not return.
The programme sees Alston’s Brisk Singing returning to London for first time in a decade. Set to the magnificent Baroque of Jean Phillippe Rameau’s opera Les Boréades, it is a dance of joyously springing rhythms.
On Tuesday 29 March there will be a post-show Q&A with Richard Alston and Sadler’s Wells Chief Executive/Artistic Director Alistair Spalding (BSL-interpreted).