With England well into its second lockdown due to COVID-19, our dance companies have had to put on hold any performances they planned to undertake during the month of November. Hopefully, by the time this latest issue of Dancing Times is published, the country will have a clearer idea of whether this lockdown will be relaxed in time for the festive season, and if we will be able to return to theatres once more. London has no fewer than three different productions of The Nutcracker in the pipeline, showing that even during a pandemic there is no escaping this indestructible Christmas classic!
The autumn saw a flurry of performances in Birmingham, Leeds and London, and this month we not only review the shows, but talk to some of the dancers and choreographers who were able to perform and create works in the theatre before a live audience for the first time since March. We hear from Strictly Come Dancing’s Shirley Ballas, and also from Manuel Legris, the new director at the Ballet of La Scala, Milan; find out how Boston Ballet has coped with lockdown; and discover – in the first half of a two-part article – how Mathilde Kschessinska may have been the hidden hand behind the dismissal of Vaslav Nijinsky from the Imperial Russian Ballet in 1911. Which just leaves me to wish all of our readers a very Merry Christmas!
Jonathan Gray asks dancers and a choreographer from Northern Ballet and The Royal Ballet what it feels like to be back at work
Andrew Foster asks if Mathilde Kschessinska was the hidden hand in Vaslav Nijinsky’s dismissal from the Imperial Russian Ballet
Nicola Rayner talks to Strictly Come Dancing’s Shirley Ballas
Graham Spicer talks to Manuel Legris, the new director of the Ballet of La Scala, Milan
Barbara Newman visits the Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer exhibition at the Barbican Art Gallery