Ballet dancers show off costumes

19:58, Aug 11 2014
SATELLITE SISTERS: Dancers Abigail Boyle, left, and Laura Jones prepare in Palmerston North’s Regent Theatre for the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s tour of Allegro.

The Royal New Zealand Ballet's bus has pulled into Palmerston North's Regent Theatre and the dancers were keen to show off some of their stunning costumes yesterday.

Allegro: Five Short Ballets will be performed by the RNZB tonight, bringing contemporary and traditional ballet to the stage.

Dancers Laura Jones and Abigail Boyle both dance in the world premiere of Satellites, a modern piece by New Zealand choreographer Daniel Belton. They become the satellite sisters in orbit-like silver costumes designed by Donnine Harrison and brought to life with lighting designed by Nigel Percy. Satellites also brings together electronic music by Jan-Bas Bollen, and kinetic sculpture by Jim Murphy.

The RNZB is halfway through its national tour and Allegro has so far received rave reviews.

Both dancers highlighted Satellites as an audience favourite.

"People have been really impressed," Jones said. "Satellites has been a standout. I think it is just so different and uses all the different elements."


The performance also includes two contemporary pieces by Larry Keigwin; Mattress Suite and Megalopolis, both New Zealand premieres from the New York-based choreographer. Mattress Suite uses music by Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers, Guiseppe Verdi and Etta James while Megalopolis brings a club culture sound to the stage, with music by Steve Reich and MIA.

Bringing in the traditional element to the tour are the short ballets of Allegro, choreographed by George Balanchine and Les Lutins (The Goblins), choreographed by John Kobborg.

The RNZB tour of Allegro started two weeks ago and is working its way south after its Palmerston North performance, concluding in Dunedin. Jones said she really enjoyed touring, which is a big part of being in the RNZB. "On the bus coming over to Palmerston North I was snoozing and then I opened my eyes to beautiful countryside. I love that, we get to see so much of the beautiful countryside."

Boyle agrees: "I love showing off the country side to the international dancers when we are on tour. It makes me quite proud."

Manawatu Standard