Russell Maliphant, one of the country’s leading choreogrpahers, will be presenting a second season of dance at Print Room Coronet this March.
maliphantworks2 is five duets, four performed live in the venue’s intimate theatre space and the fifth, a new film installation, in the studio.
Maliphant is known for his liquid sculptural choreography combining the precision of ballet with the weighted qualities of contemporary dance and martial arts. Working with lighting designer Michael Hulls, he creates architectural on-stage worlds of light and form.
Maliphant has created a new work, as yet untitled, for himself and longtime collaborator and muse, Dana Fouras. This will be the first time they have performed together in London for 15 years.
Two times Two is a duet created from an iconic solo originally made on Fouras in 1997 and also danced by Sylvie Guillem in 2011’s Push. Fouras is joined by Grace Jabbari for the duet which is performed to the original score by Andy Cowton.
Critical Mass was created in 1998 for Maliphant and then-DV8 dancer Robert Tannion and also performed by Ballet Boyz in 2001. Here it is performed by Maliphant and Dickson Mbi to music by Richard English and Andy Cowton
Still, a duet from 2013 created for Dickson Mbi and Carys Staton. This time Mbi performs with Grace Jabbari. Video projections by Jan Urbanowski play an integral part in the choreography. Music is by Armand Amar and costumes by Stevie Stewart
In the venue’s studio is a video installation created using footage of Maliphant and Fouras from a work originally conceived by Tim Etchells and Hugo Glendinning. The original footage was shot on location in the Irish Sea for a production of Dido and Aeneas at Bruges Opera House in 2003.
KCW readers can see Russell and these performances on Tuesday 6th to Saturday 17th March.
Below is a Q&A with Russell himself:
You had a successful season at the Print Room at the Coronet in 2017 and you’re coming back again in March. Why do you like this venue so much?
The Print Room at the Coronet is a unique theatre with an atmosphere and relationship to the performance space that is unusually intimate for London. As a performer it’s a pleasure to work in lots of different settings to practise your craft. The Print Room’s small performance space means it’s very particular in what it suits – which is why I’m focussing on duets.
The Print Room is quite near to where you live in North West London. What are the advantages to you of working so locally?
It’s unusual in a city the size of London to have much of a local life, so to be able to get from your home to the theatre in 15 minutes, and friends who might not be connected to dance may come along, feels quite special. The Print Room also has a great atmosphere to hang out in after the show so it’s easy to catch up with people over a drink after the show. Knowing you don’t have to trek across London at the end of the evening is a big bonus.
Your show is an evening of duets and one of them is a world premiere. Could you tell us a little bit more about that?
I had recently worked with dancer Dana Fouras on some new material during a period of research and development and I wanted to draw on some of that material to create a short duet for the two of us to sit alongside the other, older, pieces for this Print Room season. Dana and I haven’t had the opportunity to dance a duet together for over 15 years and it’s interesting facing where we were then, where we are now, and what we can draw out of each other.
You have famously worked with some big dance names. How do you choose your dancers?
I often choose my dancers by seeing them in workshops or performances. I teach quite a lot and that’s a good way to see how a dancer deals with material, improvisation or tasks and how we might get along in the studio. I also hold auditions from time to time and often make a selection from watching online films of the dancers before we have studio time for a couple of days. I’ve been involved in dance for a long time and, luckily for me, over the years some of the big names you mention have approached me to work with them.
What’s coming up next for you?
I’m creating a new full evening work for my company which will premiere in 2019. I’m also making a piece in Athens for 18 dancers, some from my company, using both contemporary and Greek traditional dance with phenomenal music by Vangelis. And I’m choreographing for a film with director Jacqui Morris (who I also worked with last year) on a documentary about Nureyev titled Orgy for One which will be released theatrically worldwide later this year.
Print Room at the Coronet
103 Notting Hill Gate, London, W11 3LB
Performance times: 7.30pm (except 7 March at 7pm)
Box Office: 020 3642 6606
Nearest tube: Notting Hill
Length: approximately one hour