A first for nine
This Saturday The Royal New Zealand Ballet and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra are collaborating to bring Leaps and Sounds, a showcase of nine world premieres of short works choreographed by RNZB dancers to music by composers from the NZSO’s Young Originals Todd Corporation Young Composers Award. Each choreographer selected music from the Young Composers recordings archive and created their own dance works, casting fellow RNZB dancers and designing costumes for their piece.
NZSO chief executive Christopher Blake says several of the selected compositions were created when the composers were only 15 years old, and although recorded by the NZSO, have never been performed live for an audience.
“The collaboration aims to nurture young talent and provide audiences with free access to these works performed by the country’s leading musicians and dancers,” Blake says.
RNZB managing director Amanda Skoog, says for most of the dancers it is the first time they have choreographed their own works.
“All are very different and it’s been exciting to see their development. It’s interesting for the dancers to be in front of a studio teaching their peers and it lifts their skills to a whole new level.”
Skoog says both performing arts companies are welcoming the opportunity to work together, something that has not happened since The Wedding in 2006.
“That’s because of scheduling. This combined performance really happened by chance during a casual conversation I had with Melissa King of the NZSO. I said the ballet wasn’t going overseas this year and Melissa said the orchestra had a couple of free dates at the Michael Fowler Centre.”
Skoog says it is also the first time the ballet company has held a dance workshop in a theatre space in front of a public audience.
“Before we’ve just used our dance studio for workshops and the performances have been in front of the family and friends of the dancers.”
Leaps and Sounds, NZSO and RNZB, Michael Fowler Centre, 4.30pm and 7.30pm, June 16.