Something old, something new
This article is from 2007.
In 2005, when Scottish Ballet performed at the Edinburgh International Festival after an absence of 20 years, great excitement surrounded their return. Now that the company is back for the third year running, they almost seem old hat – yet there are a couple of firsts worth looking out for.
Since Ashley Page took over as artistic director in 2003, he has only ever bought in existing works, or used his own choreography. Now, for the first time, he has been able to commission a brand new piece created specially for Scottish Ballet. Ride the Beast by New York choreographer, Stephen Petronio, is a fast-paced cannonball of a work set to several emotive songs by Radiohead.
‘Stephen helped us re-launch the company with MiddleSex Gorge when I first arrived,’ says Page. ‘So he was always slated to be my first commission. It’s nice to have a premiere at the Festival, and I wanted to give Stephen that honour.’ Petronio’s piece will be joined by For MG: The Movie by Trisha Brown, whose own company is also at the Festival this year. And closing the programme in a flurry of speeding legs is Page’s Fearful Symmetries – a work he created for the Royal Ballet to great acclaim in 1994.
‘I wanted to save Fearful Symmetries for something like the Festival because it fits its stature,’ explains Page. ‘The piece won an Oliver Award and a Time Out Award and was a big success for me and the Royal Ballet, so I wanted to wait until it was the right time for us to do it.’ (Kelly Apter)
Edinburgh Playhouse, 473 2000, 18 & 20 Aug, 7.30pm; 19 Aug, 4pm, £8–£40.