Last night saw the premiere of Li's Choice at QPAC. This is the much-beloved Li Cunxin who heads Queensland Ballet and whose story is evidence of how challenging and demanding making it in ballet really is.
Li treated us to a beautiful trio of his choices from Natalie Weir, Greg Horsman, and Sir Kenneth MacMillan.
The evening's performance started with Glass Concerto which is choreographed by Greg Horsman. The music belongs to Philip Glass. This was my absolute favourite of coordinated and perfectly executed movements. A simple backdrop that was even more revealing as dancers emerged from the dark and mist.
The next piece was poignant, timely and strong entitled "Who we are Left". A war-themed piece with a simple and stark message of the loss and heartache of war. This piece was inspired by the music of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem - a mixture of Latin text and poems by Wilfred Owen. There was a simple prop in this beautifully executed piece, not often seen in ballet, but which spoke a thousand words in everyone's hearts and minds as we hear of the heartache and loss from the war in Ukraine.
The last piece certainly lifted the mood and I felt as if after the solemn and quite powerful first two dances this was one in which the ballet dancers could let their hair down and enjoy some dance movements with good fun skits. The costumes were colourful, the couples were enjoying the high-energy, ragtime ballet Elite Syncopations of Sir Kenneth MacMillan at his most playful! The music of Scott Joplin's King of Ragtime offered a vibrant chord and the dancing couples had such fun competing in this Dancing of the Stars ballet competition.
They danced to a full house and much applause. Li's Choice is on until the 25th of June at the Playhouse in QPAC.