Bachtrack is the world’s largest classical music, opera and dance reviews site, based in London, UK. The site allows users to search for upcoming performances worldwide and read reviews from reviewers around the world.
In 2013 Bachtrack decided to increase their focus on dance and ballet, and I was hired as the first Dance Editor/Manager, charged with enlarging the team of dance reviewers worldwide, while editing and writing reviews myself.
I continued to review for Bachtrack after moving to Beijing in 2014, and have written over 40 dance reviews to date.
Here’s a recent article surveying Beijing’s vibrant arts scene:
A glance at Beijing’s performing arts scene (1.11.2016 Beijing)
Comedy is booming in Beijing’s cultural heart, the winding alleyways built by the
mongols named hutongs. A stroll through the hutongs will bring you – however
inadvertently – to a plethora of theatrical venues, most of which double as bars
and event spaces in general. There’s a bilingual team who perform in both English and Chinese and there’s even a women’s only group called Beijing Broads, who prove time and again that yes, women can be funny.
Here’s a little look at some of the reviews I have written from Beijing:
National Ballet of China’s The Chinese New Year (9.1.2016 Beijing)
One wonders how Petipa and Tchaikovsky would feel about The Dance of the Toffee Hawthorns or the Peg-Top, among others, but overall The Chinese New Year is an admirable ode to both a western ballet classic and to Chinese culture.
National Ballet of China’s Giselle [with Chinese translation] (4.12.2015 Beijing)
This performance resonated profoundly; National Ballet of China set the bar extremely high with Giselle. Feng Ying’s choreography preserves the beauty of the original while adding revealing touches of humour and emotion to several of the characters’ relationships.
Beijing Dance / LDTX perform Yang Wei’s Earth / Quake (3.11.2015 Beijing)
Watching a piece created by a PRC Army choreographer is a pretty special experience. For Yang’s very first venture into the world of contemporary dance, she created a piece that explores the depths of imagination and fantasy.
Tao Dance Theatre weight x 3 and 2 (29.10.2015 Beijing)
The expertly trained, fit Tao dancers have awesome stamina and astonishing athletic control. Each displayed brilliant flow within a rigid frame of quick rhythm and footwork. Duan Ni is particularly malleable, her lithe body twisting into unearthly shapes. She is outright inspirational.
San Francisco’s Caprice Programme (22.10.2015 Beijing)
The fun and energy of Wheeldon’s Rush reminded of playground games as seven pairs in bright, colourful costumes rushed about the stage. They ran full pelt for their partner, crashing into minute duets in the middle before they lined up in preparation once again.
Sylvie Guillem’s Life in Progress (10.10.2015 Beijing)
A lone dancer skuttles onto stage dragging an arm, resting momentarily where a bare tree stands centre stage. Guillem moves like a whirring gizmo, compact and full of electricity, as though she could burst any moment. Her livewire limbs rarely come to rest for long.
Check out all my dance reviews and articles on Backtrack.