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Who is the choreographer of 'Infra'?
Wayne McGregor was appointed resident choreographer of The Royal Ballet in 2006 becoming the first contemporary choreographer to hold the past. His many works for The Royal Ballet include: 'Chroma' (2006), 'Limen' (2009), 'Raven Girl' (2013) and 'Woolf Works' (2015). He also directed and choreographed 'Dido' in 2009 for The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera. A multiple award winner, McGregor's work appears in the repertoire of leading international ballet companies and he has created new works for numerous ballet companies. In 1992, McGregor founded Wayne McGregor/Random Dance. Random Dance is now a resident company of Sadlers Wells. His interest in cross discipline collaboration, has seen him work across dance, film, music, visual art, technology and science. He has directed movement for theatre and film including Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire and music videos including the Grammy nominated 'Lotus Flower' by RadioHead.
What is the company who performed 'Infra'?
The Royal Ballet, which owes it's existence to the vision of Dame Ninette Devalois. She was a dancer, teacher, choreographer and entrepreneur, who assembled a small company and school in 1931. In 1956, to mark it's 25th anniversary, the name The Royal Ballet was granted by Royal Charter. Today The Royal Ballet is one of the worlds greatest ballet companies under the leadership of Kevin O'Hare. The repertory includes works by Kennith Macmillan, Frederick Ashton, Liam Scarlett and Wayne McGregor.
What was the date of 'Infra's' first performance?
13the November 2008 at The Royal Opera House, London.
What is the dance style in 'Infra'?
Contemporary ballet- McGregor has a distinctive dance style which uses speed and energy. He is also known for his use of dynamics, angular, sinuous and hyper-extended movements that push dancers to physical extremes.
What was the choreographic approach for 'Infra'?
McGregor uses three methods to generate movement vocabulary for the piece.
1. SHOW a phrase to a whole or part of the cast. Dancers watch and either re-create the phrase exactly or create a version.
2. MAKE a phrase on a target dancer or dancers, others watch and copy or develop.
3. TASK set a choreographic task for dancers to complete or pose a choreographic problem for the dancers to solve. Typically the task or problem involves imagery as a stimulus for creating movement. The movement vocabulary is then structured into longer 'sentences' and 'paragraphs'. Finally he works musically with the structure and pieces it altogether like a jigsaw.
What is the stimulus for 'Infra'?
The title 'Infra' is from the Latin word for 'below' and the work presents a portrait of life beneath the surface of the city. The abstract ballet delves beneath the surface to present a moving meditation on human interactions.
What was the choreographic intention for 'Infra'?
'Infra' is about seeing below the surface of things. It is taken quite literally, in this case, in the form of Julian Opie's design. You can see people walking in the street. 'Infra' is about people and the choreography has found a pedestrian language which is recognizably human. When you look at a body on stage, you have some understanding of what the body is doing. The piece is about inferences. It infers particular types of relationships and therefore the emotional content implies itself. One of McGregor's choreographic aims is to help the audience's eye in watching a complex structure, but in 'Infra', McGregor has purposefully left open the full visual field to let the audience make their own selections.
How many dancers are there in 'Infra'?
There are 12 dancers, 6 females and 6 males. There is a brief appearance of a crowd who will walk across the stage.
What is the duration?
28 minutes.
What is the structure of the dance?
The ballet comprises of solos, duets and ensembles with many arresting moments. For instance six couples dance duets in 6 squares of light and also a crowd surges across the stage, unaware of one woman's private grief.
What is the aural setting?
The music is by Max Richter. The sound design is by Chris Ekers. The score mixes melancholy string melodies with electronic sounds and everyday sounds such as train whistles.
What are the costumes like in 'Infra'?
The Costume design was by Moritz Junge. They have fitted shorts, vests and t-shirts in flesh, black, white and grey colours. One female dancer wears a short wrap-around skirt. One male dancer wears long trousers. The females wear pointe shoes. Street clothes are worn for the brief appearance of the crowd.
What is the performance environment in the dance?
A proscenium arch/ theatrical setting.
What is the lighting like in the dance 'Infra'?
The lighting designer is Lucy Carter with whom Wayne McGregor has created a strong partnership. The lighting, which relates closely to the structure, lights the width of the stage and often focuses downstage. Occasionally, dancers are lit by shapes of light and at one point, 6 rectangles of light frame 6 duets. Colours are used to highlight different sections.
What is the staging/set like in the dance?
The set design is by artist Julian Opie. An 18 meter LED screen is placed high on the black, back wall. It runs the width of the stage, along which there is a mesmerizing flow of electronic walking figures.