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Thursday March 27, 2003
Review: Richard Alston Dance Company
Richard Alston Dance Company dancer
The amazing movements displayed by dancers of the Richard Alston Dance Company.

Dancers defied gravity with effortless movements in Richard Alston's modern choreographies.

Jenny Enarsson felt like joining in.

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By Jenny Enarsson

The members of Richard Alston Dance Company are true masters of the first rule of dance Ė making it look easy. These incredibly talented dancers perform so effortlessly that they almost make the spectators think that they could join in at any time.

Read the feature article on Richard Alston Dance Company.

Working with a repertoire of six choreographies, the company is currently touring the UK, offering a different combination of three pieces in each town that they visit. In Oxford, they performed Stampede, Slow Airs Almost All, and Rumours, Visions.

Alston, who choreographed his first work in 1968, often chooses classical music to set off his modern work, creating unexpected and liberating discrepancies between music and movement.

This time, mediaeval Italian music and pieces by Mozart and Britten enhanced the visual experience.

A highlight of the evening was the tender yet dynamic duet in Rumours, Visions in which Jonathan Goddard and Martin Lawrance defied convention and performed the kind of loving choreography usually reserved for dancers of different sexes.

In this piece, inspired by the intense love affair between Arthur Rimbaud and Paul Verlaine, Alston let his dancers combine passion, physical strength and amazing talent to tell a heartbreakingly beautiful story.

Richard Alstonís dancers took the Oxford audience on a journey that ended too quickly.

They made gravity look like no more than a theory. They took on Alstonís playful yet serious work with such stage presence and conveyed such joy that it was difficult not to long to be among them. As ever, they made us want to dance.

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