Poor Nijinsky. Poor sad, mad, vanished Nijinsky. His career was astonishingly brief, the trail that was left in his meteoric wake so persistent it is hard to believe he danced for little more than seven years. He was born in 1889 or 1890, to Polish dancers working in Russia (Nijinsky
When the Bolshoi’s wunderkinder, Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev, suddenly left the company two years ago, the dance world played endless guessing-games as to where they would end up. It was like Claude Rains in Casablanca: round up the usual suspects. The last company anyone expected, however, was the Mikhailovsky,
Peter Gelb, the Metropolitan Opera’s general manager, has complained that Opera News, the US’s largest-circulation classical music magazine, has run negative reviews of Met productions. The magazine, supported financially by an affiliate of the Met, has therefore decided, rather than run nothing but puff-pieces, that it will, instead, not review
“I think people marry far too much; it is such a lottery after all, and to a poor woman a very doubtful happiness.” So wrote Queen Victoria, and reading Kate Summerscale’s extraordinary dissection of a failed marriage, it is hard to argue. In 1850, Isabella Robinson, a bored and restless
Historical novels look simple, but they are difficult to pull off. There is a contradiction built into the genre: they attempt to recreate the past so that we feel it is “now”, past and present simultaneously. A prose style that is too innately archaic (“prithee, fair maiden”) will lose readers;
Dance by and for people with no interest in dance An apocryphal story tells of an awful theatrical adaptation of the story of Anne Frank. When the Nazis arrive to search the house where the family are in hiding, an enraged theatre-goer shouts, “She’s in the attic!” Well, I didn’t
(published in the Telegraph 27 Mar 2012) The rise and rise of Soho, London’s darkly alluring twilight zone In her fiction, Virginia Woolf transformed Soho into a menacing urban space filled with “fierce” light and “raw” voices, even as she privately commended herself for driving a good bargain on some
Melodrama is not something we accept easily these days, tittering gently as the gore runs, moving restlessly in our seats as heroes or villains declaim to the gallery. So all the more odd, on the surface, that Sweeney Todd is the most popular of Stephen Sondheim’s musicals. On the surface.