Monday, 13 March 2017

Excellence in Wales

Ballet Cymru "The Light Princess"
(c) 2017 Ballet Cymru: all rights reserved

The Wales Theatre Awards recognize excellence in theatre, dance and opera created and presented in Wales. Nominations for the 2017 awards were made by 40 English and Welsh language critics working throughout Wales for print, broadcast and online platforms. They made 830 nominations for 281 artists and 157 shows from 89 companies (see Mike Smith Wales Theatre Awards - The Winners 25 Feb 2017 Art Scene in Wales).

I am delighted to report that two of the companies that we follow were among the winners.  Ballet Cymru won best dance production with Little Red Riding Hood and the Three Little Pigs which David Murley reviewed brilliantly in Little Red Riding Hood comes to London 2 Dec 2016 and I covered in Ballet Cymru's Summer Tour 22 May 2016 and Ballet Cymru's "Sleeping Beauty Moment" 5 Dec 2016. Caroline Finn of the National Dance Company of Wales won the best female dance artist award with Folk which I reviewed in Cambriophilia on 18 March 2016.

The best male dance artist award was won by Phil Willians of Cascade Dance Theatre. I have not yet made the acquaintance of Mr Williams or his company but I hope to do so before long. His company describes itself as
"a repertory touring company working with the Creu Cymru dance touring network to provide ensemble dance that is artist-led with a Wales and international perspective, having high production values and with an equal emphasis on quality of the art and a passion to speak to a general public audience."
For the benefit of readers outside Wales, I should say that Creu Cymru is the development agency for theatres and arts centres in Wales. Its members include nearly all the professionally run theatres, arts centres and other venues in Wales.

Last year was a good year for Ballet Cymru having been nominated for the second year running for one of the National Dance Awards. It has recruited some fine young dancers one of whom was my outstanding young dancer for 2016 (see The Terpsichore Titles: Outstanding Young Dancers of 2016 28 Dec 2016). We hope to see more of them in Ballet Cymru's Spring Tour with its new production, The Light Princess which I previewed in Ballet Cymru's The Light Princess 25 Jan 2017 and A Midsummer Night;s Dream that I also mentioned in that post. Ballet Cymru has now supplied us with the photo for The Light Princess with its press release which I have posted above.

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