The Observer, 13th February 2011

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Ballet Menu; Ballet Black – review Linbury theatre, Royal Opera House, London
by Luke Jennings – The Observer, Sunday 13 February 2011

On Wednesday, at London’s Linbury Studio theatre, Ballet Black launched their 10th anniversary season, a considerable achievement by director Cassa Pancho. In a mixed bill of five pieces, two stood out: Martin Lawrance’s Pendulum, a tense brooding duet to Steve Reich strongly danced by Cira Robinson and Jazmon Voss, and William Tuckett’s Orpheus, to the Stravinsky score. Given minimal resources, Tuckett invariably rises to the occasion, and here he has magicked into being a neo-expressionist chamber ballet whose sombre tone is counterpointed by storytelling of shimmering clarity. Damien Johnson is the bereft Orpheus, Jade Hale-Christofi a baleful Hades, and Sarah Kundi a Eurydice any man would go to hell and back for. Many happy returns.