Ballet Manila presents new works by British choreographers in 'Two!' | Inquirer Lifestyle
Martin Lawrance with Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and the working cast of “Misfit or Maverick”. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Ballet Manila

Ballet Manila presents new works by British choreographers in ‘Two!’

Martin Lawrance with Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and the working cast of “Misfit or Maverick”. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Ballet Manila
Martin Lawrance with Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and the working cast of “Misfit or Maverick”. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Ballet Manila

MANILA, Philippines—On the heels of her successful Gold birthday concert on October 4, prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde segues into Ballet Manila’s next production dubbed “Two!:

 

Co-presented by Manila Broadcasting Company, “Two!” will have its gala night on October 11, Saturday, 7:30 p.m. at Aliw Theater, CCP Complex, Pasay City. Other shows are slated on: October 10, 1 p.m.; October 11, 2 p.m.; and October 12, 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

 

“Two!” is the second production in Ballet Manila’s 19th performance season and features new works specially created by two British choreographers on Ballet Manila – Jonathan Watkins’ “Present Process” and Martin Lawrance’s “Misfit or Maverick.”

 

Macuja-Elizalde, Ballet Manila’s artistic director, notes: “While Ballet Manila is known for being faithful to the classics, as we enter our 20th year, I believe that we also need to branch out and include more contemporary pieces that will not only offer fresh performances for our audience to enjoy, but will also make our dancers more dynamic, well-rounded and better skilled in articulating dance in various genres.”

 

The prima ballerina herself will be making a special appearance in “Two!”, dancing for the first time a solo created for her by Barcelona-based choreographer, David Campos.

 

After partnering Macuja in Gold, Kremlin Ballet’s Mikhail Martynyuk joins “Two!” for his debut partnering with Ballet Manila’s Dawna Mangahas. BM’s junior principal dancer was recently named among the “Names to Watch” in ballet by London-based British critic Graham Watts in Dance Europe Magazine.

 

It was Watts who introduced British choreographers Watkins and Lawrance to Ballet Manila. The gifted young men came to Manila at different times this year to create works for the company.

 

Jonathan Watkins (center) with Ballet Manila artistic director Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and the working cast of “Present Process”. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Ballet Manila
Jonathan Watkins (center) with Ballet Manila artistic director Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and the working cast of “Present Process”. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Ballet Manila

Watkins, who uses music by Olafur Arnalds for “Present Process,” looks at the contrast between moments in life in his work. “It identifies with the idea that most of us have great highs and lows in our lives and are on a continuous quest for balance,” he says.

 

Using music by Alexander Mosolov (who was a big part in the avant-garde music scene in Russia in the 1930s and who was later ostracized in Moscow), Lawrance explores the idea of somebody not fitting in and wanting to make a change and perhaps going it alone. “For me, this is very evident in the music and especially in this ballet.”

 

“Two!” also includes one of BM’s show-stopping staples, “Dancing To Verdi,” which will be performed by the company’s current batch of young company members and apprentices. In keeping with the “two” theme, several pas de deux numbers have been lined up.

 

Ballet Manila’s 19th performance season is presented by Manila Broadcasting Company and sponsored by ACS Manufacturing Corporation (Pride and Shield Bath Soap), First United Travel, BPI Express Credit, Island Rose, Ralph’s Wines and Spirits, Aliw Theater and Star City. For tickets and other inquiries, please contact Ballet Manila at tel. nos. 525-5967 or 400-0292, via e-mail at [email protected] or through the website www.balletmanila.com.ph; or Ticketworld at 891-9999 or ticketworld.com.ph.