Posted by Hazel J Taylor on November 28, 2010
Photo by Jeff Busby
Edge of Night, the Australian Ballet’s most recent Sydney Opera House triple bill, shows off the divinely gorgeous choreography of Stephen Barnes and Tim Harbour through the bodies and souls of some of the world’s hottest dancers.
Choreographed in 2003, Stephen Barnes’ At the Edge of Night (first on the bill) is a delicate, intriguing and sultry piece set to a selection of seven of Rachmaninov’s Op.23 and 32 preludes. Barnes began with the preludes as the foundation from which he built the ballet. Sitting with his set and costume designer Michael Pearce, the decision was collectively made that the ballet should take an ephemeral quality, with broad themes which inspired more questions than answers.
As a result, the ballet does not commit itself to a definite time or place in history, although the dramatic deep maroon coloured dresses made of thick Chinese dressing-gown fabric, and professional business attire of the ballet gents emanates a post war vibe, particularly when coupled with the nationalistic Rachmaninov score. Barnes and Pearce note that the fragments of the story emerged from their analysis of the score. Evoking themes of the past, of memories and of dreams, the dancers appear throughout the piece as if floating through an old house like ghosts in the night, calling on memories and conjuring images of forgotten times.More...