National Dance Company of Wales Autumn Tour at The Courtyard


NATIONAL Dance Company Wales were back at The Courtyard last night with a mesmerising trio of works by European choreographers, all deliciously and distinctively different, and all left me wanting to rewind and re-play!

The evening opened with a solitary dancer on the stage, creating her own vocal rhythm and dancing to her own tune. Choreographer Alexander Ekman explains that, having often worked with rhythm, he decided that it was time to create this piece, Tuplet, dedicated to rhythm. The six dancers create a drumming and percussive soundtrack, with abrupt changes signifying interruptions and alterations to that rhythm. Accepting that there is no narrative to be followed, no clear message to be understood, leaves space for meaning to emerge, and this piece, with its emphasis on the almost unheard but ever-present soundtrack of our lives, subtly suggests that while we move in unity at times, we're all dancing to our own tune.

A Mighty Wind by Jeroen Verbruggen brought a change of tone as the visceral power of a rock concert stood as a metaphor for the elemental force of the wind as a storm rages. Hypnotic and high-octane, A Mighty Wind caught the mood of both with its driving rock score and brilliantly employed wind machines!

The triple bill was completed by Johan Inger's Walking Mad, a playful piece inventively set to Ravel's Bolero and exploring the endless dance of relationships as lovers as come together, pull away and part or re-unite. A wall stands centre stage, serving as obstacle to some, enabler to others and altering the space as doors open, and the wall falls, rises and folds, while the nine dancers climb it, pound it, dance around it, at one point in party hats, emerging later in overcoats and bowler hats that summon shades of Magritte and deliver a sense of the surreal. Proving perhaps, if proof were needed, that love is nothing if not a kind of madness.

Catch National Dance Company Wales' autumn tour at Theatr Brycheiniog in Brecon on November 20 at 7.45pm. To book and for more information, visit