The Great Gatsby Captures The Heady Jazz Age At Sadler’s Wells

The Northern Ballet returns to London with its sell-out sensation The Great Gatsby at the Sadler’s Wells Theatre. If you missed its first tour in 2013, as I did, this is your chance to pounce on tickets. But hurry – it’s only in town for seven performances.

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby captures the heady Jazz Age of 1920s America. It’s a story packed full of decadence and luxury. You can almost hear the hot jazz on the summer night breeze and taste the bootleg cocktails. But underneath the dazzling display of excess, obsession and unrequited love lead inevitably to tragedy.

Such a plot-driven story was always going to be difficult to translate into a ballet, relying as it does on the clarity of Fitzgerald’s language. But David Nixon OBE and the Northern Ballet do an admirable job. If you know and love Gatsby, you’ll love the ballet. If you haven’t a clue who these people are and what they’re on about, you may be a bit confused. But any misunderstandings along the storyline will fade with the impeccable performances the dancers give.

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CityDance’s Paul Gordon Emerson

U.S. Helsinki Commission photo/Daniel Redfield

Paul Gordon Emerson serves as the Artistic Director for CityDance, a professional dance company with a social conscience. This leads them not only into the local community with neighborhood outreach programs, but also into the world to affect change on some of humanity’s most pressing issues.

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Blues in the Night

One of my favorite things about living on the outskirts of DC is turning my back on the city and traveling down back roads through tall trees and deep underbrush as hot, muggy days turn into warm humid nights. The air is heavy with earth, grass, and water, and fireflies blaze valiantly in the immediate sky. Thursday night, I dove into the magic of the early summer night and made my way to Glen Echo for some blues dancing. Continue reading