On Tuesday the 2nd of July I was once again off to London! This time for a lovely tribute for the famous and incredible choreographer, Gillian Lynne.
For those of you who do not know who Gillian Lynne is, let me tell you about her…
Gillian was born in 1926 in Kent, She started her career at the age of 16 before joining the Sadler’s Wells Ballet Company. Some of her solo performances for Sadler’s Wells Ballet included dancing at the reopening of the Royal Opera House in 1946.
Her credits from her early years also include such roles as the Black Queen in Checkmate, the Lilac Fairy in Sleeping Beauty and Queen of the Wills in Giselle. After many years as a dancer herself, Gillian went on to choreograph 100s of shows such as Cats, Phantom of the Opera, Aspects of Love and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. She sadly passed away on the 1st of July 2018
I adored this event! There were so many great performances! From Dominic North and Max Westwell who performed a lovely dance duet called The Prince and The Swan from Swan Lake to Greg Castiglioni, Wayne Sleep and Company performing the song Wilkommen from the musical Cabaret!
To summerise this magical night I’m going to have to break this down into top moments from both the musical theatre and the ballet/dance worlds because if I summarized in just 2 points so many performances would be lost.
Top 3 Dance Performances
Would just like to apologise to any dancers who read this, I did a bit of ballet as a child but have no idea of proper terms for each move etc.
- I think my favourite dance performa
nce from this night was 100% Sergei Polunin’s performance to the song Take Me To Church by Hozier! It was INCREDIBLE and so so SO mesmerizing, you couldn’t take your eyes off of him. The way he just managed to leap up into the air out of nowhere and then do like 10 pirouettes was incredible!
- As mentioned above there was a gorgeous performance from Swan Lake with Dominic North and Max Westwell, like above it was incredibly captivating! Whilst I’ve never been a straight ballet type of girl (more into the pieces you get in musical theatre) this was incredible! They performed with such strength and grace and I loved every second of it!
- The last whilst technically a theatre performance I found I was watching the dancers more than the performer, the dancers they had for this night were incredible but specifically, in the Pure Imagination performance, I don’t know if it was the lighting or the dance style, or both, but something about this performance stuck with me for days after seeing the show!
As I said the all the dancers and dance performances were incredible but those 3 dances specifcally stuck out!
Top 3 Musical Performances
I’ll break this down into sections because otherwise we’d be here all day!
- Phantom Of The Opera: No shocks here, but I loved the POTO section! I LOVE the dances in Phantom especially both of the ballet pieces (Hannibal and Il Muto) like I love them! If I had any dance ability I would 1000% learn the Hannibal ballet as I love it so much! (Getting close with a section from Masquerade though 😂) . Whilst there was no Phantom ballets there were some of my favourite performers from the world of Phantom! I honestly couldn’t choose between Sierra Boggess singing Think of Me or Ramin Karimloo and Ben Forster singing Music of the Night together! They were all incredible ( as if they wouldn’t be!) and was 100% one of my favourite performances from the night!
- Secondly was a musical I had heard of but had never sat down and listened to but I loved the Half A Sixpence section! It just seemed like such a fun musical to see with some fun dance breaks during the songs- of which were incredibly fun and upbeat! My favourite song from that section was probably the performance of Flash Bang Wallop which was before the interval! Although I still haven’t listened to the soundtrack (I will eventually don’t worry!) I really enjoyed this performance and would love to see it at some point!
- Number 3 is probably the musical Gillian is best known for…Cats! Whilst they weren’t dressed up in cat costumes, I thoroughly enjoyed the Cats section! Like Half A Six Pence I somehow still haven’t watched or listened to Cats I loved this! I thought Beverley Knight’s performance of the well-known song Midnight was incredible! As well as the other dances from this section! Time to put my recently purchased DVD of Cats on I think!
It’s safe to say I LOVED this wonderful event in memory of the incredible Gillian Lynne! Watching the show you forgot that she choreographed and danced to so many of these amazing dances! Every one different to the last,
This event was filled with heartwarming stories from people who knew her and incredible talent! So glad I had the opportunity to go to such a wonderful event!