Welcome to our 2019 celebration of dance! The performance, you will see reimagined classic as well as new works in classical ballet, hip-hop and contemporary dance. Note that some of our dancers have just started ballet in February this year, whereas others have danced with UJ Adult ballet for up to three years. Thank you for coming to share our love of dance with us!
Prof Catherine Botha (PhD, ARAD, registered teacher of the Royal Academy of Dance) initiated free adult ballet classes for any UJ student or staff member, most of whom had never danced before, as a UJ community service project in mid-2014. The students have presented their work on stage every year since 2015, and in 2019, our new and senior dancers present an exciting showcase of ballet, hip-hop, contemporary and fusion pieces.
Expect to be wowed by the breathtaking Bluebird pas de deux and solos performed by senior dancers Zoey Bougaard and Deon Hattingh that open the evening. Nqobile Marisheni then performs a hauntingly beautiful newly choreographed contemporary piece entitled “The Girl Behind the Mask”. This is followed by an original piece of new choreography in lyrical hip-hop by PhD candidate in Philosophy Devon Bailey “Know Thyself, Love Thyself”. The final performance piece before the interval is an interpretation of Jerome Robbins’ “Mistake Waltz”. Yes, the mistakes in this dance performed by some of our lovely senior dancers are on purpose, since the dance is a spoof about the perfection that ballet requires and what happens when things go wrong.
After the short interval, Devon Bailey performs a hip hop solo which is followed by a reimagined version of the famous Flowers Waltz from the Nutcracker ballet. This piece is performed by a combination of dancers who are brand new to ballet, and more experienced dancers. Deon Hattingh then performs an original solo entitled Ne Me Quitte Pas (‘Never let me go’). This is followed by a spectacular performance of the Grand Pas De Quatre. Four of our exquisite senior UJ dancers present a re-imagined section of this very famous work that originally brought together on one stage the four greatest Romantic era ballerinas – Lucile Grahn, Carlotta Grisi, Fanny Cerrito, and Marie Taglioni. The piece displays the essence of the Romantic style – demure lightness, delicacy, and poise. The dancers then all come onto the stage for a finale to end this beautiful evening celebrating dance.