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Antony Gormley is covering the Sadler’s Wells stage in clay for new show

Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui’s Icon with designs by Antony Gormley. Dancers from Goteborgs Operans Danskompani and Eastman

Sir Antony Gormley will cover the Sadler’s Wells stage in three and a half tonnes of clay for a new show at the theatre.

The Turner Prize winner, best known for his Angel Of The North sculpture, is working with Belgian choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui on the work, called Icon.

It is part of a season announced by the dance venue to celebrate 20 years in its north London home. Artistic director Alistair Spalding said using the clay would be “a challenge for our stage crew” but it was an example of how the theatre brought together “major visual artists” with some of the “greatest choreographers”.

He said: “It starts with the whole of the stage covered in clay and gradually they will unpeel it and make masks and make models out of it … it’s a real collaboration of this material and movement.”

Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui’s Icon with designs by Antony Gormley. Dancers from Goteborgs Operans Danskompani and Eastman

Sir Antony said: “Sadler’s Wells is where you go to get inspired … being energised by this display of intelligent bodies, extraordinary music, an architecture of sound irradiated by wonderful, surprising movement it’s the best thing.” Cherkaoui worked with Sir Antony at Sadler’s Wells on a 2005 project called Zero Degrees.

The work of another Turner Prize winner will also be on show in a production of the classic Persian love story Layla and Majnun. The show, choreographed by Mark Morris, with music by Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, will feature costume and stage design by the late Howard Hodgin, who won the Turner in 1985.

Turner prize winning artist Antony Gormley

Other works later this year include a “theatrical realisation” of Nitin Sawhney’s 2015 album Dystopian Dream, Akram Khan in Xenos, which tells the story of an Indian soldier in the First World War, and works featuring the Royal Ballet’s  principal dancer Natalia Osipova.

Spalding said Sadler’s Wells, which is due to open a new theatre in the Olympic Park by 2022, had played a leading role in making dance more popular and accessible. He said: “It is remarkable where we are, where dance is actually in the centre of this new development in Stratford. It definitely wouldn’t have been thought of 20 years ago.”

 

Article by Robert Dex, The Evening Standard, London.

Posted in: News on February 2, 2018 by...