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VIDEO: Breathtaking and not a gimmick, BalletBoyz heads to Bromley
A LAD in a vest and jogging bottoms is lifting another muscle bound guy in jogging bottoms and swinging him around.
It’s sort of like a fight, I think, but it is also strangely beautiful and set to music.
I’m at the swanky south west London warehouse base of BalletBoyz to see them rehearse before they head to the Churchill Theatre in Bromley on November 19.
Stood on the studio’s balcony with a cup of tea, some posh biscuits and dozen or so theatre-bods, I watch as nine dancers go through their routines that are already near flawless.
These guys are seriously powerful. There are no tiny ballerinas to twirl around, they are all fully grown men with ripped physiques, who can hoist each other into the air with apparent ease and impressive precision.
The balance, spatial awareness and concentration they need to move so pristinely and with such precision is breathtaking. These are not dancers, they are athletes.
And BalletBoyz is about as fey as a game of rugby, for those sniggering at the back.
Members of the company have come from all sorts of backgrounds, not just classical dance. One guy was a tumbler preparing to join the marines when he joined up.
Nor does it look in any way feminine. The dancers have tattoos, attitude and facial hair and there is not a pump or legging in sight at the rehearsal.
The set-up is rigorous, though. The creative directors Billy Trevitt and Michael Nunn founded the company in 2001, having both worked in the Royal Ballet.
And they have the advantage of having both artistic directors and the use of top-notch choreographers.
The upshot is accessible contemporary dance that pleases the casual fan, the dance enthusiast and the purist.
For those still intimidated by the prospect of an evening of confusing dance, the BalleBoyz have a set-up to make it easier and more interesting.
Each of the two short parts begins with short, not-too-serious documentaries introducing the scenes.
When I walked into the BalletBoyz studio, I admit I was sceptical. It seemed like a gimmick – one with an annoyingly ‘urban’ ‘z’ – and I expected to be bored and alienated.
But I wasn’t, I was hypnotised.
BalletBoyz is at The Churchill Theatre in Bromley on November 19. Tickets cost £18.90 to £28.90. Go to atgtickets.com/bromley
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