Sisters Grimm are putting diversity under the spotlight

The Ministry of Sound was alight with diverse and impressive talent; as Keep the Faith joined Sisters Grimm for a private performance of their acclaimed show, INALA; which is due to hit the stage at The Peacock Theatre in April 2019.

Comprising of ex-Royal Ballet ballerina Pietra Mello-Pittman, and British composer Ella Spira; Sisters Grimm is a production company that aims to be different, and they want to break all the rules!

Dating back to 2009, when the duo joined forces, the company’s aim is to deliver productions that are; vibrant, inspiring, authentic, accessible and diverse; whilst bringing together different disciplines and cultures.

INALA

Meaning ‘abundance of goodwill’ in Zulu, INALA was first premiered in Edinburgh in 2014; with the original concept of celebrating 20 years of democracy in South Africa.

Embracing an exhilarating fusion of South African and Western cultures, INALA’s 2019 relaunch brings together a unique artistic collaboration made up of two-time Grammy® Award-winning South African choral legends, Soweto Gospel Choir, and multi-award-winning choreographer, Mark Baldwin.

And if the solo performance by the very talented Jacob O’connell is anything to go by, the production will be truly breath-taking!

A lone warrior, with the strength of a full army; Jacob took to the stage; providing a solo performance that was filled with powerful moves and tribal vibes.

A juxtaposition of elegance, fused with strength, O’connell appeared to be a warrior within the wilderness.

Dancing to an intense and enticing piece of culturally rich music; Jacob took us into his world, and we loved it!

We were also treated to a sneak preview of four other productions that are currently in development.

VOICES OF THE AMAZON

Set to be produced in Brazil, and with tours lined up in both Brazil and Japan, this dance musical takes the audience deep into the heart of The Amazon Rainforest; and it looks like it will be so enticing that you won’t want to leave!

With voice over narration from acclaimed British Actor, Jeremy Irons, and performed by 16 dancers, singers and musicians; the production fuses; ballet, contemporary, and the impressive Brazilian martial art, Capoeira.

We were treated to a performance by Kay Elizabeth, who was accompanied on stage by Brazilian singers and members of London Contemporary Voices; and their performance really was as enchanting as a rain forest!

With clever and well thought out lighting, Kay’s powerful and expressive voice managed to take the audience into her grasp and place us all straight into the heart of the Amazon, as promised!

The production boasts a A Brazilian musical score, created in collaboration with world-renowned percussionists, Olodum; along with a set full of colourful birds and animals. All of which will set the scene for an unmissable story of indigenous legend; as a tale of love and bravery unfolds.

ENCHANTRESS 

A short 30-minute dance musical created by the company in collaboration with James Cousins, the piece is based on a traditional Balinese tale called ‘Rangda’, which tells the tale of a widowed demon queen who leads an army of the dead against the leader of the forces of good.

The preview offered us a spell like performance, as Balinese principal ballerina Yasmin Priyatmoko Bohn, and singer Soophia Foroughi, took to the stage, along with 10 other dancers.

Costumes designed by Georg Meyer Wiel, and music created by Ella Spira and Naomi Hammerton; all fused together to create a wonderful ‘ancient fairy-tale’ vibe, which really was enchanting!

SAKURA 

With a Japanese theme, this short dance musical is being created by the same creative team behind INALA. Choreographed by Mark Baldwin OBE, Sakura is being put together alongside Japan’s best and well-known artists; and boasts impressive choreography, created by Samurai master,Tesuro Shimaguchi; the man behind the popular film, Kill Bill.

Former Birmingham Royal Ballet Prima Ballerina Nao Sakuma and Royal Ballet dancer, Taisuke Nakao took to the stage, offering beautifully choreographed movees. Joined by 14 Japanese dancers, all dressed in beautiful traditional Geisha Girl costumes, designed by Uniqlo and KimonodeoGo; a wonderful feeling of raw culture was created.

Including Taiko drummers, Tokyo Philharmonic Choir and incredible Japanese dancers, the production is set to offer up a cultural Japanese feast!

THE GREAT WINTER

Despite being in the early stages of development, it is clear that this production will be one not to be missed when it reaches the stage.

We were left in awe by the powerful and captivating voice of Alfie Boe, backed by London Contemporary Voices; it really was a soul capturing performance.

Image Copyright: Sisters Grimm Ltd

Designed by award winning David Farley, and written by award-winning playwright James Phillips (McQueen, Hidden in the Sand, The Rubenstein Kiss) The Great Winter brings Nordic Folklore to the stage. 

Produced in partnership with sports company and global lifestyle brand EXTREME, founder of The Extreme Sports Channel the show is set to be spectacular!

The evening was proof that Sisters Grimm really are true to their word! Offering up authentic, captivating and diverse productions; which should be more accurately described as, cultural experiences; because the team really do manage to bring the stage to life!

You can keep up to date on Sisters Grimm’s productions and news by visiting: https://www.sisters-grimm.co.uk/

 

Josephine McFarlane

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