Rambert’s Mark Baldwin Choreographs with a Big Bang
He was born in Fiji and grew up in New Zealand where he learnt the haka at school, yet Mark Baldwin was destined for greatness with Britain’s world-renowned dance company, Rambert.
Rambert’s run at Canterbury’s Marlowe Theatre this month featured a brand new dance piece called The Strange Charm of Mother Nature, choreographed by Baldwin who has been the company’s artistic director for the past 12 years.
Costumes glittered with 60,000 Swarovski crystals ensuring that performances by the Britain’s leading contemporary dance company dazzled even more than usual.
The crystals featured in the costumes – inspired by space, physics and the beginnings of the universe, – ensured “a bling fest”, Baldwin said.
“How did Mother Nature initiate the big bang? Speed, velocity, gamma rays, the biggest and most colourful explosions in the universe … I’ve used all these ideas to make something poetic and beautiful. It’s very energetic and very musical,” he said.
The company also performed the iconic Rooster, an electrifying celebration of the swinging sixties in which sharp-suited, snake-hipped men and strong, sassy women perform to some of the Stones’ biggest hits, including Not Fade Away, Paint It Black, Sympathy For The Devil and Little Red Rooster.
Baldwin has danced with the Royal New Zealand Ballet. In 2006 he choreographed The Wedding for the company.
In 2010, he won the Laurence Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance and in 2011, the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award for Outstanding Company.
Original article by Jo Roberts, Kent Online, October 1, 2014.
Photo by Simon Weir.