London Diary

Velvet Petal

Scottish Dance Theatre are bringing Fleur Darkin's Velvet Petal to the Southbank Centre for two shows - on 31 August and 1 September. Inspired by the life-cycle of the Monarch butterfly and Robert Mapplethorpe’s polaroids, the piece is accompanied with a fresh dance-punk score by Torben Lars Sylvest including music by LCD Soundsystem, Spoek Mathambo, and Four Tet, with a live performance by Abul Mogard.  

Carmen La Cubana

Drawing on the Broadway hit Carmen Jones and set to an arrangement of Bizet's Carmen spliced with salsa, mambo, rumba and ha-cha-cha music, the UK premiere of Carmen La Cubana is directed by Christopher Renshaw. The cast includes Luna Manzanares Nardo as Carmen, Albita Rodríguez as La Señora; Rachel Pastor Pérez as Paquita, Laritza Pulido García as Coqui and Joaquín Garcia Medjias as Niño. The musical is at Sadler's Wells from 1 - 18 August.


No Bolshoi or Mariinsky Ballet in London this summer but the St Petersburg Ballet are returning to the London Coliseum with their production of Swan Lake from 22 August - 2 September. Dancers scheduled to appear in some of the performances include Irina Kolesnikova and guest artists Denis Rodkin (from the Bolshoi) and Kimin Kim (from the Mariinsky).


Bonnie Langford as Dorothy Brock in 42nd Street. © Matt Crockett

42nd Street

Bonnie Langford is to join the cast of 42nd Street, taking on the role of Dorothy Brock on 3 September. The timeless musical has just extended its run at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane until 5 January 2019. Bonnie’s West End credits include Cats, Gypsy and Chicago, and she has recently been seen in BBC’s Eastenders as Carmel Kazemi.


Created by French choreographer Pierre Rigal, Scandale is billed as 'a shamanic piece that investigates the birth of choreography. Is Music or Movement the Mother of Dance?' Presented by Breakin' Convention, the piece features six hip hop dancers and can be seen at Sadler's Wells on 5 & 6 September.


Tony Adigun's Fagin's Twist is at The Place on 25 and 26 September. A contemporary take on Charles Dicken's Oliver Twist, it is billed as 'the untold story of a notorious and complex villain.


New English Ballet Theatre in Wayne Eagling's Remembrance. © NEBT


New English Ballet Theatre will be touring its new double bill to Shrewbury, Grays, London and Birmingham from 18 September to 1 October. The programme comprises Wayne Eagling's new ballet, Remembrance, set to Handel's Ode to St Cecilia's Day and Jenna Lee's The Four Seasons set to Vivaldi's famous score, recomposed by Max Richter. A special gala performance on the company's first night at London's Peacock Theatre on 27 September will be accompanied by The English Concert orchestra and feature guest artists. The proceeds from the evening, which also includes a reception, will support both NEBT and The Royal British Legion. TICKETS


Directed by Jacqui and David Morris, Nureyev, a new film on Rudolf Nureyev features never-before-seen footage and choreography by Russell Maliphant and is made with the support of The Nureyev Foundation. The narration is  by Dame Siân Phillips and ther contributors include Nureyev’s contemporaries from the dance world, Alla Osipenko, Ghislaine Thesmar and Dame Antoinette Sibley, dance experts Clement Crisp, Meredith Daneman and the late John Gruen, historian Evan Mawdsley and Nureyev’s personal friends Tamara Zakrzhevskaya, Leonid Romankov and Liuba Myasnikova. The film previews at the Curzon Mayfair from 21 September and goes on general release from 25 September. More more and tickets at


English National Ballet is reviving its Lest We Forget programme at Sadler's Wells from 20 - 29 September. Originated premiered in 2015, the bill comprises Akram Khan's Dust, Liam Scalett's No Man's Land and Russell Maliphant's Second Breath. More INFO.


The Royal Ballet opens the new season with Kenneth MacMillan's Mayerling from 8 - 30 October. Principal casting includes: Watson, McRae, Soares, Hirano or Bonelli as Crown Prince Rudolf; Osipova, Lamb, Cuthbertson, Hamilton, Takada or Morera as Mary Vetsera.


Presented by Dance Umbrella as part of this year's festival, Dimitris Papaioannou's The Great Tamer is being billed as an 'enigmatic exploration of life' and can be seen at Sadler's Wells on 16 & 17 October.