all), the dancers sustain the pace well. Mood and tempo changes are helped along by live music (a plus to dance performance) courtesy ofa versatile four-piece jazz band. Tackling the more serious moments ofthe evening with maturity and confidence, the group (perhaps it was the material) were occasionally awkward in the funny spots. But it was fun. Talent is budding again in Dancers Anonymous this year. (Alice Bain) Dancers Anonymous. Chaplaincy Centre. Bristo Square (venue 23) Until 23 A ug. 8pm and 23, 24. 30Aug, 5pm. 1;? (£2.50).
SCOTTCLARKAND DANCERS t
The young American dancer-choreographer Scott Clark has been teaching and occasionally performing at London‘s Laban Centre. He‘s a well-built dancer with. strong control and a notably liquid style, attractive to watch whether in 3 quicksilver movement or rapt i stillness. His choreography is brainy. i yet not so abstract that it has no use for emotion. The four dances on Clark‘:; programme include a solo of swimming muscularity set to music by Steve Reich. In Sunday Excerpts he and the fine. fluid Julie Blackman I conduct an alternately tender. . strenuous exploration ofdomesticity as a couple lounging around reading , the papers. drinking tea. and getting out of— and back to — bed. i In Heaven Somewhere — featuring a 3 soundtrack of various gospel vocals —i Clark and Blackman are joined by 3 the strikingly tall blondc Jonathan Thrift. The piece is serious and charismatic. spirituality realised
through a well-paced series of falls. lifts. supports. embraces and healing contact. The trio‘s least interesting work wasn‘t choreographed by Clark at all. The drawback of Vera Blaine‘s Progression is that it doesn't fulfil Clark‘s expressed desire to ‘help the audience anchor their sensation‘, something the rest ofthis performance does to a turn. (Denis O‘Toole) Scott Clark and Dancers, Chaplaincy Centre (venue 23), Bristo Square. 21—23 Aug, 12.30pm. £3 (£2.50).
Dance on the International Festival this year has been confined to two fairy stories from abroad and one mixed programme from London.
The latter presented by LFBZ included a duet danced by Peter Schaufuss and their artistic director Patrick Armand which was to be the only example ofspectacular technique this August. Schaufuss seemed too large for the stage,such was his charismatic charm and energy.
Cinderella, a new version from the Lyon Opera Ballet. was surprisingly, the contemporary highlight. A space-age fairy godmother with laser wand, a three-itier doll’s house set, at once functional and magical and twinkling lights put new life into an old story. Spare movement in the choreography of Maguy Marin gave expression to the masked dancers.
The traditional Sleeping Beauty
_ THEE? ..
from the Ballet ofthe Great Theatre,
Warsaw. with few surprises completed the Festival Programme. More dance in Edinburgh would be welcomed. (Alice Bain)
Compose r’s (‘hoice Weekend of Contemporary Music Music ofour own time is something there‘s never usually very tnuch of at the Edinburgh Festival. but this year that situation is set to change — at least for one weekend — with the new. and what it is hoped will become a regular. feature ofone composer and his choice of music. Speaking about Alexander (ioehr and the works he has chosen. ex-student Geoffrey King (who now lives and works in Edinburgh and is himself having a work premiered) describes his taste as being ‘a bit off-beat. but with a few of his pet composers eg Hans Eisler and Bayan Northcott. recently sacked critic of The Sunday Times, who's a great mate ofSandy‘s. And he‘s very fond ofJanacek. It‘s really a very personal choice — and a bit reactionary.‘ It‘s also one that King doesn't always share: ‘I think Eisler is appalling.’ King's new work. ‘You . Always you’ is the only one to be premiered and. indeed. was commissioned by the Festival. Although it‘s based on a poem. ‘A Metaphor'. the words are not set and. says King. ‘l'm not writing descriptive music — just using it as a point ofdeparture.‘ The poem is a poignant little metaphor of love as an ever varying needle on a measuring scale written by Roger Musson. ‘It suggests to me. firstly. Romantic line. then. musical obsession — the revolving around a tonic for example.‘ There's a parallel too between ‘on the one hand. an incongruous metaphor juxtaposing science with passion and. on the other. my crude metrical notation which contains a complex
wide—ranging rhythmical language independent of it.‘ Writing for wind quintet. violin. ‘cello. piano and tuned percussion. King is thrilled to have a commission from the Festival. ‘It‘s the first I‘ve ever had. although I have conducted at the Festival before and done things on the Fringe. Lontano is a fantasitc group and ()daline de la Martinez. the Director. is great.‘ ‘You. Always You‘ is around ten minutes long and maybe that sounds short but ‘it's a big work and fairly complex. The second movement is very fast and has about a million notes — the sort of thing to make musicians look at me in the sullen way that musicians do when you've given them too much to do!‘
About the Festival and contemporary music in Scotland generally. King feels ‘Scottish composers are tip in arms and there‘s a real case for positive discrimination for Scottish music. That was probably in the Festival Society‘s mind when they commissioned me. Last year. the only pieces by Scottish composers were mine and Peter Maxwell Davies‘ and sotne things on the Fringe. I‘ve got a feeling that the situation is about to change.‘ That may be. but the more usual paucity of new music must certainly have caught the attention of Sandy (ioehr at last year‘s Festival. as reputedly he approached Festival Director Frank Dunlop in the bar after a concert and asked ‘Why don't you have more contemporary chamber music‘." Dunlop replied ‘()K then. we'll have some more next year — you organise it.‘ Be warned. that‘s what comes of Festival meetings in bars.
Composer's ( 'lioit'e, Alexander
(foe/tr, Queen 's I lall. Si)th ( ‘lt’rk
As the opener of this year’s Festival. ()beron encapsulated in one evening the spirit of the three weeks of Festival waiting to unfold. 'l‘ransforming the Usher l lall into a space for music-theatre was a bold move on Frank Dunlop‘s part, but one that undoubtedly worked. With a set ofmatching. glittering staircases curving up each side of the stage to a raised platform. punctuated by shimmering vertical columns. the audience could almost
have been forgiven for thinking
they‘d arrived at Miss World rather than the Edinburgh Festival. Giving the game away though was the excellent Junge Deutsche Philharmonic. ready to play Weber‘s enchanting score centre stage and a misty Edinburgh Festival Chorus
The List 22 Aug; 4 se—pi'23