‘Wilh short legs and along body, I ain't got a classical ligure! Why bang your head against a brick wall. My body was not right tor ballet. You have to be a realist.‘
This realist, David Toguri. choreographer ol Scottish Dpera's new production ot Street Scene, took his unclassical body to New York City in the early 60s and went commercial. ‘Dnce I switched over, choreographers started asking me to work with them. It even helped being oriental then because I stood out.‘ Oil to a quick start on Broadway, he moved to Britain and was asked by Marie Rambert to choreograph in an adventurous programme which put live new choreographers with live young designers. ‘She was a magical lady and managed to talk me into choreographing without music.‘ With a lucky star lighting his path. Toguri on that occasion was paired with another luture talent, the designerwho went on to create Lloyd Webber‘s CATS.
Armed with a clutch ol lavourable reviews. Toguri began to develop a choreographic conlidence which opened a Pandora‘s Box ol stars and starcompanies waiting lor his talents. With a wide-eyed enthusiasm which belies his thirty years' experience. he reels oll a list at lilm and theatre directors, actors and pop stars with the kind at lluency and charm which would make him an ideal char-show candidate. Tina Turner, Paul McCartney, David Bowie. Mick Jagger lall among shows like Hair and Guys and Dolls and lilms like Absolute Beginners and the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
With a theatre career lounded in his job at the Young Vic in 1970 (at 225, he had to supplement his income with spots on TV as a dancer). Toguri broadened his connections to the pop world with ease. Both theatre and pop star require speed, patience and 1, understanding. With someone like Tina ' Turner at the receiving end of your -" “T? I ‘ _ direction, there is no use ‘having grand ideas’. ‘Good people like that.‘ says Toguri, ‘are the hardest workers. Each ‘ time working with them islike takinga ‘ . test. I have to be inventive everytime.‘ Equally, working lorthe stage. he must
agreement thev added a black man Maueeri‘s 1077‘) production first l.emper has hit the number one slot know me scrim and actors inside out to the already cosmopolitan cast. An opened for ltlst four nights in New in the ‘erossover‘ alhum chm-is, bemre he can buim their movements autohiographical figure is also ' York. on a night w hen the ! Mauceri plans to continue his NM 3 s‘rangerm Glasgow Toguri it; provided in the shape of Sam fantasticallv influential New York . investigation of neglected leth rapt bythe city‘s growth sinée he las‘ (‘1;[letit.'tlte law-student son of a 'I'I'muv staff was on strike. l)espite centurv works. including. perhaps. visited when on tourwim Hairin1968 ra 1 1i.w 10.118 Weill did. falls fora ; the lack of a review. however. the \Veill’s ( )ld 'I‘estament o tera 'I'ht' ' . gentile girl. - remaining lhrce show s sold out , lilemu/ Road. ‘\‘\'hi|C wcl'rc doing l goerhrgzztigtaoqd dark. ‘It's reallv touching.~ savs Mauceri. ; within twenty-four hours on the slit/t1 and l'ruviuru and [hm cons'idering buying a "at here “is ‘lIecEusc; itl doesn't ask for much. just strength of word of mouth. the ‘ (hm-mun". which is still the centre of famastic The people are beami'ul the “ te 'tnt. 7e gentle." And because 5 production was brought hack the our re Wertoire. I feel it's verv i - - . ° ' ' that plea goes unanswered it’s ; following season and then bromimsi imporlant to look at works that were 5 :?t:t£::tehs so shattering. Like all great works of on television. considered failures in their own ? American expansiveness but real Western music it ultimater is meant I ‘We have to tell people how “mu. “ hid] “(mm hcncm m”. sincerity to encourage Us to behave hetter ' exciting it is in the opera house .' sa_vs looking at and performing again. In l It ms mic mood of his work He has his. towards each other. It's vastlv Mattceri. taking the hull of opera's one sense it's new and \Vc‘klftivs' singer/dancers snapping oui a big yap i entertaining. but also I think the elitist image h_v the horns. "l'he real we‘re on the forefront of something. number a dozen G|asgow children l suddcst 0pc” “c CV” Cundlwlul- I “"N’” “illl ml“ l‘kVPIL' .L‘” 10 the ()n the other hand we all understand working'on their Streetwise parts and l 'l thinkitwillappealvervmuchto operaishecauseit is soentertaining. its continuitv with thy hisltn'v'nf the restonhe cast overeigmy O'them the people of(i|asgow as it did to the i so moving. so exhilarating.~ lle operatic theatre. which is completelv “mbering up ‘s'rée‘ Scene is ‘ people ofNew York hecaus‘e . I recommends 8mm! .St't'llt’ audiences obvious to us. so in a way it‘s the - immediate. peome who go to musicals ; l ~ . r , ~ ' l l” “f” P“! h‘“ tenementlivmg, something people in because of the wealth and povertv 1 alreadv been proven in Maueeri's Swirls/i ()pt'ru's new[um/mum; ul' Glas 0“, know a“ about ' and hccuuw “l lhc 9”ch- “l lhk‘ Dillch l‘SA. where a recording of .S‘Irt't'l Scene H/N'IH a! Theatre lv’uvti/. g i CllY-i \Veill songs he made with l'te t (i/(zs‘quu' (m [mm/at it t/mv. ' l J
the List 1‘) Max l.lune 198911