Irish Soul Ballett

Frankfurt's New Press

"Irish Soul" is performed with authentic music from a live band, with popular traditional tunes, Jigs and Reels bring the elementary feeling of Irish life. Above all, Brian O' Connor, who's various compositions from Jigs and Reels to Airs and Waltzes are simply cheerful and played with soul. 

On holidays in Ireland, van Cauwenbergh was inspired to choreograph his two part ballet, and after successful Irish shows worldwide and especially since Michael Flatley's show became a public magnet, Wiesbaden decided to present its own show from the Shamrock Shore in a classical version. 

First, the audience experiences dew covered grass in fog and marine landscape impressions (stage and light: Thomas Märker). Silhouetted figures rise from the mist, struggling with the sea and wind, telling the story of Ireland's creation. Cauwenberghs intention to choreographically describe the ancient political rivalries of Ireland are unclear. 

With the romantically staged first half, which is driven in part by a brilliant performance from Gaetano Posterino, set in a pub landscape the second half of the show gains momentum and flair. Gone are the subtly aligned dance numbers, the ensemble is now with the musicians in the orchestra pit, the individual dances seem free and improvised. The typical group formations with simple choreography are performed with precision and speed. There are numerous amazing solos and pas de deuxs: like 
the comic number with Carolina Vivet and Dmitri Simkin as an unlikely couple, the coquette, very confident solo by Adeline Pastor, with Fouttés proliferates, the lyrical study with Daniela Severians or the wild jumps of Marcin Kraweskis, to name but a few performers of an excellently trained force. 

A particularly difficult and complicated exchange between Mr Simkin and Posterino, delivering blows, excellently choreographed and known as the "running gag" in the role of the Irish Cobalt repeatedly appearing through the scenes with bizarre jumps and physical distortions. Rarely has a such a medium-sized theatre such distinctive character dancers. Irish Soul "is pure entertainment, pleasant, stirring.

Wiesbadener Daily

Tumltuous applause and ovations for Ben van Cauwenberghs new ballet "Irish Soul" in the State Theatre in Wiesbaden. The idea for this production, a similar success to van Cauwenberghs work "Rock around Baroque", came during a sailing holiday around the rugged cliffs and ports of the "green island". Music, Country and People fascinated him. 

The virtuosity of the soloists and the ensemble is amazing, with their power and intensity, often haunting and always noticeable. A deep insight to emotions, rain and marine sounds set the scenery for the appearance of the Leprechaun, a figure of Irish mythology. Gaetano Posterino appears again and again, dances the part of the Cobalt with unbelievable smoothness, and with some bizarre deviousness. After this introduction the ballet troupe mixes  with the musicians in the orchestra pit. 

Van Cauwenbergh hit the atmosphere of an Irish pub on the head. Individually and collectively, the dancers take to the stage, shine with impressive solo performances, Irish styles and gestures, slightly paradoxical footwork, with the usual precision. In a mainly male dominated scene, very colourful, (Marcin Krajewski, Breno Bittencourt Court, Dmitri Simkin and Marek Tuma) dance in the "local" in high spirited form, but then have to face the equally strong Women (Irena Veterova, Adeline Pastor, Carolina Vivet, Isabelle Moirt and Daniela Severian). See it if you can or miss one of this years best productions, from start to finish a pleasure.

Wiesbadener Express

Irish Soul BallettA six piece live band, five Irish men, play songs and dance music with a typical Irish sound, often with longing melancholy. Especially in the latter half of the show the audience clap feverously. The music gives the evening contour, and the dancers a framework.

After the first half, the ballet comes to life. Comic artistry fill the stage and in the pub the atmosphere heats up as do the musicians and audience. Now we are in real Ireland with lads who drink, fight, love and have a large portion of black humour. Through all the scenes the Leprechaun haunts us (terrific: Gaetano Posterino), a brilliant Irish legend. The troupe intensifies to poetic mimicry and dance par excellence. Everything fits together. The step sequences mix refined Folk Dance with fine Neoclassical. Responding distantly and cold to the courting efforts of the small Dimitrij Simkins, the tall and beautiful Vivet Carolina eventually warms to him as his exciting rotations and incredible acrobatics ultimately soften her heart. The technically formidable duo's of Irena Veterova and Marcin Krajewski or Isabelle Moirt with Marek Tuma reveal lyrical soul in a raw shell. Adeline Pastor, Daniela Severian and Breno Bittencourt amaze with noble and elegant solos. Towards the end, the pace and ferocity of the music and choreography increase to an orgasmic finale in which all participants rise to unmeasured heights.