LONDON — The spirit of Leonard Cohen on stage.
Sadler’s Wells, the London contemporary dance theater, will present “Dance Me,” a dance production by Canadian company Ballets Jazz Montréal that Cohen approved before his death in November 2016.
From Tuesday to Feb. 11, the show will be making its U.K. debut since it started touring in 2017.
The show will tell the story of Cohen’s life through his songs and poetry, including “Suzanne,” “First We Take Manhattan” and a live version of “Dance Me to the End of Love” that was recorded in London for his 18th album.
“It’s an 80-minute show with no intermission, it’s a journey,” Alexandra Damiani, the new director of the show, told WWD.
In 2021, she took over from Louis Robitaille, who commissioned the original work.
“I put a little bit of my DNA of looking at the identity approach to making sure that there is an elegance in it with a deep attention to detail inside the dance,” Damiani added.
Dancers and choreographers Andonis Foniadakis, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa and Ihsan Rustem have all helped in staging the production for a contemporary audience.
“Foniadakis is from Greece, so it’s very dynamic and physical. He finds his musicality is not necessarily going with the music, but rather finds those little cracks right in between the beats for contrasting moments with the music,” said Damiani.
Damiani started her career as a ballet dancer; she was the ballet mistress and then artistic director with New York’s Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet from 2005 to 2015.