Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (The Trocks) opened in London this week to kick off their UK tour. The New York based all-male company bring both remarkable skill and immense laughter with their production that captures 19thcentury Russian ballet in a completely different way. With male dancers in tutus, tiaras and pointe shoes, they’re an extraordinary company that give a truly unforgettable performance.
Tory Dobrin’s all-male company have not only made a name for themselves in comedy ballet, but now their sheer talent and performance is put on the map. These world-class performances do versions of famous ballets with heart, humour and superb technique. With programs like Ru Paul’s Drag Race on the rise, the company are highly on trend which is bound to attract young people to the wonderful world of ballet.
The Trocks open with Act II of Swan Lake from Tchaikovsky’s iconic ballet. The swans have a few tantrums and there are lots of laughs from the audience when they tumble into one another because their slapstick approach is absolutely marvellous. However, they aren’t just here for the laughs because the precision of the movement is just astounding. Watching these men dance en pointe with such integrity is mesmerising. With the intricately detailed tutus and flawless make up, you really do forget you’re not watching female ballerinas.
The Harlequinade pas de deux with Long Zou and Takaomi Yoshino is a real piece of beauty. Their charming performance is delivered with sublime chemistry and rich characterisation. This is also reflected in Duane Gosa’s Dying Swan which is the real highlight of the production. With inventive costume and design, Gosa’s performance is spectacularly performed with sharp pointe work and effortlessly commanding stage presence.
Having toured to the UK many times, I’m aware there are less physical jokes in the latest production as they subtly shift towards showcasing the remarkable talent of the company. However, when there are jokes, they are ridiculously funny and the dancers’ comedy timing clearly comes naturally.
Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo are different, relevant, contemporary and fresh. As each dancer has both their male and female persona, the versatility of the entire company is truly mind-blowing. It’s a modern take on ballet that will bring in audiences of old and new to witness the tremendous finesse of the dancers and have a damn good night at the theatre. It’s pure joy watching this one-of-a-kind company that embodies skill, style and a whole lot of flair.
On in London at the Peacock Theatre until the 22nd of September before continuing on tour across the UK with Dance Constortium, tickets and information can be found online here.