Rehearsals have begun at Curve, Leicester for multi award-winning choreographer and dancer Akram Khan’s Until the Lions, his highly anticipated, brand-new full-length production. Premiering in the 360° setting of London’s Roundhouse, the inspiration for the piece which Khan will choreograph and perform in is taken from the ancient Sanskrit epic The Mahabharata. Set to be one of his most startling and introspective works to date, the piece will run for 12 performances in London from 9 January 2016 before beginning an international tour and returning to co-commissioners Curve, Leicester.
Rediscovering his classical roots, Khan’s inspiration for the work is taken from the Indian dance form Kathak and combined with contemporary dance. Until the Lions will explore themes of gender and sexuality, following Amba, a princess abducted on her wedding day who seeks revenge from the gods. It will mark Khan’s return to the epic tale, having begun his professional career performing in Peter Brook’s own decade-defining production in 1985.
For this extraordinary work, Khan will reunite with some of the artistic collaborators behind his Olivier Award-winning production DESH, including visual artist Tim Yip, lighting designer Michael Hulls, writer and poet Karthika Naïr and dramaturg Ruth Little. Khan will perform alongside two of his company dancers, Ching-Ying Chien and Christine Joy Ritter. Accompanying these three extraordinary performers live on stage will be singers Sohini Alam and David Azurza, percussionist Yaron Engler and composer Vincenzo Lamagna.
As one of the dance world’s most respected figures, Khan has created an influential body of work, collaborating with an impressive range of performers and artists including Juliette Binoche, Sylvie Guillem, Anish Kapoor, Antony Gormley, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Nitin Sawhney. Khan’s work for the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony was met with unanimous acclaim.
Until the Lions was initiated by the 360° Network of round artistic venues across the world. The show is produced by Akram Khan Company (Farooq Chaudhry), and co-produced by Roundhouse/Sadler’s Wells, MC2: Grenoble, La Comète Châlons-en-Champagne, Théâtre de la Ville Paris, Danse Danse/TOHU Montréal, Les Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg, New Vision Arts Festival Hong Kong, Taipei Performing Arts Center, Movimentos Festwochen Wolfsburg, Brighton Festival 2016, Maison de la Culture d’Amiens, Concertgebouw Brugge, Holland Festival Amsterdam, Romaeuropa Festival and Curve Leicester.
Supported by Arts Council England.
International tour dates are still to be announced.
This production is a partial adaptation of Until the Lions, a retelling in verse of the Mahabharata by Karthika Naïr (forthcoming from HarperCollins India & Arc Publications, UK).
UNTIL THE LIONS
Directed and choreographed by Akram Khan
Co-produced by Akram Khan Company, Roundhouse and Sadler’s Wells
Chalk Farm Road, London, NW1 8EH
Saturday 9 January – Sunday 24 January 2016, 7.30pm (no performances: Sunday 10 Jan; Wednesday 13 Jan; Sunday 17 Jan; Thursday 21 Jan)
Box office: 0300 6789 222
Tickets: £10 – £34