In 1917, a supergroup of world-famous European artists – Erik Satie, Jean Cocteau, Leonide Massine and Pablo Picasso. collaborated on Parade, a radical new ballet from Serge Diaghilev’s Ballet Russes.
A new reimagined version has been created by NDCWales’ Artistic Director Caroline Finn – and was screened on BBC Four and can be seen on the BBC iPlayer, thanks to a commission from The Space.
Parade subverted many of the artform’s conventions; the setting was a fairground and the ordinary streets of Paris, and the characters included clowns, acrobats, fire-eaters, and carnival acts to attract an audience; the score was inspired by music hall, ragtime, and fairground music; the orchestra’s instruments included a typewriter, a gun, a siren, milk bottles and a foghorn; and some of the dancers’ costumes were made of cardboard.
The modern reimagining of the original Parade features a live score – including all of Satie’s extraordinary instruments – played by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, and highlights of the action captured outside the Wales Millennium Centre where a call to arms in a political rally sets the scene for the on-stage action.
Later in November, online audiences will be able to see more of the events that took place in and around the Millennium Centre, discovering more about the original production and its fresh imagining, along with Marcos Morau’s piece for the company – Tundra.