Top London dance shows this month

Anna Winter gives us a run down of the dance performances you should see in the coming weeks.

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A host of London dance shows are on across the capital this month. From ballet to tap, from street dance to folk tales, there is a wealth of options. The tough choice is where to start.

We’re here to help. Theatre.London’s resident dance expert has put together a handy list of the London dance shows she’s most excited about this month. We’re sure one or two will be up your dance street.


5 Soldiers: The Body Is The Frontline (Yeomanry House, Bloomsbury) – 7 to 9 September

5 Soldiers
5 Soldiers – Top London dance shows

Rosie Kay Dance Company’s intense and athletic piece was created after time spent with the 4th Battalion. It places the body in the centre of 21st-century battle, without offering a moral perspective on warfare.

Requardt & Rosenberg’s DeadClub (The Place) – 9 to 30 September

DeadClub™ at The Place (Image: Manuel Vason)
DeadClub™ at The Place (Image: Manuel Vason)

Theatremakers Frauke Requardt and David Rosenberg are known for their outdoor spectacles and use of binaural sound. Their latest collaboration takes a limited audience on a trip into the darkness of a purpose-built space where fears ferment and memory becomes distorted.

Bridges Y Puentes (Theatre Royal Stratford East/Stratford multi-storey car park, floor 6) – 14 to 16 September

Bridges y Puentes
Bridges y Puentes – Top London dance shows

Six actor-dancers eschew the auditorium and lead an audience on an immersive journey into the urban heart of London for a meditation on migration.

Akram Khan’s Giselle (Sadler’s Wells) – 20 to 23 September

English National Ballet performs Akram Khan's Giselle
English National Ballet performs Akram Khan’s Giselle

By popular demand, English National Ballet brings Akram Khan’s critically acclaimed reworking of the Romantic ballet back to Sadler’s Wells. Instead of white tulle, bonny peasants and enchanted forest glades, expect a vast concrete wall and vulnerable migrant workers in an unspecified industrial time and place. Nevertheless, the source material’s themes of betrayal, heartbreak and madness remain. A specially composed score, by Vincenzo Lamagna, contains haunting echoes of Adolphe Adam’s original music.

Acosta Danza (Sadler’s Wells) – 27 to 30 September

Acosta Danza (Image: Manuel Vason)
Acosta Danza (Image: Manuel Vason) – Top London dance shows

Breathe a sigh of relief because Carlos is back! The charismatic ballet star returns to London, not to take centre stage himself but for the UK debut of his newly minted company. Formed in Havana, Acosta Danza comprises Cuba’s best classical and contemporary dancers. They present works by Cuban choreographers that are rarely seen beyond the island. The company also performs pieces by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and New York City Ballet resident choreographer Justin Peck.

Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland (Royal Opera House) – 27 September to 28 October

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland at Royal Opera House
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland at Royal Opera House

Christopher Wheeldon’s 2011 family-friendly hit returns to the Covent Garden main stage. A corps de ballet of playing cards, a slinky caterpillar and creepy Cheshire Cat all feature, dancing to an energetic contemporary score by Joby Talbot that references 19th-century ballet classics.

The Tempest (Greenwich Theatre) – 27 to 30 September

The Tempest at Greenwich Theatre
The Tempest at Greenwich Theatre

Malawian dancers, singers and actors join British performers and visual artists for Bilimankhwe Arts’s re-imagining of Shakespeare’s late play in bold and humorous style. The show features live music from Malawian singer Ben Mankhamba and choreography by Shyne Phiri.

Flamenco Evolution, Baghdad To Seville (Rich Mix) – 28 September

Flamenco Evolution at Rich Mix
Flamenco Evolution at Rich Mix

Iraqi Oud player Attab Haddad has long been fascinated by the connections between flamenco and Middle Eastern music. This special evening of dance and instrumentation uses traditional melodies and new compositions to trace pathways between Andalusian and Middle Eastern culture.