Listen: Liam Scarlett on Viscera
ROH Insights: The new Royal Ballet Artist in Residence creates a visceral feast.
Liam Scarlett created his “hell for leather” ballet Viscera in just ten days with Miami City Ballet earlier this year. At a recent ROH Insights event, he led a fast and furious rehearsal and explained to the audience how a chance meeting in the ROH lift with Edward Villella, Artistic Director of Miami City Ballet, led to the commission. Liam has been deep in rehearsals to bring this American creation to Covent Garden in the triple bill alongside Christopher Wheeldon’s Fool’s Paradise and Wayne McGregor’s Infra.
And visceral it certainly is. When Royal Ballet dancer Meaghan Grace Hinkis is told to stare an audience member in the eye to “freak them out” it’s clear we’re no longer in Sugar Plum Fairy territory. After raiding his back catalogue of inspirational music, Liam selected Lowell Liebermann’s 1983 Piano Concerto No. 1. Lieberman’s fiercely percussive score drives the gut wrenching choreography, turning the Royal Ballet dancers into a pack of wild animals.
Listen to Liam describe his creative process and the inspiration behind Viscera: