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Articles by Alex Laffer

How MacMillan created ballets of unrivalled psychological depth

8 November 2016

The choreographer was obsessed with emotion and behaviour, which manifested itself most memorably in his historical works, Anastasia and Mayerling.

How do you begin to make sense of The Nose?

1 November 2016

Audiences and academics have long tried to understand the Gogol tale that inspired Shostakovich's opera – is it satire taken to extremes, or is it something else entirely?

Re-creating Rhapsody: Costume designer Natalia Stewart on breathing new life into historic designs

15 January 2016

Making William Chappell’s 1980 designs appeal to both contemporary audiences and dancers calls for a huge amount of research and innovation.

What is it about fairytales that continues to fascinate composers and audiences?

30 December 2015

The centuries-old form continues to inspire, even into the 21st century through works such as The Firework-Maker’s Daughter.

‘There is a place for magic in the world’: Philip Pullman and The Firework-Maker’s Daughter

8 December 2015

The award-winning author talks about his Eastern-inspired fairytale and the importance of introducing the arts to children.

The carnivalesque and the grotesque: The Tiger Lillies and Lulu – a Murder Ballad

23 November 2015

The latest stage work from cult band The Tiger Lillies is part of a centuries-long tradition of art that challenges social and cultural conventions.