REJOICE IN THE LAMB (2014)
Richard Alston Dance Company
Benjamin Britten - Rejoice in the Lamb
Originally danced by a cast of
5 women 5 men
Filmed by Marco Benozzi at Exeter Northcott Theatre.
Edited by Steve Jackman. Produced by The Place.
Rejoice in the Lamb, a poem by Christopher Smart, was brought to the attention of Benjamin Britten soon after the long-lost work was rediscovered. Smart suffered from a form of religious mania and the words lurch from genius to insanity, verse by verse. The dance tries to reflect these extremes and the innocent fervour of Smart's faith.
This cantata was commissioned by a remarkable man, Walter Hussey. As Dean of Chichester in later years, Hussey lived in the shadow of the Cathedral and my grandparents were his neighbours. As a teenager I often visited the Dean to see his remarkable collection of contemporary pictures and sculpture. He thus instilled in me the dream of one day being an artist and so influenced the entire course of my life.
Rejoice in the Lamb received its premiere at the Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury on 12 February 2014.
Co-commissioned by The Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury and Peak Performances @ Montclair State University.