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The Last Tango - Milton Keynes Theatre

Published by: Alison Smith on 24th Nov 2015 | View all blogs by Alison Smith

Reviewed 23rd November 2015

LT poster

A wonderfully clever set, atmospheric lighting, impressive choreography, choice music and captivating singing, highlight the talents of the Argentine Tango masters, Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone. The applause before their first dance showed the enthusiasm of the audience for this dance duo and The Last Tango did not disappoint.

The story is simple – a mere instrument to show off their dancing expertise. Rummaging through long forgotten belongings in the attic, packing a suitcase to take on the next stage of his life, George (Teddy Kempner) rediscovers his past. His memories are rekindled and translated into dance by Flavia, Vincent and the ensemble. There is passion and heartbreak, the melancholy of Autumn Leaves tugs at the heart strings,and fun and laughter, but above all between two people a love which survives the torments of life.

The story begins in the thirties; the costumes (Vicky Gill) reflect the age, its conservatism and modesty, but the journey across the years to the last, unforgettable tango is filled with a variety of dress and  dancing styles each sparked by a treasured object George has found – a trilby, a glove, a photo.However, the technically perfect vignettes danced by Flavia and Vincent are not mirrored by the ensemble. I found the men clumsy; they seemed unfeeling towards their partners and lifting them seemed at times too much of an effort. The difference must lie in the relationship between the dance partners. It is clear that Vincent treasures Flavia; his concern is to their partnership not his own ability. The men in the ensemble seem to have a more selfish attitude – look at me and how I dance. 

The last dance of Flavia and Vincent, the last tango of the title, is a dazzling, technically impressive dance with perfect synchronisation of two bodies. In their close embrace we see passion and sensuality; the intimacy of the couple, their contact, both physical and emotional, was moving. And the speed of the steps especially the  ganchos, ochos and patadas was breathtaking. In her silver sheath of a dress Flavia moved effortlessly and she and Vincent were as one in their movements. This tango was a fitting last tribute to their partnership, but most of all to their remarkable talent as dancers.

Plays MK Theatre until Saturday 28th November

Bookings 0844 871 7652


1 Comment

  • Cameron Lowe
    by Cameron Lowe 2 years ago
    A lovely review, Alison. Thanks. Sounds like a perfect farewell tour.
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