Matthew Bourne (Swan Lake, Nutcracker, The Car Man, Edward Scissorhands) visits Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts for the very first time this week, to present Early Adventures, a triple bill of his early works. Bourne himself will be hosting a post-show talk on Tuesday 15 May.

Spitfire, Town and Country and The Infernal Galop – make up the triple bill of the works that launched Bourne’s career and cemented the company’s reputation for wit, style and sheer entertainment and Matthew Bourne has assembled an impressive cast of experienced stars and exciting young talent.

Spitfire
Bourne’s first hit in 1988 is both a celebration of masculine vanity and an affectionate comment on the preening grandeur of the classical male dancer. It places the most famous 19th Century ballet showstopper in the world of men’s underwear advertising and mail order catalogue photography.

Town and Country
Remembered as the piece that most crystallized the Bourne style; witty and ironic but also moving and heartfelt. It explores notions of national character from a bygone era through the evocative music of Edward Elgar, Noel Coward and Percy Grainger, amongst others. This 1991 two part dance revue features a high speed version of the classic film, Brief Encounter, a furtive encounter between two repressed gents, a jolly clog dance with a violent conclusion, a daringly wild ride on children’s scooters and an eccentric version of Pomp and Circumstance played on the ukelele!

The Infernal Galop
A breakthrough hit in 1989, and inspired by icons of France in the 1930s and 1940s; Edith Piaf, Charles Trenet, Tino Rossi, Jacques Tati etc. Through a series of surprising and saucy vignettes this is France as seen by the uptight English imagination with all the traditional clichés joyously paraded for our entertainment and climaxing in Offenbach’s inevitable Can-Can!

Matthew Bourne comments, “Early Adventures sees the company return to its roots to help celebrate our 25th Anniversary. Many of the venues that we are returning to on this tour, will not have had an “adventures” show for over 20 years. All of the pieces on this programme were created with a desire to entertain and to share some of the music and cultural icons that I grew up loving. I’m excited to have the rare chance to revive this work again, and hope that audiences will enjoy seeing how the company started out and come and celebrate with us”