Lyric Pieces
Jessica Lang Dance performing Lyric Pieces
Photo by Christopher Jones

Premiered in

8 (4 men, 4 women)

22 minutes

Commissioned by
Birmingham Royal Ballet

Restaged on
Jessica Lang Dance (2017 - present)
Ballet West (2016)
Birmingham Royal Ballet (2013, 2015)

This piece was co-commissioned by the International Dance Festival Birmingham.

“Paving the way for female choreographers and leaders in the arts, Jessica Lang delivers a stunning example of acting as an 'advocate for true change.'”
- Beth Baker-Wyse, The National Student, February 23, 2015
“Lang should be praised for her ability to turn dance into an understandable language.”
- Dean Eastmond, Redbrick, February 20, 2015
“Lang made the piece for BRB just three years ago, and what a valuable addition to the company's rep it is.”
“it worked brilliantly, a fascinating concept...the highlight of the night for me.”
“The American choreographer's innovative delightful.”
“an elegant installation of art in motion. This symphony of music, dance and sculpture is a real joy, creating true harmony for the eyes and ears.”
- Elizabeth Rooke, Henley Standard, May 24, 2013
“it is a delight. There is a clean fresh air about this group of dances...”
“this is light-as-a-feather work of the utmost good taste - in fact just plain gorgeous”
- Bruce Marriott, DanceTabs, October 25, 2012
“Lang's choreography was intelligent, original and subtle”
“The company rallied spectacularly in what turned out to be the night's highlight. Lyric Pieces, a commission by the American choreographer Jessica Lang,...feels incredibly fresh and alive...Lang's Lyric Pieces is an engaging and visually dynamic creation that wonderfully animates Birmingham's dancers and plays to their strengths.”
“Lang has an exceptional stage imagination...A fascinatingly organic relationship develops between set and choreography as the patterns of the dance form around the logic of the paper designs, and new landscapes are conjured to suit the musical affect of each piano piece...The stage is alive with pure dance imagery...Lang was formerly a dancer with Twyla Tharp, and like Tharp she has the gift of cramming together an eclectic range of colours and ideas without losing thought with her individual sensibility. I'm already impatient to see more of her work.”
- Judith Mackrell, The Guardian, October 24, 2012
“Lightly mysterious and wittily mischievous it is a fine example of ultra-modern lyricism.”
- Neil Normon,, September 27, 2012
“With eight dancers and a set of lengths of concertinaed black craft paper creating a variety of spaces, it is variously moving, dramatic, witty and outright funny.”
“immediately attractive and accessible, with a tongue-in-cheek soulfulness.”
- Charles Hunt, The Press, May 15, 2012
“The costumes were plain, the set was bare and the eight dancers were accompanied by a single piano; yet, the effect was lasting.”
- Lauren Hunter and Lizzie Baxter, Nouse, May 14, 2012
“The fully-fledged star of this performance by BRB's small-scale variant is unquestionably the opening work: a new and specially commissioned piece by American choreographer Jessica Lang, who learned her skills with the legendary Twyla Tharp. It shows. Lyric Pieces, set to Edvard Grieg's piano music, is a stunning confirmation that classical technique - with a few tweaks - can be as starkly and engagingly direct as the contemporary style.”
- Dick Godfrey, The Journal, May 10, 2012
“Lyric Pieces by Jessica Lang was of the best things I've seen this year...What Lang has is a terrific eye for line and the harmonious sculpture of bodies - nothing shouted... This was a stunning and gentle piece and I hope we see more of Lang in the UK. A huge and refreshing change from the aggressive nature of much new work these days."”
- Bruce Marriott, DanceTabs, May 9, 2012
“Jessica Lang has created a ballet of dreams and romantic moods which succeeds beautifully, since it provides the dancers with lyrical partnerings and solos, involving discreet but subterranean emotions, which both touch the heart and delight the eye.”
- Richard Edmonds, The Stage Reviews, May 9, 2012
“Lyric Pieces showed an impressive sureness in its handling of a wide range of moods...Fresh, subtle, and really beautiful.”
“"The highlight, without doubt, was American choreographer Jessica Lang's elegant and slightly understated 'Lyric Pieces'...Sets, dance and music all come together in a real feast, the stage being decorated with huge rolls and fans of kraft paper that are folded and unfolded by the dancers. It reminded me of that crinkly paper that you used get in the top of boxes of chocolates. Appropriately, and just like your favourites, the dance was one tasty bite after another."”

Edvard Grieg

Set Design
Molo Designers, Stephanie Forsythe and Todd MacAllen

Costume Design
Elena Comendador

Lighting Design
Nicole Pearce

Past Performances
May 3-4, 2012Birmingham, UKMore Info
May 8-9, 2012Durham County, EnglandMore Info
May 11-12, 2012Yorkshire, EnglandMore Info
May 15-16, 2012Derbyshire, EnglandMore Info
September 26-29, 2012Birmingham, UKMore Info
October 23-24, 2012London, EnglandMore Info
May 10-11, 2013Cheltenham, UKMore Info
May 14-15, 2013Poole, UKMore Info
May 17-18, 2013Truro, UKMore Info
May 21-22, 2013High Wycombe, UKMore Info
January 31, 2015Birmingham, UKMore Info
February 18-21, 2015Birmingham, UKMore Info
March 24-25, 2015Devon, UKMore Info
May 20-28, 2016Salt Lake City, UTMore Info
July 5-9, 2017Becket, MAMore Info
January 10-14, 2018New York, NYMore Info
February 5, 2018Naples, FLMore Info
March 17, 2018Madison, WIMore Info
March 24, 2018Brookfield, WIMore Info
April 14, 2018Portland, MEMore Info
April 18, 2018Storrs, CTMore Info
April 21, 2018Burlington, VTMore Info
May 10, 2018Omaha, NEMore Info
May 18, 2018Louisville, KYMore Info
September 28, 2018Irvine, CAMore Info
October 5, 2018Boulder, COMore Info
November 14, 2018Gettysburg, PAMore Info
January 24, 2019East Lansing, MIMore Info
January 26, 2019Pittsburgh, PAMore Info
February 28-March 2, 2019San Francisco, CAMore Info
October 1, 2018Voice of OCMore Info
May 19, 201889.3 WFPLMore Info
July 8, 2017Arts JournalMore Info
July 6, 2017Boston GlobeMore Info
May 28, 2016The Utah ReviewMore Info
May 23, 2016The Salt Lake TribuneMore Info
February 19, 2015The TelegraphMore Info
February 19, 2015Birmingham MailMore Info
February 19, 2015Native MonsterMore Info
February 19, 2015Tamworth HeraldMore Info
June 21, 2013Hopkins ReviewMore Info
May 24, 2013Henley StandardMore Info
May 23, 2013Oxford TimesMore Info
May 13, 2013Stage TalkMore Info
October 25, 2012DanceTabsMore Info
October 25, 2012One Stop ArtsMore Info
October 25, 2012The TimesMore Info
October 24, 2012The GuardianMore Info
May 16, 2012Manchester Theatre AwardsMore Info
May 15, 2012The IndependentMore Info
May 15, 2012The PressMore Info
May 14, 2012NouseMore Info
May 10, 2012The JournalMore Info
May 9, 2012DanceTabsMore Info
May 9, 2012The Stage ReviewsMore Info
May 8, 2012Lichfield LiveMore Info
May 4, 2012Critical DanceMore Info
May 13, 2016The Salt Lake TribuneMore Info
November 1, 2014Entrechat MagazineMore Info