Don't Miss Ailey at Lincoln Center
This week is the last chance to see favorite dancers Alicia Graf Mack, Antonio Douthit-Boyd and Kirven Douthit-Boyd of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Sigh. All three will relocate to St. Louis after this season. (I always loved Alicia’s "Why I Dance.") We’re now in the second week of Ailey’s two-week season at the Koch Theater, so there’s still time to see these three dancers—their farewell performances are on June 21—and the rest of this terrific company in their expanded repertoire.
I saw a smashing program last night of four pieces that repeats on Thursday. First, the plunging-into-ice-water shock of Wayne McGregor’s knotty, exhilarating Chroma. Second, Ron Brown’s enduring Grace, a ceremonial invocation inflected with earthy, West African oppositions. Third: Robert Battle’s short, zesty, witty Takademe, performed with awesome precision and power by Jamar Roberts (read about the magnificent Roberts in our recent cover story.) And finally, Revelations. Ah Revelations. It was a special treat for me to be sitting with two young men who had never seen it live before (one of them being my son). Matthew Rushing’s spine is like a wave in the water in "Wade in the Water." And I realized that I love every step in "Rocka My Soul." The encore had us all jouncing and clapping in our seats.
Revelations. Photo by Manny Hernandez.
(I talked about other recent works like Hofesh Shechter’s Uprising, Jacqulyn Buglisi’s Suspended Women and Matthew Rushing’s Odetta in this posting.)
Christopher Wheeldon’s ethereal After the Rain has its last viewing on Saturday. Exodus, Rennie Harris’ world premiere, which I haven’t seen yet, repeats this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
A special bonus for Ailey goers this week: In your program will be an invitation to take a class at Ailey Extension for free! To find out more, click here. For a full schedule of the season, click here. See the company now, before they go off to Paris and South Africa!
Booking a gig on a cruise ship can feel like you're diving into the unknown—dropping everything to live in the middle of the ocean without family, friends or cell service. But cruise jobs can also offer incredible rewards, like traveling the world for free and delving into a new style.
Is ship life the right fit for you? Here are some elements to consider.
We knew that New York downtown dance darling Okwui Okpokwasili was a big deal. Critics and audiences have been raving about her dance-theater works for years, and the new documentary about her, Bronx Gothic, has attracted the attention of the larger arts community.
But never in our wildest dreams did we imagine she'd show up in a Jay Z video, along with flex dancer Storyboard P. Though we're slightly less surprised to see Storyboard in Jay Z's "4:44" video than we were to see Okpokwasili, we're jazzed that two of our favorites are featured on such a huge platform. (We're also feeling #blessed that we didn't have to subscribe to Tidal to watch this.)
Throughout the years, choreographer Seán Curran has worked with a diverse array of talented collaborators—from Kyrgyz music ensemble Ustatshakirt Plus to the the Grammy Award–winning King's Singers. But perhaps none are as meaningful as his most recent group of co-choreographers: At-risk teens from the after school program and nonprofit The Wooden Floor.
Curran has been in residence with The Wooden Floor since June, where he's worked with students to build choreography based on their lives and communities:
Their creation will be shown July 20-22 at The Wooden Floor Studio Theatre in Santa Ana, California.
"Besides the stage, baking is my other happy place," says New York City Ballet corps member Jenelle Manzi.
Four years ago, she thought her baking days were over when she was diagnosed with gluten intolerance. Manzi had been dealing with pain, frequent illness and joint inflammation for nearly 10 years. Once she cut out gluten, Manzi gradually started to feel better, noticing a transformation in how her body felt and functioned. She found her joints were less inflamed, and she got sick less often.
New York City Ballet soloist Unity Phelan and American Ballet Theatre soloist Cassandra Trenary spend every day making their hard work look effortless and graceful both in the studio and onstage. That's exactly what makes them the perfect spokesmodels for the dance-inspired activewear line, Belle Force.
To celebrate our 90th anniversary, we excavated some of our favorite hidden gems from the DM Archives—images that capture a few of the moments in time we've documented over the decades.
This image was captured during a 1978 New York City Ballet tour that took the company to Copenhagen—home turf for Adam Luders (right), who trained at the Royal Danish Ballet School and briefly danced with the company before joining NYCB as a principal dancer in 1975. Next to Luders is (of course) George Balanchine, in conversation with ballerina Suzanne Farrell. And looking on with a smile? NYCB's current ballet master in chief Peter Martins.
On March 8, 2016, Rami Shafi found himself inspired to film an impromptu dance video of his best friend, Aaron Moses Robin, improvising on Gay St. in New York City's Greenwich Village. Thus was born Pedestrian Wanderlust, a collection of dance videos that has grown to include a monthly improv jam.
Shafi works with anyone who wants to take part in the project, filming videos in locations chosen by the dancers and later adding music. The videos are shot on Shafi's iPhone in one take and, other than the starting and ending points, are entirely improvised. The editing afterwards—including the music choice—is minimal. "I don't like to edit too much. It's just what it is," says Shafi. "I usually can do the editing on the train ride home."