92nd Street Y Harkness Dance Festival
Ailey Citigroup Theater, New York
March 14-18, 2007
Reviewed by Naomi Abrahami
Pictured: Jae Mon Joo
Photographer: Julie Lemberger
One does not just watch a dance by Zvi Gotheiner. One enters a world with its own internal logic, a sensual, organic world of movement, language, and images where one is pulled along by currents unseen and inevitable.
Gertrud, billed as a tribute to Gotheiner's mentor Gertrud Kraus, flows at a relatively calm pace. It opens with a single dancer receiving instructions to, for example, turn their head toward nine o'clock, walk three steps in the direction of two o'clock, etc. On the backdrop are the rows of mysterious “dancing stick figures” that Gotheiner, in the program notes, has told us Kraus kept in her notebook after she stopped choreographing. As the layers of the piece unfold through the repeated riff-like instructions from dancer to dancer, shifts of scenery, and dramatic vignettes, one gets the picture of an intense, demanding, unpredictable woman whose influence on the then-17 year old Gotheiner was enormous. Neither saccharine nor melodramatic, but laced with affection and humor, Gertrud transcends the personal, evolving into a meditation on the process of becoming an artist and the act of creation.
A rhythmic, driving, propulsive piece, Les Noces (marriage or wedding party) provided a welcome contrast to the quieter, more reflective Gertrud. Once again, Gotheiner allows his work time to unfold. A woman sitting alone on a bench is called to movement by a sudden, siren-like sound. Others join her. The men and women face each other on low, black benches. Touching one another's hair, they tentatively check one another out. Various couplings are tried on and discarded. Pairs form: men and women, women together, men together. Conflict arises and is resolved. A single couple is chosen and the dancers unite in celebration, forming a circle that keeps turning even when broken. Space is left for the missing person to return.
In its affirmation of humanity, Les Noces might remind the viewer of Martha Graham's Acts of Light, with it final stage full of dancers striving separately, but in unison, toward a common vision. Here, as the dancers of the wedding party rush to place benches beneath the feet of the bride and groom as they symbolically walk down the aisle, we are left with the image of a community supporting its own on an unknown journey to which even the main players are blind. Yet, with confidence and hope they walk forward into the future.
Last night was not your average Thursday at Bay Ridge Ballet in Brooklyn, New York. Studio owner and teacher Patty Foster Grado—a former Parsons Dance Company dancer—was teaching a boys class, when with only five minutes left, she heard commotion in the waiting area and someone yelled, "There's a lady giving birth in the bathroom!"
The dancers file into an audition room. They are given a number and asked to wait for registration to finish before the audition starts. At the end of the room, behind a table and a computer (and probably a number of mobile devices), there I sit, doing audio tests and updating the audition schedule as the room fills up with candidates. The dancers, more nervous than they need to be, see me, typing, perhaps teasing my colleagues, almost certainly with a coffee cup at my side.
Where can you watch Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, The Nutcracker, Coppélia and Le Corsaire all in one place? Hint: It also has extra-buttery popcorn.
Yep, it's your local movie theater. Starting this weekend, theaters across the country will be showing Bolshoi Ballet productions of classical and contemporary story ballets.
When commercial dancer Danielle Peazer took on an ambassadorial role with Reebok in early 2016, she didn't realize the gig would also lead to a career shift. But while traveling with and teaching workshops for the brand, the idea for DDM (Danielle's Dance Method) Collective started to take shape.
Last night, American Ballet Theatre held its annual Fall Gala at the David H. Koch Theater in New York City. To celebrate ABT's artistic director Kevin McKenzie's 25 years of leadership, dancers from ABT's company, apprentices, studio company members and students from the Jaqueline Kennedy Onassis School took to the stage in Jessica Lang's The Gift, Alexei Ratmansky's Songs of Bukovina and Christopher Wheeldon's Thirteen Diversions.
But we also love a good behind-the-scenes glimpse—especially when designer gowns are involved. And the dancers gave us plenty of glam looks to obsess over once the curtains closed. Ahead, see our favorite moments from gala straight from the dancers.
Last week Ballet West breezed into New York City's Joyce Theater from Salt Lake City. The dancers are excellent—especially the women (what else is new). The company brought five pieces including works by Gerald Arpino, Val Caniparoli and resident choreographer Nicolo Fonte.
Arpino's last work, made in 2004, is a duet called RUTH, Ricordi per Due ("remembrance for two"). It's about a man haunted by the memory of the woman he loved. Christopher Ruud is strong and sensitive as the man, and Arolyn Williams is riveting as the ghost of his beloved.
Val Caniparoli energizes his dancers with juicy movement, and always sticks to his theme. (He doesn't ramble, and let's face it, long rambling choreography is a problem these days.) In his premiere for Ballet West, Dances for Lou, he takes on the music of Lou Harrison, a composer known for his Eastern sounds and rhythms.
Photo by Filip VanRoe, courtesy Marquee
Your Saturday nights are about to go from "Netflix and chill" to "Marquee and chill." (Okay, maybe we'll need to coin a new phrase).
But seriously, the new streaming app Marquee Arts TV lets you curl up with Bolshoi Ballet's Swan Lake, Sylvie Guillem dancing Mats Ek's solo Bye, a dance film by Cullberg Ballet called 40 M Under, or a documentary about Alonzo King and LINES Ballet. Marquee unlocks a world of digital arts: dance, theater, opera, music, documentaries and film shorts that you can stream directly to your TV or mobile device.
When Simone Forti moved from California to New York City in 1960, she brought with her the improvisational approach of Anna Halprin. As one of the first five students in Robert Dunn's John Cage–inspired composition course (that led to Judson Dance Theater), she was a magnet for two others in that class: Yvonne Rainer and Steve Paxton. This month the three reunite for Tea for Three, an evening of moving and talking at Danspace Project, Oct. 26–28. It's a chance to see how dance mavericks grow and change and mellow. Forti will also give "Body Mind World" workshops Oct. 19–20. danspaceproject.org.