David Hallberg to Direct ABT's New Choreography Initiative
Today, American Ballet Theatre announced a new initiative to foster the development of choreography by company members and freelance dancemakers. Aptly titled ABT Incubator, the program, directed by principal David Hallberg, will give selected choreographers the opportunity to spend two weeks workshopping new dances.
"It has always been my vision to establish a process-oriented hub to explore the directions ballet can forge now and in the future," said Hallberg in a press release from the company. Interested? Here's how you can apply to participate.
David Hallberg will direct ABT's new choreography initiative. Photo by Kate Longley, Courtesy The Australian Ballet.
The Application Process
Now through August 31, interested choreographers are invited to submit a proposal for a new work. (For full details on how to apply, click here.) A select group will then be invited to a September 18 audition.
Who will chose the participating choreographers? The panel includes esteemed voices from ABT—Hallberg, artistic director Kevin McKenzie and artist in residence Alexei Ratmansky (no pressure)—plus choreographers Jessica Lang and Lar Lubovitch (both of whose work has been performed by the company) and Danspace Project executive director Judy Hussie-Taylor.
Then, the chosen choreographers will get down to business: October 31 to November 10, they'll enjoy two concentrated weeks of creative time at ABT's Manhattan facilities. In addition to free studio space, they'll have access to dancers from ABT and the Studio Company, plus a stipend, additional collaborators, panel discussions and mentorships.
According to a press release from the company, the Incubator "is committed to providing a focused lab to generate and inspire ideas for the creation of new work." Though it's unclear what exactly will happen to these works after a private studio showing on November 10, ABT Incubator is a promising step toward nurturing new choreographic talent.
We're crossing our fingers that it will grow to be as successful as New York City Ballet's affiliated New York Choreographic Institute, which helped opened the door for in-house names like Justin Peck and Lauren Lovette. Perhaps we'll see the work of one (or several) Incubator choreographers eventually onstage at ABT or danced by its Studio Company.
The Primetime Emmy Award nominations are out! Congrats to the seven choreographers who earned nods for their exceptional TV work this year. Notably, that work was made for just two shows, "So You Think You Can Dance" and "World of Dance."
And there was a particularly remarkable snub: While the dance-filled hit "Fosse/Verdon" earned 17 nominations across many of the major categories, Andy Blankenbuehler's fabulous Fosse remixes weren't recognized in the Outstanding Choreography field.
Here are all the dance routines up for Emmys:
"Dancers can do everything these days," I announced to whoever was in earshot at the Jacob's Pillow Archives during a recent summer. I had just been dazzled by footage of a ballet dancer performing hip hop, remarkably well. But my very next thought was, What if that isn't always a good thing? What if what one can't do is the very thing that lends character?
Capezio, Bloch, So Dança, Gaynor Minden.
At the top of the line, dancers have plenty of quality footwear options to choose from, and in most metropolitan areas, stores to go try them on. But for many of North America's most economically disadvantaged dance students, there has often been just one option for purchasing footwear in person: Payless ShoeSource.
When Sonya Tayeh saw Moulin Rouge! for the first time, on opening night at a movie theater in Detroit, she remembers not only being inspired by the story, but noticing the way it was filmed.
"What struck me the most was the pace, and the erratic feeling it had," she says. The camera's quick shifts and angles reminded her of bodies in motion. "I was like, 'What is this movie? This is so insane and marvelous and excessive,' " she says. "And excessive is I think how I approach dance. I enjoy the challenge of swiftness, and the pushing of the body. I love piling on a lot of vocabulary and seeing what comes out."