What Wendy's Watching

Boris Charmatz Brings His Mad, Myriad Motions to NYC

10000 Gestures, PC Tristram Kenton

Boris Charmatz, a favorite choreographer in France for his dancing in museums, has come up with an idea for non-stop dance. In his new piece, 10000 Gestures, each action is different—no repeats. This week, a horde of more than 20 dancers invades New York City's NYU Skirball Center, each of them cramming a thousand gestures into one hour. They seem to be exorcising them—shaking, scratching, jabbing, huddling—as though they can't get rid of them fast enough.


If you look at it historically, it's kind of like Yvonne Rainer's Trio A on speed, amplified by 20 people. (One of the things Trio A is known for is never repeating a phrase.) Mozart's Requiem in D minor gives this manic display of outbursts a certain grandiosity. Charmatz calls the piece "an ode to the impermanence of the art of dance." Catch it while you can, on September 27 and 28. This North American premiere is part of the Crossing the Line Festival, a series sponsored by the French Institute Alliance Française.

The Conversation
News
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Is dance a sport? Should it be in the Olympics? They're complicated questions that tend to spark heated debate. But many dance fans will be excited to hear that breaking (please don't call it breakdancing) has been provisionally added to the program for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games in Paris.

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Career Advice
Pacific Northwest Ballet principals Rachel Foster and Jonathan Porretta took their final curtain call on June 9, 2019. Photo by Lindsay Thomas, Courtesy PNB

We all know dance careers are temporary. But this season, it feels like we're saying goodbye to more stars than usual.

Many have turned to social media to share their last curtain calls, thoughts on what it feels like to say farewell to performing, and insights into the ways that dancing has made them who they are. After years of dedicating your life to the studio and stage, the decision to stop dancing is always an emotional one. Each dancer handles it in their own way—whether that means cheekily admitting to having an existential crisis, or simply leaving with no regrets about what you did for love.

We will miss these dancers' performances, but can't wait to see what awaits each in their next chapters.

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