New York Notebook

May 8, 2011





Down on the (Collective) Farm

The Bright Stream
, Alexei Ratmansky’s robustly comic ballet, set to a neglected 1935 Shostakovich score, won over New Yorkers when the Bolshoi brought it here in 2005. Now American Ballet Theatre, where Ratmansky has been enriching the repertoire since becoming artist in residence, will perform this two-act charmer during its Metropolitan Opera House season. With four central roles requiring technical brilliance and dramatic nuance, Bright Stream offers a wealth of opportunities. ABT will field four casts of principals including stars like Natalia Osipova, Paloma Herrera, Gillian Murphy, and Herman Cornejo. And watch for veterans such as Martine van Hamel and Susan Jones in some of the ballet’s juicy character roles. June 9–15, —Susan Reiter


Innocence Lost

For most of four decades, Jennifer Muller has created dances that satisfy intellectually and viscerally, with lyrical, expressionistic movement interpreted with passion by her company of 10. At Cedar Lake Theater from June 22–26, her company, The Works, will premiere The White Room, whose title is a metaphor for an innocent girl who encounters an array of characters, many unsavory. As she and her environment are altered by these people, questions about societal values arise. The score is a compilation of cello music performed by various artists, including Yo-Yo Ma. See —Susan Yung


Fierce Finance

Formal rigor and difficult, undecorated movement mark choreographer Carrie Hanson’s recent works for the Seldoms, her Chicago-based dance company. Two of those, Thrift and Death of a (Prada) Salesman, brought spoken dialogue and trenchant humor back to Hanson’s stage vocabulary. Tightened and incorporated into Stupormarket, an evening-length work on the global economic meltdown, they show new vitality. Its broad range of subjects—from Bush and Keynes to vogueing and Fosse—is appropriately greedy. But a terrific cast and quilted score by Richard Woodbury keep Stupormarket in the black. June 10–11. See —Zachary Whittenburg



Gen Hashimoto in Jennifer Muller’s
Island. Photo by Carol Rosegg, Courtesy JMTW