New York Notebook

February 10, 2011







Graham & Other Geniuses

Martha Graham and Isamu Noguchi: Together they forged a bold new style of stage space. His spare sets helped frame her twisted torments and extend them from the personal to the universal. Now, for the 85th anniversary of the Martha Graham Dance Company, that partnership is celebrated in the Noguchi/Graham Connection. Also in the season are a revival of avant-garde theater director Robert Wilson’s piece for the company from 1995, a new work by Taiwanese choreographer Bulareyaung Pagarlava, and Panorama (1935). The Rose Theater, March 15–20. See —Wendy Perron



How We Doin’, Mankind?

“Do you think the world is going to end?” Performance artist Jill Sigman asked that question—and other equally existential ones—of visitors to Hut #4, a post-apocalyptic dwelling/installation at her Brooklyn studio last September. This month she brings her dark yet comic sensibility uptown to continue asking, as she puts it, “how we are doing as a species.” Her trio of dances at the 92nd Street Y Harkness Dance Festival includes Fowl Play, her duet with guest artist Andre Koslowski; Split Stitch, featuring dancers from Cleveland’s GroundWorks DanceTheater; and a new piece. Sigman’s work isn’t always easy to watch, but it’s often as hopeful as it is abrasive. March 11–13. See —Siobhan Burke



Broken Novel

Few choreographers explore the human condition as sensitively as Doug Varone, whose lush movement vocabulary ranges from boldly grand to minutely filigreed. His company of seven takes the Joyce stage March 15–20 in the New York premiere of Chapters from a Broken Novel, to a score by David Van Tieghem. The evening comprises more than 20 vignettes, taking inspiration and quotations from literature, film, and life. Varone’s dancers are intelligent, athletic, and work together as closely as some families, amplifying the emotional complexity. See —Susan Yung



Blakeley White-McGuire in rehearsal for premiere by Bulareyaung Pagarlava, photo Bulareyaung Pagarlava, Courtesy Graham