November 1, 2010

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You may love only ballet, or only modern dance, or only tap, but when it comes to the Dance Magazine Awards, everyone loves Dance. The high-caliber performances and the moving sentiments of the presenting and acceptance speeches remind us how much we have in common. We’re all in this together. We understand each other’s passion, grit, and humor.


Last night we traveled from Deborah Jowitt’s eloquence (“I finally understood that it is given to very few to be utterly original) to Pilobolus’ outrageous magical body swirls in
, then dive bombing straight into Irina Dvorovenko’s heavenly Dying Swan, into Susan Jaffe’s joyous tribute to Irina Kolpakova, into Kolpakova herself, petit and larger than life, into finally wallowed in the divine smoothness and emotion of Matthew Rushing in Ailey’s “A Song for You.”


Along the way, Deborah told us about Jerome Robbins’ hilarious account of the 1954 Dance Magazine Awards, when Martha Graham and Agnes de Mille seemed to be in a holier-than-thou contest.


Douglas Dunn wore the shoes of Edwin Denby (really!) when giving the glass trophies to Deborah. After all, in terms of the poetry of her writing, she is the heir to Denby.


During the litany of thank-yous from the Pilobolus group, Robby Barnett gave thanks to stimulants—caffeine, marijuana, and alcohol.


And Irina Kolpakova talked about the time she was dancing Giselle, when Misha Baryshnikov, with his blue eyes, looked at her to say, I will love you for all time. “I believed him. I really believed him!”


Judith Jamison waxed eloquent about Matthew Rushing’s huge talent, and his
And Matthew himself said that his gift came from a force greater than himself.


And we were on the receiving end of all these people’s gifts. What a party! Seeing it all from backstage was just so magnificent.


Stay tuned for a video capsule of this wonderful event.