Brittany Pollack and Amar Ramasar in Christopher Wheeldon's DGV: Danse à Grande Vitesse. Photo by Paul Kolnik.
The connections between New York City Ballet and Broadway go way back—choreography by Jerome Robbins and George Balanchine frequently found its way onto Broadway stages, from West Side Story to the Slaughter on Tenth Avenue number in On Your Toes. Today, principal Robert Fairchild is currently headlining the West End production of An American in Paris, while soloist Georgina Pazcoguin has been on a leave of absence this past year to play Victoria in the Broadway revival of CATS.
When the just-announced revival of the Rodgers & Hammerstein classic Carousel opens on Broadway in March 2018, we'll be adding three more names to the list: Justin Peck has been brought on to choreograph the production, while Amar Ramasar and Brittany Pollack have been cast in key roles.
According to The New York Times, Peck's work will be based on Agnes de Mille's choreography for the original 1945 production (her second Rodgers & Hammerstein collaboration, after Oklahoma!). However, he believes this version "will be an even more dance-and-movement focused production."
This isn't the first time that Peck has followed in de Mille's footsteps. His 2015 Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes took Aaron Copland's score for de Mille's famous dramatic ballet and reinterpreted it as a semi-abstract contemporary work.
Ramasar is set to play Jigger, a ruffian who incites the male lead, Billy Bigelow, to assist him with a dangerous robbery. Pollack will portray Louise, Bigelow's daughter. Ramasar might be playing the exact opposite of the joyful guy we're used to seeing onstage at NYCB, but Pollack will have loads of dancing to do if de Mille's original choreography is anything to go by, which featured an extended ballet sequence starring Pollack's character.
As Peck's recent The Times are Racing for NYCB proved, the young choreographer still has quite a few tricks up his sleeve in terms of stylistic range—and really, it was probably only a matter of time before the Great White Way came calling. We can't wait.
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.
A previous lab cycle. Photo by Evan Zimmerman/MurphyMade, Courtesy RRR Creative
Choreographic incubator Broadway Dance Lab has recently been rechristened Dance Lab New York. "I found the nomenclature of 'Broadway' was actually a type of glass ceiling to the organization," says choreographer Josh Prince, who founded the nonprofit in 2012.