Wandering Ballet Forests of Love and Death

Titania (Sarah Lamb) and Oberon (Steven McRae) reconciled. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

England's Royal Ballet performs in New York June 23-28. Felix Mendelssohn wasn’t yet eighteen when he wrote his Overture to Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He’d only just read the play that year (1826) in German translation; it must have excited him mightily. He was over thirty when he combined the overture with incidental music to accompany a performance of Shakespeare’s … [Read more...]

Chamber Ballet in a Church

Elena Zahlmann and Jeffrey Kazin in David Parker's Two Timing. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

New York Theatre Ballet presents classics and new works at St. Mark's. A year ago, New York Theatre Ballet was forced out of its longtime home in the Murray Hill neighborhood, and founder-director Diana Byer was distraught (do I need to discuss the insane prices in Manhattan real estate?). The outcome was a happy one; the company has relocated its studio to the second floor space in St. … [Read more...]

Keeping a Heritage Alive

Another ABT cast for Jardin aux Lilas: Cory Stearns as The Lover and Hee Seo as Caroline. Photo: Marty Sohl

American Ballet Theatre opens its Lincoln Center season with one-act masterworks from its repertory. When watching the classics of 19th-century and early 20th-century ballet, it’s wise not to ask too many questions. When enjoying Michel Fokine’s 1909 Les Sylphides, for instance, you’re not supposed to wonder what this lone man is doing amid all these women in long, gauzy, white tutus, two … [Read more...]

From Denmark to New York

Erica Pereira and Allen Peiffer in Bournonville Divertissements. Photo: Paul Kolnik
Spring Gala
Choreography by: August Bournonville 
Originally staged by Stanley Williams 
Staged by Nilas Martins
New York City Ballet  
Credit Photo: Paul Kolnik
studio@paulkolnik.com
nyc 212-362-7778

The New York City Ballet presents an evening of ballets by August Bournonville. In 1930, the year following the death of Serge Diaghilev and the dissolution of his company, Les Ballets Russes, its dancers and choreographers roamed Europe in search of jobs. After a stint in London, George Balanchine found work in Copenhagen as a guest choreographer for the Royal Danish Ballet, where he set … [Read more...]

Tripartite Triumph

The ‘Rōdē,ō quintet. (L to R): Daniel Applebaum (hidden), Allen Peiffer, Taylor Stanley, Craig Hall, and Andrew Scordato. Photo: Paul Kolnik

Three choreographers shower their talents on New York City Ballet The only perplexing thing about Justin Peck’s new work for the New York City Ballet is its diacritically enriched title: ‘Rōdē,ō: Four Dance Episodes. In every other way, his ballet for a company in which he is both a soloist and its resident choreographer is clear, brilliant, and brave. Brave because he has set his work to … [Read more...]

From Denmark With Love

Ida Praetorius and Andreas Kaas in the pas deux from The Flower Festival in Genzano. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

Royal Danish Ballet: Principals and Soloists appears at the Joyce Theater, January 13 through 17. Guess what! August Bournonville has a website (bournonville.com). Since he died in 1879 and didn’t expect the many works he choreographed for the Royal Danish Ballet to long survive, he would undoubtedly be gratified to learn that eight of his ballets and a handful of divertissements weathered … [Read more...]

To American Ballet Theatre: Happy 75th

Marcelo Gomes and Hee Seo in Liam Scarlett's With a Chance of Rain. Photo: Marty Sohl

American Ballet Theatre's fall season begins its 75th anniversary celebration. It’s traditional at anniversary celebrations to raise a glass to the past and speculate optimistically about the future. For American Ballet Theatre, with 80 dancers to be paid (along with the necessary artistic and business-oriented staff members) an excuse for a fund-raising gala is a godsend. Its 2014 and 2015 … [Read more...]

A Ballerina Moves On

Whelan and Tyler Angle in By Two, With and From, by Christopher Wheeldon and Alexei Ratmansky. Photo: Paul Kolnik

Wendy Whelan retires from the New York City Ballet after thirty fertile years. In 2008, Nikolaj Hübbe was leaving his position as a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet to become the artistic director of the Royal Danish Ballet, where he had gotten his start. At a cocktail reception in his honor thrown at the Danish Consulate, someone asked him which ballerina he would miss … [Read more...]

Cool Breeze from the West

Alejandro Cerrudo's Memory Glow. PNB dancers: Elizabeth Murphy (L), Leah Merchant, and Raphaël Bouchard. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

Pacific Northewest Ballet performs works by Wheeldon, Cerrudo, and Peck in New York. There are forty-three dancers in Seattle’s Pacific Northwest Ballet. Unless I’ve miscounted, only nineteen appeared in the company’s season at the Joyce Theater, and the most people to appear in any of the three ballets shown was a dozen. Artistic director Peter Boal’s choice of works to bring to New York … [Read more...]

Two by Two by Two

Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild in Liam Scarlett's Funérailles. Photo: Paul Kolnik

Three New Ballets premiere at the New York City Ballet's Gala on September 23, 2014 Fashions change more rapidly than dance styles do, so for the New York City Ballet to structure its Fall gala around the theme of “what’s new?” makes a certain marketing sense. The aura of novelty cloaks all. And the green leaves bedecking the balcony overlooking the Lincoln Center Plaza suggested springtime … [Read more...]