Family Ties

(L to R): Tamara Riewe, Nicholas Strafaccia, and Elena Demyanenko in Trisha Brown'e Opal Loop/Clous Installation #72503. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

The Trisha Brown Dance Company and the Stephen Petronio Company give their New York seasons the same week. Sitting in the Joyce Theater during the Stephen Petronio Company’s 30th Anniversary Season, the word “highflyer” suddenly pushes it way into my mind. This is not just because Petronio is ambitious and successful, but because he takes risks and succeeds when you might expect him to … [Read more...]

Up and Coming Meet the Masters

Daphne Fernberger (L) and Lorrin Brubaker in Lar Lubovitch's Concerto Six Twenty-Two. Photo: Rosalie O'Connor

Juilliard Dance presents works by Tharp, Lubovitch, and Feld. Suzanne Beahrs Dance performs at Danspace. I count Twyla Tharp’s Baker’s Dozen among the world’s great dances. When I saw it in 1979, performed by her marvelous company, I thought I’d die of pleasure. How could I not hustle uptown to see Juilliard Dance’s annual challenge to its super-talented students, when Baker’s Dozen was … [Read more...]

Help, I’m Breaking Up!

Alvaro Dule and Anna Nowak in Wayne McGregor's Atomos. Photo: Ravi Deepres

Wayne McGregor/Random Dance brings Atomos to Peak Performances at Montclair State's Alexander Kasser Theater. Wayne McGregor wants it both ways, and I don’t blame him. This virtuoso dancemaker— resident choreographer at Britain’s Royal Ballet, the director of Wayne McGregor/Random Dance, and a been-around whose works grace the repertories of numerous companies—wants us to look at his dances … [Read more...]

The Many Faces of Spring

Martha Graham's Appalachian Spring. Foreground: Abdiel Jacobsen and Blackely White-McGuire. At back (L to R): Katherine Crockett. Charlotte Landreau, Xiaochuan Xie, Tamisha Guy, Ying Xin. Photo: Costas

The Martha Graham Dance Company celebrates Appalachian Spring's 70th with a new work by Nacho Duato. Martha Graham’s Appalachian Spring was first performed in October of 1944 in the Coolidge Auditorium at the Library of Congress on a not very large stage intended for chamber music concerts. Its back and side walls with working doors would have made it awkward for the eight dancers to make … [Read more...]

New Trails for Traditions

The cast of Pam Tanowitz's Heaven on On Her Head. Photo: Yi-Chun Wu

Pam Tanowitz makes her Joyce debut February 4-5 with two premieres. If Pam Tanowitz had been baptized into dance as an infant, Merce Cunningham and George Balanchine would surely have been standing on either side of the font, ready to serve as godfathers. Tanowitz’s choreographic works, like those shown on her recent program at the Joyce Theater, tell no stories. Nor do they seethe with … [Read more...]

Pina Bausch Returns to Juilliard

Fourth-year Juilliard students Kristina Bentz and Bynh Ho in Pina Bausch's Wind von West. Photo: Rosalie O'Connor

Juilliard students appear in premieres by Takehiro Ueyama, Brian Brooks, and Darrell Grand Moultrie, plus a reconstruction of a work by Pina Bausch. Every winter, the Juilliard School presents its dance students in four new works. All its dance students.  Although—since some pieces are double cast—you might have to attend two performances to see every single talented dancer on stage. This … [Read more...]

Just What Are We Celebrating?

Linda Celeste Sims devours  Jamar Roberts in Lift. Photo: Paul Kolnik

The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater premieres Aszure Barton's Lift at City Center. Any choreographer invited to make a piece for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater must come to the first rehearsal with both elation and trepidation. The Ailey dancers are like racehorses—sleek, swift, eager, ablaze with temperament.  What can you feed them?  How do you groom them?  Are you up to the … [Read more...]

How Many Lines to Cross?

Gina Gibney's Dividing Line. (L to R, front to back): Zachary Leigh Denison, Amy Miller, Javier Baca, Natsuki Arai, Jennifer McQuiston Lott, Jake Bone. Photo: Julieta Cervantes

Gina Gibney Dance premieres Dividing Line at Florence Gould Hall. November 14-16. Gina Gibney is a force on the New York dance scene. The force behind Gibney Dance Community Action, a program that stages workshops (over 500 annually) for survivors of domestic violence . The force behind the Gibney Dance Center at 19th Street and Broadway, where Barbara Matera’s immense theatrical costume … [Read more...]

Good News from Rochester

Vitalio Jeune in Norwood Pennewell's Gin. Photo: John Schlia

Garth Fagan Dance brings two new works to the Joyce Theater, November 12 through 17. Why is it that I always want to begin writing about Garth Fagan’s Rochester-based company by hymning the dancers? Maybe because he evidently feels the same way about them that I do. His Prelude (1981, revised 1983), which opens one of the group’s two programs at the Joyce, introduces them to us—old-timers … [Read more...]

Light into Darkness, Darkness to Light

(Foreground, L to R): Aron Bolm, David Hernandez, Chrysa Parkinson, Sandy Williams, and Marius Peterson in Cesena. Photo: Stephanie Berger

Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker's Rosas and graindelavoix perform in En Atendant and Cesena. I wish that I had been in Avignon in July of 2010. Then I could have seen Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker’s En Atendant performed in the ancient Cloister of the Celestines, and, a week later, her companion piece, Cesena, in the Court of Honor, an amphitheater attached to the Papal Palace.  Both were performed … [Read more...]