Seeking Nijinsky’s unrealized ‘Sarabande’ ballet at Turocy workshop

Dance
Nijinsky left behind the seeds of an unfinished ballet he began in 1913. That was the rather infamous year in which the dancer/choreographer unveiled his provocative The Rite of Spring to the shock and awe of le tout Paris. He also premiered Jeux, an overtly sensual ballet for three—a love triangle—that subtly foreshadowed the oncoming ...

Nijinsky influenced by Parisian dance hall? Soon explored at unusual Seattle workshop

Dance
How does “Exploring an Unrealized Ballet and its Cultural Context: Paris 1909 to 1915” strike you as an interesting way to pass four days in Seattle? That is exactly what I shall be doing June 29 – July 2 at the University of Washington in Seattle, courtesy of Catherine Turocy, Artistic Director of the New ...

Must the show really go on? 2

Dance · Film · Language & ideas
In a world in which ‘norms’ seem at best untethered and at worst unhinged, everything is under revision, everything feels up for grabs! And thus we question that most sacredly-held tenet … that the show must go on. In this purposefully ‘bad’ dance number from Cover Girl (1944) courtesy of B-movie factory Columbia Pictures, the ...

Duckler dancers to scale tall ships of Port of Los Angeles

Architecture & Design · Dance
Full immersion is the typical call to action of a Heidi Duckler Dance Theatre site-specific happening. That’s what attracts her adventure-seeking audience. But next Saturday night, when we attend Beyond the Waterfront, Duckler’s latest site-specific work, we hope it does not require a plunge into the deep dark sea at the Port of Los Angeles ...

Despondence emerges in choreographic language

Dance · Language & ideas
The culture is in upheaval; most everyone admits and discusses it. Artists, of course, feel it acutely — as do we all. It’s a conversation that best takes place in communities. One place is with an audience, at a theater. But how to translate these profound feelings, which seem so contingent on verbiage, into a ...

Populist Eifman Ballet en route to Southern California

Dance
by 
Choreographer Boris Eifman is the Donald Trump of the ballet world. His fans love him for his provocative, populist appeal while his critics find him unsophisticated and far from coherent. And then there’s the Russia thing. Eifman is Russian and his narrative ballets, while modernist in story line, have the old-school Bolshoi tendency to go ...

Gray Davis’s grandest battement

Dance
“I never realized how high it was,” he said. “Luckily, I’m a ballet dancer, so I swung my leg up.” That’s what American Ballet Theatre dancer Gray Davis, 31, told the New York Times in describing how he got himself out of the grisly pit of the subway track at Broadway and 72nd Street station. ...

Who was Olga Spessivtseva?

Dance
Olga Spessivtseva (1895 – 1991) was the quintessence of a Mariinsky (Kirov) Ballet romantic ballerina whom George Balanchine famously called “a beautiful diamond, cool, distant, and perfect.” The legendary Russian ballerina, who died in the United States, is the subject of choreographer Boris Eifman’s full-evening work, Red Giselle, coming soon to Segerstrom Center for the Arts. ...

Let choreographer Laura Karlin decorate your home

Dance
I very much enjoyed Invertigo Dance Theatre founder/choreographer Laura Karlin‘s “Interior Design,” a high point of the vigorous opening night of the Los Angeles Dance Festival last weekend. Hosted by director Deborah Brockus at the cozy Theatre Raymond Kabbaz, this year’s festival offered a parade of Los Angeles dance companies the opportunity to display their ...

Review: Kyle Abraham’s superlative A.I.M. @ The Broad Stage

Dance · Reviews
Only a handful of contemporary choreographers could pull off an evening of the magnitude and excellence that Kyle Abraham did last night, together with his 8-member dance company, Abraham.in.Motion, at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica. For this type of presentation, that featuring the voice of a single choreographer, Kyle is now kyng. He’s keeping ...