In memoriam: ‘Still trying to get Paul Taylor’s jump right’

Dance · Featured
Ed. note: A guest writer, Sean Mahoney, pictured above, submitted this personal reminiscence of his work with the great iconoclastic choreographer Paul Taylor (1930 – 2018). Mahoney, who began his association with the Taylor organization in 1994, has been a member of Paul Taylor Dance Company since 2004. I was in rehearsal and Paul was ...

How ‘Lola’ helped Bob Fosse handle Gwen’s ‘bad reputation’

Dance
In a 1991 interview with Gwen Verdon on CUNY Television, the great Gwen describes her first encounter with Fosse as her choreographer for Damn Yankees. I had seen [Fosse] at MGM studios. We had met at a party that Michael Kidd gave. I had a reputation for being difficult … and I was. I was ...

Death of a dancer: Peter Frame

Dance
Former New York City Ballet principal dancer Peter Frame, a beloved teacher and coach, performs the duet from Balanchine’s AGON with Victor Castelli. Frame, at right, died August 30, 2018 — sadly, the day after the passing away of Paul Taylor.   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Kurt Froman (@kurtfroman) ...

Chase Finlay, who danced Balanchine’s ‘Apollo,’ calls women ‘sluts’ 1

Dance · Featured
As the young god Apollo, the title role of the ballet masterpiece created by the choreographer George Balanchine at the precocious age of 28, former New York City Ballet dancer Chase Finlay had “great dignity,” “tapering limbs,” “a beautifully long and firm neck,” and a “powerful thorax.” Those words were written by New York Times ...

Backstage brawl for Michael Kidd & Dolores Gray’s mother

Dance · Theater
We’re always looking for good show-biz stories involving the estimable Dolores Gray. Jack Cole, who worked with Gray on several projects — Kismet, Designing Woman among them — had a few select words about Gray … and her mother. In this case, the story concerns Gray’s hiring for Destry Rides Again, the Broadway musical adaptation ...

Bob Fosse ‘wunderbar’ in MY SISTER EILEEN at retrospective 3

Dance · Film
It came as a mild surprise even to arts·meme‘s Debra Levine, despite delivering a talk, “Bob Fosse, Dancer,” prior to the two movie musicals (both named for ladies!) screened on August 25, 2018 at UCLA Film & Television Archive’s “Fosse, Fosse, Fosse!” retrospective. Bob Fosse was a good movie star! First up was KISS ME ...

Dance-trance at Lincoln Center 2

Dance · Language & ideas
Everyone has the right to respond to our crazy age as best they can. And who am I to say that the eighth annual staging of “9/11 Table of Silence Project,” a “prayer for peace and healing” choreographed by Jacqulyn Buglisi for 100+ dancers, is not a valid expression of grief and anguish in still-traumatic ...

Mere mortals to evoke Verdon & Fosse, giants of American dance

Dance · Featured · Film
Nicole Fosse (middle), artistic director of The Verdon Fosse Legacy and co-producer of a newly announced FX Networks mini-series now in development about her parents’ professional and romantic bond, poses with the talented actors, Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell, slated to play the leading roles of Gwen Verdon and Bob Fosse. On the one hand, ...

Flourishing Los Angeles experimental dance scene of the ’80s recalled

Dance
ed. note: We hear much about the current vigor of Los Angeles dance. A guest writer, the visual artist Steve DeGroodt adds his historic perspective in this essay contributed to the blog. There is a vibrancy and presence that has been missing in the world of dance in Los Angeles for some time. What once ...

The valleys are alive with the sound of gibberish, courtesy of artist Paul McCarthy

Dance · Film · Language & ideas · Music · Theater
Maria, pictured above and played by Julie Andrews in the syrupy Hollywood movie-musical, The Sound of Music (1965), delivers her iconic hilltop anthem, but in a bizarro version created by visual artist Paul McCarthy, her scale runs do ti la so fa mi re do. McCarthy created cisuM fo dnuoS ehT / The Sound of ...