Merce’s marvelous movie

Dance · Film
Seen yesterday in Cunningham, the new Merce Cunningham documentary shot in 3-D by writer/director Alla Kovgan: imagery and brief excepts from “Summerspace,” the choreographer’s legendary ‘no-center’ ballet dating from 1958 and performed in Robert Rauschenberg’s pointillist costumes/decor to music by Morton Feldman. The film, which may bring the rarefied artist his most widespread exposure with ...

REVIEW: BODYTRAFFIC’s Wallis residency opens strongly

Dance · Reviews
by 
BODYTRAFFIC performs (d)elusive minds by Fernando Hernando Magadan (l-r) Guzmán Rosado, Tina Finkelman Berkett. Photo by Don Lee. Some dance performances give us gorgeous bodies, abstract movement and music we can hum: an escape from politics, madness and murder. Others use dancers for polemics and not much else; these may be worthy, but hard to watch. On Friday, ...

As the clock ticks, time well spent on ‘The Day’

Dance · Music
Who can resist the alluring image, above, from a new theatrical production, THE DAY, presented at CAP UCLA and featuring two strong women of the performing arts, former New York City Ballet dancer Wendy Whelan (she is now associate director of the company) and cellist Maya Beiser, described as “a force of nature” by The ...

Complexions brings dances for ‘now’ to Long Beach

Dance · Language & ideas
Complexions Contemporary Ballet performing WOKE.  photo: Nina Wurtzel Complexions Contemporary Ballet continues to prod, provoke, and entertain. When choreographer Dwight Rhoden and dance-superstar Desmond Richardson co-founded their rainbow coalition of a ballet troupe in 1994, it took hold. Spurred by their mentor Alvin Ailey, the two men staked their claim on the power of dance ...

Olé, Olga Pericet!

Dance
Ed. note: This story by artsmeme’s Debra Levine was written for The Ford Theatres and originally published as “A Flamenco Dynamite.”  Flamenco is bursting with vitality—a new generation has contemporized the centuries-old form. So it’s fitting that the “new world” setting of the Ford Amphitheatre should welcome to its midst a foremost practitioner of “nuevo ...

Looks interesting: John Kelly’s latest

Dance · Theater
Photo credit: Josef Astor Adapting a text from his subject’s diaries, novels, and letters, performance artist John Kelly has fashioned a dance-theater piece based on the fantastical life of Samuel Steward (1909-1993), a gay novelist, tattoo artist, author of erotic fiction, and, according to Kelly, unabashed sexual adventurer. Underneath the Skin, commissioned by the NYU ...

Gwen & Bob make personal appearance — as Michelle & Sam

Dance · Film
It was delightful to see, appearing in person, Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell at a special screening event held on the erstwhile Twentieth Century-Fox lot (soon Disney). The duo, emitting body language that indicated real closeness, participated in a q&a session that celebrated FOSSE/VERDON’s many nominations for Emmy Awards — a whopping seventeen. The August ...

Dig it! Betty Grable in ‘Diga Diga Do’

Dance · Film
A fabulous YouTube find, a compendium of song-and-dance numbers performed by Betty Grable, in 1954, during a live television broadcast: the premier edition of Chrysler “Shower of Stars” on CBS. The credited choreographer for the show was Robert (Bob) Sidney and the associate director was Miriam Nelson. Both were important Hollywood choreographers. Other Grable numbers ...

Boys dance 3

Dance · Language & ideas
For weeks I have planned to include this beautiful video by the master instructor of young men (and young women), Fabrice Herrault. It seems like a timely moment to share it now. Please enjoy the purity, intelligence and discipline on display as a result of Fabrice’s gentle but exigent pedagogy. His work serves no political ...

Make ’em laff! with eccentric dance

Dance
ed. note: the opening words, here, from “The Motion Picture Academy Celebrates Eccentric Dance” published by Dance Magazine August 15, 2019. The author is artsmeme‘s Debra Levine. There’s a type of dance you’ve never heard of: It’s called “classical ballet.” The progenitors included Mathilde Kschessinska, Vaslav Nijinsky and Anna Pavlova. The art form passed through ...