Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew has long been plagued by its thorny gender politics. For decades, critics have debated the play’s depiction of female submission—is Petruchio’s ‘taming’ of Katharina straightforward sexism or satirical social commentary? In either case, the implicit likening of opinionated women to wild horses—strong-willed creatures that need to be broken—remains central to the plot, in which a roguish man is challenged to conquer a brassy woman so her charming (read: more compliant) younger sister can get married.
Olga Smirnova and Ekaterina Krysanova in the Bolshoi Ballet's “Taming of the Shrew.” Photograph by Dave Morgan
The son of a painter and a set designer, director/choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot was, it seems, destined to have a life in the theater. Born and raised in Tours, in central France, in 1960, he studied dance and piano at the Conservatoire Nacional de Région de Tours before joining the Rosella Hightower International School of Dance in Cannes.Continue Reading
One would think that a dance inspired by the events of the January 6 insurrection—yes, a dance!—would not be the ideal stuff of theater, but the eight members of Laurie Sefton Creates (formerly Clairobscur Dance Company), succeeded in giving life to Sefton’s premiere “Herd. Person?”, while the dance, itself, was occasionally problematic.Continue Reading