Every year, revellers flock to New York City’s Times Square to usher in the New Year. In 1999, the celebration was more grand than usual: Times Square 2000 featured twenty-four hours of live programming to usher in the Millennium. More than one million people attended; more than one billion tuned into the live broadcast. One of the masterminds behind this spectacular was David Parsons, who choreographed and directed its dance elements. Parsons seems an ideal choice for the event: since he founded Parsons Dance in 1985 with Tony Award-winning lighting designer Howell Binkley, he has been developing pieces that pulse with energy and excitement. In its latest season at the Joyce Theater, Parsons Dance yet again aims to dazzle. Its opening night program does have its thrills, and each piece moves with a stunning degree of confidence. But the evening’s theatrics—strobe lights, masks, live accompaniment—ultimately threaten to overpower the technical prowess of Parsons and his dancers.
Abby Silva Gavezzoli performing “Reflections” by Abby Silva Gavezzoli and David Parsons. Photograph by Yi-Chun Wu