Dance Reviews

The task at hand is a review of “Romeo and Juliet,” but more on that in a minute. What needs to be said first is this: In our moment of political and pandemic chaos, Peter Boal is doing an extraordinary job of connecting his company to its public with a... Read More
The American Ballet Theatre Studio Company aired performances of new works and excerpted classics over two nights this week, for free on YouTube. Actually, the shows were billed as two halves of one Winter Festival performance, separated by a 23-hour intermission. I appreciated the digestibility of this scenario, for watching... Read More
Come for the choreographers, stay for the dancers. A collaboration between Sadler’s Wells and BBC Arts, Dancing Nation presents a selection of new and restaged works from emerging and established artists across the UK over 3 hour-long episodes. Most of the pre-recorded performances were filmed on grand stages across the... Read More
Dance Camera West (DCW), the festival dedicated to the intersection of cinematography and choreography, was co-founded in Los Angeles in 2001 by Lynette Kessler and Kelly Hargraves, proving that the art form has come a long way since Thomas Edison hand-tinted the swirling skirts of modern dance pioneer Loie Fuller... Read More
Someday we will recognize the dance pieces created during the pandemic, conceived for the camera, performed by a few dancers, innervated by a sense of instability. It is the case with the new “I wonder where the dreams I don’t remember go,” staged by Yoann Bourgeois for NDT1, filmed without... Read More
As Tokyo and its surrounding areas prepare to go into a second lockdown, it’s unclear what the immediate future of ballet and live events will be in the Japanese capital. Only last month, ballet, dance, opera and other performing arts had made a welcome return and the outlook was bright... Read More
Blessed be the diplomats and the grant writers! Seven years ago, Silicon Valley-based dancer and choreographer Philein Wang applied to the U.S. State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Beijing and secured a $50,000 grant for a series of U.S.-China exchanges and tours. This year, confronted with anti-Asian racism in... Read More
The sputtering stop-start of lockdown measures in the U.K. has wiped most of the 2020 dance season from the calendar, including a few live holiday performances that were optimistically (and, in hindsight, unrealistically) scheduled this autumn, like a bill of world premieres from English National Ballet. But it’s the year... Read More
Solos and site-specific works were the dance world’s prevailing themes in 2020, for obvious reasons: people couldn’t touch each other or congregate. But the term site-specific can mean two different things. Sometimes it refers to a live event attended by a real, albeit limited, audience. For example, the LA Dance... Read More
It’s not just little girls who dream of escaping into ballet. Created for the screen by Christopher Hampson and set and costume designer Lez Brotherston and filmed by directors Jess and Morgs, The Secret Theatre comes across as a Victorian toybox full of rich, endless surprises. When a young boy, played... Read More
Shakespeare wasn’t a man unfamiliar with pandemics. He lived through the plague and his hometown of Stratford-upon-Avon was decimated by it, leaving thousands dead. It’s timely, then, that Megumi Nakamura and Yasuyuki Shuto’s beautifully produced and choreographed “Shakespeare The Sonnets” hit the New National Theatre Tokyo stage for two performances... Read More
The American Ballet Theatre broadcast a program of world premieres free over YouTube last week. I liked everything about it except for its ridiculous title: “ABT TODAY: The Future Starts Now.” Um, the future starts soon. More like tomorrow. But I got their gist. ABT, more than most ballet companies,... Read More
It is difficult not to be effusive about Sydney Dance Company’s first live performance since Covid emerged. For the first time in nine months the audience is being ushered into Sydney’s Carriageworks. It’s like so many performances, the lights are dimmed, there is chatter, but there are differences. Some people... Read More
Let’s be blunt: This is a year of desperation “Nutcrackers.” To deliver even one-fifth the joy of a live “Nutcracker” during these darkest pandemic days (and, I fear, to attract an even smaller share of the usual audience)—this must be counted a triumph. So, for one meaningful measure of whether... Read More
Sarasota Ballet
Covid-19 has been devastating to the performing arts. However, over the weekend I watched a performance by the Sarasota Ballet that reminded me of a pandemic silver lining: expanded accessibility. From my apartment in Brooklyn I’ve been able to see performances streamed from all over the world. These digital shows... Read More

The Sunday Review

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