Fall is here, and the New York City Ballet embarked upon a new season on Tuesday night. Business as usual—except for the fact that I watched it on Wednesday morning. The dance scene in New York will remain virtual for the foreseeable future, alas. But there was great comfort in the fact that City Ballet could still offer an All-Balanchine program to commence its calendar year. The company’s fall season generally begins with a strong return to roots after the lengthy summer hiatus. I so look forward to seeing pristine executions of the Black & Whites, or a slate-clearing “Serenade,” as autumn’s crisp air blows in. So, even though the real dancers are still on an interminable break, it was a balm to have a mixed bill from the company’s founder nonetheless. The sounds of the orchestra tuning over the opening credits gave me chills—I’ve missed that noise so much. And for some reason it is a far more welcome simulacrum than the canned crowd roars being dubbed over sports games, which I find hokey.
Teresa Reichlen in “Episodes” by George Balanchine. Photograph by Erin Baiano