The 1971 ballet “Goldberg Variations,” by Jerome Robbins, has a reputation for being long, and, for that reason, one of the choreographer’s “difficult” ballets. Robbins used all thirty of the keyboard variations Bach developed on a simple, mournful theme. With the exception of three in G minor they are in a single key, G major. Almost perversely, Robbins kept all the repeats. The music is played at a more leisurely pace than in most keyboard recitals. And in the first half of the ballet, there are few large ensembles or showy steps. “Goldberg” is a ballet that asks us to look, listen, and then look some more; to slow our breathing, sit back, and stay a while.
From left: Daniel Applebaum, Emilie Gerrity, Ashley Laracey and Arrón Sanz in “Goldberg Variations” by Jerome Robbins. Photograph by Erin Baiano
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