The New York City Ballet presented its first premiere of the year Thursday night: Alexei Ratmansky’s “Voices.” This piece marked a welcome departure for Ratmansky. Erenow he has essentially worked in two modes: emotionally resonant, peasant-inflected abstraction or grand-scale historical reconstruction. “Voices” is neither, though it contains elements of both (like folksy accents for Megan Fairchild, and challenges of classical ballet technique—for almost everyone). Its closest antecedent, perhaps its inverse, is his “Serenade after Plato’s Symposium”—a set of solos for seven men which was choreographed for ABT in 2016. But that piece was more conventional, with steps that hewed closely to its Bernstein score.
Sara Mearns and New York City Ballet dancers in Alexei Ratmansky’s “Voices.” 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
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