“The Rite of Spring” is celebrated as much for its infamy as it is for its groundbreaking aesthetic and influence on twentieth-century dance and music. The uproar the avant-garde ballet—scored by Igor Stravinksy and originally choreographed by Vaslav Nijinsky for Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes—provoked during its 1913 premiere in Paris has enticed many a dancemaker to tackle it in the century since, with choreographers as diverse as Kenneth MacMillan, Martha Graham, Glen Tetley and Pina Bausch trying their hand. In fact, the work has undergone more than 150 interpretations since its debut, and while some are more liberal than others, two components remain in virtually every version: Stravinsky’s strident score and a libretto centred on the Chosen One, a sacrificial victim fated to dance herself to death.
Sasha Waltz & Guests in “Sacre.” Photograph by Bernd Uhlig
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