the danceview times
writers on dancing

 Volume 3, Number 43  November 21, 2005     The weekly online supplement to DanceView magazine

New Talent?
Just Looking
“Curious Conscience” / “A Steel Garden” / “Swamp”
 Rambert Dance Company
Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London   
15 – 19 November, 2005
by John Percival
copyright ©2005 by John Percival

Rambert Dance Company will celebrate its 80th anniversary next year; a little prematurely, I think, since June 1926 actually saw not a new company but only the premiere of Frederick Ashton’s first apprentice work, made while he was still a student, given as a number in a revue and starring Marie Rambert and Ashton. (It was sold mainly on the name of Rambert’s famous playwright husband Ashley Dukes, who provided the story.) Subsequently students of the Rambert School took part in various recitals, plays, and an opera until in 1930 they had developed to the point of giving a complete matinee, followed by two two-week seasons with guest stars Karsavina and Woizikovsky. The success of these led to the foundation in 1931 of a small permanent company, called at first the Ballet Club.   
read review

The Sure Thing

"Romeo and Juliet"
Royal Danish Ballet
Det Kongelige Teater
Copenhagen, Denmark
November 2005

by Eva Kistrup
copyright ©2005 by Eva Kistrup

It is now 30 years ago that John Neumeier's "Romeo and Juliet" was danced by Royal Danish Ballet for the first time by a glorious cast led by young budding stars Mette-Ida Kirk and Ib Andersen, supported by Niels Kehlet (Mercurtio), Mette Hønningen, (Lady Capulet), Henning Kronstam (Lord Capulet) and Tommy Frishøj (Tybalt). Jürgen Rose had created a marvellous scenography (even better than his "Onegin") that brought the early renaissance to life. The performances were dedicated to Vera Volkova, the brilliant teacher who had formed most of cast and was a strong influence on John Neumeier, who had attended her classes in 1964 as a late starter. That premiere was significant, and not only because it marked the beginning of an ongoing relationship between Neumeier and Royal Danish Ballet—he has produced or choreographed a half-dozen major works for the company since. It also spelled the end of the Flindt era, and showed how strong the company truly was, not least in dramatic ballet. A big hit on home ground, the ballet has not been embraced as well abroad. Nevertheless, it remains a true favourite with audience and dancers alike and dancing a major part in "Romeo and Juliet" is a key ambition for most dancers. It's fair to say that over the 30-year period, only a handful of dancers have been cast as Romeo or Juliet (the original cast, Mette-Ida Kirk with Ib Andersen or Arne Villumsen, danced the roles for over 15 years) and some of the most significant of the company's dancers have not been given the chance. This new production shows two full casts at the two first performances, and there is rumour of more casts for later performances. 
read review


An Evening of Dance/Theater
Nancy Havlik's Dance Performance Group
The Josephine Butler Parks Center
Washington, DC, USA
Saturday, November 19, 2005

by George Jackson
copyright ©2005 by George Jackson

Nancy Havlik's reading ranges from the light, whimsical and rather recent to the ancient classics. Refreshingly, she's not a choreographer who exploits writers. Rather, she seeks to be of service to the texts she selects. Making sure the words are clear and comprehensible, Havlik underlines and illustrates them with movement and dancing. Her work adds theatrical dimensions and a quotient of comment to books that many people admire and love. This program began with a comedy, "The Young Sleuth Slipped Quietly Out The Door", based on a Nancy Drew mystery and concluded with Lucretius and Homer.
read review

Return of
“Griot New York”

Garth Fagan Dance
Rose Theater
New York, New York
November 9 and 11, 2005
by David Vaughan
copyright ©2005 by David Vaughan

There were some empty seats in the Rose Theater at Lincoln Center for the single performance of  “Griot New York” on November 9th. This was too bad, for this is a magnificent work, one of the most distinguished collaborations of recent years: choreography by Garth Fagan, music by Wynton Marsalis (played live by him and his Septet), design (a stroke of genius, this) by the great American sculptor Martin Puryear. “Griot” was first performed at BAM in December 1991, and then was the subject of a PBS “Dance in America” program in 1995, but since then has been seen in New York only in excerpt, usually without live music. In its entirety, it looked even better this time.
read review

Talk Amongst Yourselves

Sally Silvers & Dancers 25th Anniversary Season
Performance Space 122
New York, NY
November 17-20, 2005

by Lisa Rinehart
copyright ©2005 by Lisa Rinehart

Sally Silvers has said of her work, "I am in love with the body as an instrument of visible thought and imagination," and her dances reflect the unevenness of a lightly edited conversation on those topics. Her women gyrate, tip toe, collapse to the floor, stare at the audience, and stomp across the stage with a purposeful vigor that's one part intimidating to two parts ingratiating. And although there's some predictability in the "look at the passionate woman flinging herself around" rawness, the dances contain much that's delicate, humorous and remarkably structured.
read review

Muddled Metaphors

Rebecca Stenn Company
"Blue Print" (2005)
Danspace Project
New York City
November 10, 2005

by Nancy Dalva
copyright ©2005 by Nancy Dalva

Not since "Cats" have I seen a theatrical entertainment based on T.S. Eliot, but here's another, with "Four Quartets" the poetry in question. The work in question is Rebecca Stenn's "Blue Print." She springs from Momix, and thus from Pilobolus ( from whence also springs Martha Clarke, the mistress of the fusion format for a couple of decades). Besides the Eliot text, original music, with the musicians consorting on stage with the five dancers while playing, is a  major component of the piece. (The score ranges from the melodic to squawkish, with Dave Aggar, Jay Weissman, and Tom Chiu the instrumentalists.) While they are, from what I could gather, excellent musicians, they are lousy dancers, particularly when pussy-footing around barefoot while playing stringed instruments. Stenn's dancers are, as dancers tend to be these days, abundantly capable, but she is not. At least not here with this piece,  which she has "conceived and directed."  "Blue Print" is conceptual all right, but it's also confused.
read review

To find out how you can support this site, click here.

Search this site or
the web powered by FreeFind

Site search Web search

What's On This Week
Index of Writers

Back Issues
About Us



Mindy Aloff
Dale Brauner
Mary Cargill
Christopher Correa
Clare Croft
Nancy Dalva
Rita Felciano
Marc Haegeman
George Jackson
Eva Kistrup
Gia Kourlas
Alan M. Kriegsman
Sali Ann Kriegsman
Alexander Meinertz
Gay Morris
Ann Murphy
Paul Parish
John Percival
Tom Phillips
Naima Prevots
Susan Reiter
Lisa Rinehart
Charlotte Shoemaker
Jane Simpson
Alexandra Tomalonis (Editor)
Lisa Traiger
Kathrine Sorley Walker
Leigh Witchel
David Vaughan


The Autumn Issue of DanceView is OUT!
(subscribe on line)

Review of the Bolshoi Ballet's Met Season by Mary Cargill.

Robert Greskovic reviews several new DVD releases.

A chapter from Alexander Meinertz's forthcoming biography of Vera Volkova (dealing with Volkova at Sadler's Wells during the War)

Interviews with Sonja Rodriquez and Heather Ogden (National Ballet of Canada), by Denise Sum

Paul Taylor at the Guggenheim, by Nancy Dalva

Reports from London (Jane Simpson) and San Francisco (Rita Fellciano).

This site is the online supplement to DanceView, a quarterly review of dance published since 1979.

DanceView is available by subscription ONLY. Don't miss it. It's a good read.  Black and white, 48 pages, no ads. Subscribe today!



Copyright © 2005 by DanceView
last updated on November 14, 2005