writers on dancing

The DanceView Times, Washington, D.C. edition

       Volume 1, Number 2      An online supplement to DanceView magazine

Women Solo—
Dance Place Season Opener

Together By Ourselves
The first of "Two evenings of works by leading Washington women choreographers and performers"
Program 1
Dance Place
Saturday, September 20, 2003

By George Jackson
© 2003

...On the program were 8 solos (one a doubled solo). Sometimes I've wondered whether the dance solo is really choreography. Is it truly a work of art the way even a duo can be? Solos certainly need not lack form. Yet it's not the objective sequences of these dances—their patterns, their structures—that are foremost in the audience's perception. Or in memory. When thinking of the great solos, it is impossible to ignore or forget them as manifestations of emotion, or will power, or character or enigma that the dancer and/or maker generates. Pavlova's Fokine swan was about sadness, Wigman's witch about meanness, Rudy Perez's Countdown about solitude. Because there's no one else on stage to limit expression, or respond to it, the solo doesn't provide the audience with built-in navigating tools. One reacts to the solo's totality as if dance plus dancer equals one entity, a being larger than life. Several of the Washington women didn't disappoint in that respect, and the program as a whole showed diverse ways of achieving results.

Shared Paths

Program 2
Dance Place
Saturday, September 20, 2003

By Lisa Traiger
© 2003

It's impossible to deny Carla Perlo her due; she deserves applause and support for her visionary ideals that have over the past two-plus decades shaped the Washington, D.C. dance community. By sheer force of will in the face of increasingly parsimonious funding cuts and ever-rising production costs, Perlo has nurtured the nation's capital's most prolific dance presenter, Dance Place, which opened its 23rd season on Sept. 20 and 21. Presenting 48 weeks of performance each year, Dance Place remains the hub of the D.C. dance community, offering modern, African, percussive, non-Western dance and performance art week in, week out. But to kick off the season, Perlo looked to her peers: Uncommon women who have made dance their lives and made Washington the home in which they live and dance.

"Together By Ourselves," as Perlo named the opener, refers to the solo nature of the programs, to the sense of shared space and shared paths these women have trod, and to, what Perlo finds is a vernacular pun. "These are really together women," she notes, with admiration for the 15 colleagues who participated over two evenings. Sunday's program, choreographed by and for a cadre of strong, beautiful women who continue to dance, teach, perform, produce and advocate for the next generation well into what we Americans ungracefully call middle age, show little diminishment in body, and only growth in spirit and presence on stage. Not one of the performers on Sunday's program was on the near side of 40, and some have unselfconsciously stretched the prescribed bounds of dance performance well into their 50s and 60s.

Unanswered questions

Nijinsky's Last Dance
Kennedy Center Terrace Theater
Aug. 27-Sept. 14, 2003

By Lisa Traiger
© 2003

"I am Nijinsky!" declares Jeremy Davidson in the opening moments of playwright Norman Allen's sketch of the great dancer and even greater choreographer. It's wishful and wistful thinking, to say the—least. Nijinsky, legendary for his boundless leaps, his tradition-defying choreography and his brief but historic career—just nine years—truncated by mental illness, was an artist and a personality of unrepeatable world-renowned. But Allen's 90-minute, intermissionless one-man show is more gloss on the star than either a biography or even psychological or artistic portrait. "Nijinsky's Last Dance," which received a Helen Hayes Washington Theater Award for outstanding new play four years ago, was revived by Arlington, Va.'s Signature Theater for the Kennedy Center's fall Prelude Festival, a fortnight sampling of performing arts from blue-grass to zydeco, ballet to "The Wizard of Oz," meant to entice audiences to Washington's largest and most prolific performing arts center.



George Piper Dances at Lisner Auditorium October 21, 2003

The Ballet Boyz

George Piper Dances
Sadler's Wells Theatre
London, England
September 23-27, 2003

By Jane Simpson
© 2003

The story so far: The Ballet Boyz are William Trevitt and Michael Nunn, who left the Royal Ballet in 1999 to join Tetsuya Kumakawa's K-Ballet in Japan. Disillusionment set in after a couple of years, and they returned to London to set up their own company. It's official name is George Piper Dances (George and Piper being their middle names), but most people still talk about 'the Ballet Boyz', which was the title of a series of television films they made about their last season with the Royal Ballet and their time in Japan. One of their trademarks is that they've continued to use video film of themselves— rehearsals, cities they've played in and so on as linkage for their programmes—this can be a bit blokey/jokey but they're getting better at it. The Kiev-trained Oxana Panchenko has danced with GPD almost from the beginning, and for the current tour they've increased the company to five for the first time.

Letter from the Editor:

Welcome to the first edition of danceviewdc, an online newspaper covering dance events in the Nation's capital and as many of the surrounding regions as we can get to.

Our interest is simple:  we're a group of writers who want to provide the dance coverage that many newspapers can't. Their limitations are mostl ones of space; ours will be of time. We can't promise comprehensive coverage; all of us have other commitments. But we'll cover as much as we can, both Washington-based companies and visitors.

To presenters and companies: please send us your calendar listings to  To Washington's dance fans, please read us and tell your friends!—Alexandra Tomalonis

News Brief:

Interzone, by Washington-based choreographer Vladimir Angelov, whose works have been danced by the  San Francisco and Kirov Ballets, as well as many other companies, received its premiere on Ballet Internationale's first program of the season.

Writing in the Indianapolis Star (September 27, 2003), Whitney Smith wrote: "The world premiere of "Interzone," by Bulgarian-American choreographer Vladimir Angelov, led Ballet Internationale in something of a new direction. Strongly grounded in Russian-style classical ballet, the company took a calculated risk with an edgy piece that bucked tradition." Smith concluded by saying: "Stylistically, "Interzone" made passing reference to ballet conventions, including women who move on and off point, yet the piece also embraced moves reminiscent of music videos. The company seemed to welcome the change. Even when they played clans at odds, they danced in solidarity."—A.T.



Back issues

Index of Reviews
Back Issues
About Us
Contact Us

Sister Sites:
Ballet Alert! Online
Ballet Talk
Ballet Blogs


This weeks' articles


Mindy  Aloff's Letter from New York

The Balanchine Celebration
New York City Ballet:
A Veteran and a Raw Recruit
by Mindy Aloff

Heart and Soul
by Mary Cargill

Kid Stuff
Cas Public's If You Go Down To the Woods Today
by Susan Reiter

San Francisco Ballet:
New Wheeldon (Rush)
by Rita Felciano

New Tomasson (7 For Eight)
by Paul Parish

Possokhov's New Firebird for OBT
by Rita Felciano

Moscow Festival Ballet and Scott Wells
by Paul Parish

Hamburg Ballet's Nijinsky:
Nijinsky—Lost in the Chaos
by Clare Croft

NijinskyMadness and Metaphor
by Alexandra Tomalonis

Nijinsky and the Ballets Russes
by George Jackson

Batsheva: Breaking Down Walls
by Lisa Traiger

Ronald K. Brown/Evidence
by Clare Croft

Choreographers Showcase
by Tehreema Mitha

Zoltan Nagy
by George Jackson






Clare Croft
George Jackson
Jean Battey Lewis
Sali Ann Kriegsman
Tehreema Mitha

Alexandra Tomalonis (Editor)
Lisa Traiger


The Autumn DanceView is out:

New York City Ballet's Spring 2003 season reviewed by Gia Kourlas

An interview with the Kirov Ballet's Daria Pavlenko by Marc Haegeman

Reviews of San Francisco Ballet (by Rita Felciano) and Paris Opera Ballet (by Carol Pardo)

The ballet tradition at the Metropolitan Opera (by Elaine Machleder)

Reports from London (Jane Simpson) and the Bay Area (Rita Felciano).

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

DanceView is published quarterly (January, April, July and October) in Washington, D.C. Address all correspondence to:

P.O. Box 34435
Washington, D.C. 20043


Copyright ©2003 by by DanceView
last updated on October 7, 2003