December 2016
Kerala Kalamandalam in Dussasana Vadhom.© Kevin Yatarola. (Click image for larger version)

Memorable Performances of 2016 – New York

Marina Harss with her personal selection of New York dance memories this last year…

Alina Cojocaru and Cesar Corrales in Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

English National Ballet – Nutcracker – London

★★★✰✰   For all the recent innovations that Tamara Rojo has brought to the English National Ballet, including three stunning full-evening programmes of her own devising, the Nutcracker is still the heart of every season…

Robert Rauschenberg and Susan Weil: Untitled (ca. 1950).Monoprint: exposed blueprint paper.209.6 x 92.1 cm, Private collection.© Robert Rauschenberg. (Click image for larger version)

Exhibition – Robert Rauschenberg, Tate Modern – London

Though Rauschenberg’s designs have no apparent connection with the dances they accompany, and even compete for the audience’s attention, they have become inescapably part of the experience of each work.

Dancers leaping downstage from left, Tori Jahn, Colleen Soltys and Alysia Chang in Graham Lustig's Nutcracker.© Dan Dion. (Click image for larger version)

Oakland Ballet Company – The Nutcracker – Oakland

★★★✰✰   Set in early-20th-century Vienna, this Nutcracker is welcoming and unpretentious, and it moves as briskly as a storybook.

Ashley Shaw in The Red Shoes.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

New Adventures – Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes – London

★★★✰✰   If you remember the 1948 film, the plot is easy to follow. If you don’t, and can’t pick up the references to ballets, a printed scenario would be helpful, as would job-descriptions of the characters…

Sarah Lamb and Vadim Muntagirov in The Sleeping Beauty.© Foteini Christofilopoulou, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Royal Ballet in The Sleeping Beauty

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Aaron Loux and Billy Smith in The Hard Nut.© Julieta Cervantes. (Click image for larger version)

Mark Morris Dance Group – The Hard Nut – New York

★★★★✰   Few alternative takes on tradition survive this long and The Hard Nut remains as subversive as it is satisfying.

Corey Annand in Arthur Pita's The Little Match Girl.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Arthur Pita – The Little Match Girl – London

★★★★✰   The Little Match Girl is small-scale, but it’s pretty spectacular all the same – a sweet and witty alternative to the typical Christmas family fare.

Ashley Shaw in The Red Shoes.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – New Adventures in Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes

Gallery by Dave Morgan…

Alina Cojocaru and James Forbat in Nutcracker.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – English National Ballet in Nutcracker

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in Hope Boykin's r-Evolution, Dream.© Paul Kolnik. (Click image for larger version)

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – Four Corners, Untitled America, r-Evolution, Dream, Revelations – New York

★★★★✰   There is no limit to how often one can see Ailey’s 1960 masterpiece Revelations. The elation is always the same.

Oleg Gabyshev and Lyubov Andreyeva in Up & Down.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Eifman Ballet – Up & Down – London

★★★✰✰   In truth, the ballet is up and down (or, more accurately, down and up) for, overall, the second act is a huge improvement on the first.

Nicholas Strafaccia, Gerald Casel and Samuel Wentz in Fluster.© Tim Russell. (Click image for larger version)

GERALDCASELDANCE – Cover Your Mouth When You Smile, Thirdperson, Fluster – San Francisco

★★★✰✰   Evaluating works in progress is a peculiar exercise. Without knowing what parts of a dance are complete or still conceptual, or where they fit within the context of a larger yet to be created piece a review is a guessing game.

Oleg Gabyshev in Up & Down.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Gallery – Eifman Ballet in Up & Down

Gallery by Foteini Christofilopoulou…

Company of Elders in Home Turf.© Foteini Christofilopoulou. (Click image for larger version)

Company of Elders – Art of Age II – London

★★✰✰✰   Sad to say, then, that I found Art of Age II rather disappointing…

Aleksandra Mijalkova (Cleopatra), Vasil Chichiashvili (Cesar) and Boban Kovachevski (Mark Antony) in Cleopatra.© Macedonian Opera and Ballet. (Click image for larger version)

Macedonian Ballet – Cleopatra in rehearsal – Skopje

How do you review a world premiere that you have spent seven hours flying to, and then find that it has been postponed until you are back home after another eight hours of travel?

Botis Seva's Women of Sun.© Chris Nash. (Click image for larger version)

Botis Seva – Women of Sun – London

★★★✰✰   It is rare to find young choreographers developing a distinctive movement language and Seva is certainly one of the most original emerging talents in UK.

Katherine Helen Fisher in Pastime.© John Sisley. (Click image for larger version)

Lucinda Childs Dance – Lucinda Childs: A Portrait – New York

★★★✰✰   The post-modernist Lucinda Childs is experiencing a bit of a comeback here in the US, after years of working abroad.

Zhang Jian and Zhu Yan in The Peony Pavilion.© Dave Morgan. (Click image for larger version)

National Ballet of China – The Peony Pavilion – London

★★★✰✰   Peony Pavilion has become a signature work for the National Ballet of China and it’s easy to see why it has come back.

DanceTabs © 2017 All Rights Reserved

© All here is copyright DanceTabs and the author concerned. Do not steal our words or pictures please. Thank you.