"San Francisco" tag
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in Revelations.© Christopher Duggan. (Click image for larger version)

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – Odetta, Bad Blood, Caught, Revelations – San Francisco

The company has performed here annually since 1968 and considers Berkeley its home away from home, both for the synergy it feels with the Cal Performances staff and the receptive local audience.

Frances Chung in Ratmansky's Piano Concerto #1 from Shostakovich Trilogy.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Program 6: Shostakovich Trilogy – San Francisco

It’s a disconcerting feeling when you don’t respond to a piece that nearly everyone else agrees is revelatory. That’s the situation I find myself in with Alexei Ratmansky’s Shostakovich Trilogy.

Robb Beresford, Babatunji and Michael Montgomery in Biophony.© Quinn B. Wharton. (Click image for larger version)

Alonzo King LINES Ballet – Biophony, Concerto for Two Violins – San Francisco

…for the world premiere of Biophony, King collaborated with the entire natural world….

Derrick Agnoletti and Aaron Rogers in Alexander Ekman's Episode 31.© Cheryl Mann. (Click image for larger version)

Joffrey Ballet – Incantations, Son of Chamber Symphony, Bells, Episode 31 – San Francisco

As always, it’s a pleasure to see the Joffrey Ballet, especially since 2007 when artistic director Ashley Wheater assumed his post and began a terrific revival of the company…

Josie G. Sadan in The Invention of Wings by Brenda Way and KT Nelson.© Andrew Weeks photography. (Click image for larger version)

ODC/Dance – Dead Reckoning, The Invention of Wings – San Francisco

ODC boasts world-class contemporary dancers, and they moved with weight, intention and a compelling tenderness…

Mathilde Froustey and Carlos Quenedit in Tomasson/Possokhov's Don Quixote.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Don Quixote – San Francisco

Principal dancers Mathilde Froustey and Carlos Quenedit were exactly what the audience wanted on opening night.

Wrecking Dissolver: Courtney Moreno, Peiling Kao, Erin Mei-Ling Stuart and Aura Fischbeck.© Christy Funsch. (Click image for larger version)

Wrecking and Deconstructing Dance – Christy Funsch with Rowena Richie, Megan Nicely and Keith Hennessy in San Francisco

Developed in 1995 by New York choreographer Susan Rethorst, Dance Wrecking entails inviting colleagues to view your in-progress work, then granting them freedom to “wreck” it…

Mathilde Froustey In Robbins' Dances at a Gathering.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Dances at a Gathering, Hummingbird – San Francisco

San Francisco Ballet’s Program 4 is a double bill coupling a welcome return of Robbins’ Dances at a Gathering with a Liam Scarlett’s Hummingbird.

Norika Matsuyama and Steven Morse in Thatcher's Manifesto.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Program 3 including Myles Thatcher premiere – San Francisco

Program 3 features Hans van Manen’s Variations for Two Couples, William Forsythe’s The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude, Manifesto by Myles Thatcher and “The Kingdom of the Shades” from La Bayadère.

Maria Kochetkova in Tomasson's Giselle.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Giselle – San Francisco

…Kochetkova and Luiz told the tale beautifully…

Yuan Yuan Tan and Pascal Molat in Possokhov's RAkU.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Prog 1: Serenade, RAkU, Lambarena – San Francisco

America’s oldest ballet company, San Francisco Ballet, opened its eighty-second season with a triple bill that encapsulates the uniquely varied repertory developed by artistic director Helgi Tomasson…

Maria Kochetkova and Davit Karapetyan in Possokhov's Bells.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Infinite Romance: 2015 Season Opening Night Gala – San Francisco

The SF Ballet premiere of choreographer-in-residence Yuri Possokhov’s pas de deux from Bells is my all-round favorite of the evening. Sublime dancing from Maria Kochetkova and Davit Karapetyan…

Wendy Whelan and Brian Brooks in First Fall by Brian Brooks.© Dave Morgan, courtesy the Royal Opera House. (Click image for larger version)

Wendy Whelan – Restless Creature bill – San Francisco

Ultimately, it mattered less what Whelan and her collaborators were doing, and more that they were doing.

© San Francisco Ballet

World Ballet Day – Global First: Five World-Class Ballet Companies, One Day of Live Streaming on Wednesday 1 October

Starting at the beginning of the dancers’ day, each of the five ballet companies – Australian Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, The Royal Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada and San Francisco Ballet – will take the lead for a four hour period streaming live from their headquarters…

Yuan Yuan Tan and Davit Karapetyan in Tomason's Giselle.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – Giselle – San Francisco

Though Tan dances with a wonderful lightness and an elegance not quite suited to a naïve peasant girl, she never really emotionally engages with the ardent Karapetyan, who possesses nuanced acting and strong technique, and deserves to have a partner who can match his level of commitment to crafting a role.

Sarah Van Patten and Anthony Spaulding in Hans van Manen's Variations for Two Couples.© Erik Tomasson. (Click image for larger version)

San Francisco Ballet – 2014 Opening Night Gala – San Francisco

The best all-round piece of the evening is Hans van Manen’s Variations for Two Couples, from the exquisitely concise choreography by this still-relevant master…

Scott Wells and Christoph Schutz in Father On.© David Papas. (Click image for larger version)

Scott Wells & Dancers – Father On – San Francisco

Ah, the brilliance of brevity. Scott Wells & Dancers plunge straight into Father On with a thirty-second audio track that sums up courtship, marriage,and conception.

Christopher Bordenave in Idan Sharabi's Spider on a Mirror.© Sandy Lee. (Click image for larger version)

Zhukov Dance Theatre – Enlight, Spider on a Mirror – San Francisco

At times the choreography doesn’t seem to fit this space… Nonetheless, the dancers do a remarkable job with what they are given.

Jeffrey Van Sciver, David Harvey, Robb Beresford, Meredith Webster and Michael Montgomery in Writing Ground.© Margo Moritz. (Click image for larger version)

Alonzo King LINES Ballet – Concerto for Two Violins, Writing Ground – San Francisco

Quite by accident I ended up seeing LINES Ballet’s fall season twice. A good thing I did, too.

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Nederlands Dans Theater – Sehnsucht, Schmetterling – San Francisco

This visit by the internationally acclaimed troupe met half of my high expectations – the dancers were as spectacular as ever.

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