Robert Gottlieb Jr., ahh no, I meant Robert Johnson didn't pull any punches on this one:
"ABT's artistic director, Kevin McKenzie, would do ANYTHING to get a free premiere by Lubovitch, the untalented hack -- even offer an evening to the Greek tourist bureau.
This season, Ballet Theatre finds itself caught between the Scylla and Charybdis of "Artemis," and its other season premiere, "Hereafter," a hackneyed, neo-primitivist ritual which debuted last Friday in a set resembling an Aztec hamster cage.
The more McKenzie tries to turn ABT into a contemporary dance company, the more shockingly out of touch the man appears."
What is going on at ABT? I'll researve my comments on Artemis when it reappears for the second mixed bill, but I thought there was something wrong with this season when it was announced and there were more ballets by Welch (3) than by Tudor (1), whom McKenzie calls the concsience of ABT (what does that say about the company?). The company failed to build on the high from last summer's performances of two Ashton ballets with a lackluster City Center season that featured more Welch, more Weir and more Lubovitch. The choreographers used by the Studio Company are often more interesting and more rooted in the vocabulary of ballet than the trio ABT has hitched its wagon.
Yet the company should be on a high - it has great stars and some artists (can the company come up with a choreographer interested in doing a ballet for Ananiashvili), interesting dancers of both sexes - not just the men - and by many accounts the corps de ballet is doing its best work in years.