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Millepied & Company

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Nice article & photo of Benjamin in today's NY TIMES.

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John Rockwell's review from today's New York Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/16/arts/dan...pib&oref=slogin

It's an odd review, I think - Rockwell first talks about two pieces he doesn't like, then circles around to say that Millepied's own composition was actually quite lovely. Where were the Times' copy editors?

It's amazing that all the City Ballet dancers found time to rehease these pieces in the midst of the winter season.

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I went to the final performance. The piece I was most curious to see, PHRASES, NOW was cancelled due to an injury (the notice didn't say who was injured). I was impressed by SILENCE TEXT, a dark ballet which it seems to me is very demanding of the dancers. The superb performers were Teresa Reichlen, Ellen Bar, Alina Dronova, Alex Ritter & Tyler Angle. Dronova revealed a striking dramatic presence, Reichlen's legs are electrifying and she ended the work balanced on her abdomen on Tyler Angle's feet (sort of like the childhood game of "flying angels")...they sustained this impossible pose for what seemed an eternity. Bar kept dipping into remarkable plies in second - on pointe! - and sustaining the balance. Ritter looks great, reminding me of his many excellent performances at NYCB, and Tyler Angle is maturing into a first class dancer & partner.

SHORT-LIVED was a title full of irony. The piece was way too long, devoid of any real interest in terms of steps or interaction of the dancers (except an odd, brief duet for the two boys). The juxtaposition of klezmer and early French baroque did nothing to enhance the piece.

After that, Benjamin's CLOSER came as a literal breath of fresh air. Clad in pajama style pants and a loose white tee shirt, Ben opened the piece with a beautiful solo - expansive, flowing combinations that seemed almost improvisational. He looks so light & handsome. Gillian Murphy wore similar pants and a halter top; her solo featured many classic turns, jumps & extensions from the ballerina vocabulary but done in soft slippers, and linked in floating lyricism. She is radiant. They then dance together, sustaining the airy feel of the piece which ends with a rather long segment for the two of them on the floor. Normally I don't like seeing dancers on the floor but Benjamin worked out a beautiful pattern of embraces and shifting positions which was quite hypnotic. The piece clearly entranced the audience and deserves to be seen again.

Edited by oberon

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