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Alexandra

Ballet companies and modern/contemporary dance

38 posts in this topic

LMTech posted some very interesting points on the Ballet in San Francisco thread, and I thought it might be a good idea to pull them out and start a new thread. (Terry raised some good questions as well, and may want to reraise them again here.)

This is what LMTech wrote: "I wonder though if the regional companies aren't doing story ballets and Balanchine/Ashton/ Macmillan because of the copyright/ expense issue. It is after all cheaper to make bad ballet than to stage good ballet.

"But I digress...how does all this affect SF?

Do you think it's good or bad that we have all this contemporary ballet here. I think it offers more dancers a chance to make a living. Dancers who don't fit the classical ballet mold.

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In response to LMTech's points:

First, I think expense is partly the reason, but not completely. Balanchine works are not expensive; Nacho Duato's are.

I'd also say that if there are dancers who can't dance ballet, then they shouldn't be in a ballet company. I know a choreographer who was invited to stage a work for something calling itself a ballet company. The director had already picked the dancers he wanted use -- something that's not usual, but that's not uncommon -- and when the choreographer outlined his ideas, he was told, "Oh, no. These girls don't dance well on pointe. We want something contemporary for them." To me, this is cheating the audience. I may like Broadway show tunes, I may like rock'n'roll, but when I buy a ticket to the symphony, I want to hear music commonly associated with a symphony. The notion that a conductor would say, "Well, we're really short of viola players and cellists this season so we brought in a synthesizer" would simply not be tolerated.

Whether it's good or bad -- I think it depends on the director. IMO, Helgi Tomasson is one of the better artistic directors. I don't worry when he acquires contemporary/crossover/modern dance works, because I know he knows that that's what they are. Tomasson seems to be acquiring ballets/dances that suit particular dancers, putting the dancers/performers first, in the interests of giving the audience a first-rate theatrical experience (a very European concept, btw). I think this is a perfectly acceptable way to direct a ballet company. I'd be surprised if he had a dancer who wasn't capable of performing in a classical ballet, and I think ballet is his first priority. Novelty works -- meaning everyone knows they're not deathless classics, but they suit the spirit of the times, or are just plain fun -- can be part of a serious repertory, I think, but everyone has to realize that these are novelties. The problem is when the audience screams its approval for Novelty Number 5 and the board says, "Great! Let's have a rep made up completely of these ballets" and the artistic director goes along with it (which I don't think would happen with SFB). So whether in San Francisco or New York or Detroit, I think it's great that there are a lot of companies where dancers can make a living, but if they're not dancing ballet, they're not dancing ballet. (There was a great answer to this on alt.arts.ballet once. "You can call roller skates ear muffs if you want to, but they won't keep your ears warm!" :) )

There are other companies, though, where the director is perhaps not as experienced nor as thoughtful as Tomasson and really can't make distinctions among different types of work, much less good, bad and indifferent work. This is what people who question the wisdom of putting contemporary dance works in a ballet company's repertory are usually screaming about. (I think there is a huge audience -- i.e., "market" -- for contemporary dance and would be very happy if some of the smaller companies would just admit that they're not ballet companies and call themselves contemporary dance companies. They're doing this in France and I think it's not only honest, but sensible.)

All of these discussions and questions are in an attempt to look at ballet in a broad context, beyond what I like, or what the dancers like, or what the boards think will sell, because ballet is such a fragile art form. Probably the main technical reason to be wary about contemporary dance in a ballet repertory is, as Joan Acocella once wrote, "If that's all they dance, pretty soon that's all they'll be able to dance." That's a consideration as well.

Other thoughts?

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Originally posted by alexandra:

Probably the main technical reason to be wary about contemporary dance in a ballet repertory is, as Joan Acocella once wrote, "If that's all they dance, pretty soon that's all they'll be able to dance." That's a consideration as well.

Other thoughts?

Alexandra, that sounds exactly like what has happened at the Oakland Ballet: a few years ago, they were reviving Nijinska ballets like Bolero and Le Traine Bleu; now they are commissioning works from modern dancers and with "popular" scores. :) The effect on the dancers' technique is very obvious, unfortunately.

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I'm going to re-post something I wrote last June on the subject:

Pidge mentioned the shift in repertory in her home company, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens almost completely away from ballet.  I've seen this in other companies and wanted to make some (I hope) non-judgmental observations on the reasons.

1) It's easier and cheaper to maintain.  Contemporary ballets often require smaller casts and recorded music is more accepted, or even required.  Going beyond that, a classical work can be brutally exposing to dancers in a company with limited rehearsal time, a minimal budget and not enough money for the women to have decent pointe shoes all the time.  The right contemporary work in an effective production can make a company look more polished than it is.

2) Audiences like them.  Most audiences come to the theater for an entire theatrical sensation.  Some people come to see the dance, but just as many come to see also the lighting, the costumes and the overall picture.  The distinctions that we talk of here are immaterial to them.  If a dance is excitingly produced with good lighting and professional production elements, the dance becomes just another element in the treat.

3) There is an entire faction that believes in it.  There is a good portion of directors out there committed to eclectic repertory, many of them looking to the Joffrey ballet as their model.  And there is an audience devoted to contemporary repertory as well, actively preferring it to more classical.  With Les Grands, I'm not even certain I'd call their current choices much of a "shift".  They company seemed for a long time to have contemporary works as their center, with Netherlands Dance Theater as their model.  The times I've heard of them doing classical or neo-classical work (Giselle, Agon) are also the times I've heard them get unfavorable reviews. 

None of what I've said is disturbing, at least not to me, but the only rueful observation I'd make is that I consider true eclecticism to be very rare indeed.  The companies I've seen that shine in contemporary works tend not to do justice to more classical or neo-classical ones.  Dancers need to work on pointe assiduously to do it really well; classical port-de-bras and demeanor are not something you take down from a shelf when needed.  In small cities, for a dance company to survive it needs to be all things to all dance lovers, but sometimes it might be better to be one or the other.

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Well, my question is: shouldn't dancers even if they are classically trained, be able to dance any forms (but probably more towards contemporary), because ballet is really the foundation of all dance styles? Of course they should be able to dance the classics, but isn't part of the reason why contemporary dance is being offered greatly in SFB, for eg, is because these dancers are able to adjust to different forms and styles of dancing when demanded? It must be so difficult for the dancers because they have to be able to perform classical, neoclassical, and contemporary works.

Anyway, IMO, I think that dancers in major ballet companies today should be able to dance both contemporary and classical pieces. If they are professional dancers, then I think they should be able to dance both just as equally well. (But this doesn't always happen, of course.)

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I'm not sure modern dancers would agree that ballet is the foundation of all dance styles. I don't think dancers can dance all styles equally well. The more eclectic a repertory becomes, the less individual it becomes. Fine classical ballet technique is a very sophisticated combination of things. As Leigh wrote, style isn't something you can take off a shelf. It's not a hat, but bone and sinew and skin, something that's integral to the way a company moves.

The trend towards eclecticism in dance is a bit like the Wal-Martization of America. Many more people love, shop at, and work at Wal-Mart than at Sally's Hat Boutique, or Chanel (is there still a Chanel? Does it make polyester skorts in 29 lollipop colors for $19.99 each?), but that doesn't invalidate the loveliness of boutiques. In ballet, I don't believe Wal-Martization is inevitable. More and more dancers/balletmasters are becoming alarmed, as I wrote earlier, partly, I think, is because there was so much emphasis on the primacy of the choreographer that even balletmasters and dancers thought that style/technique was integral and would always be there. They're seeing it's not, and looking to the causes and moving to correct them. In the case of SFB, again, if it survives, and grows, as a classical company it will be because Tomasson keeps strict classical standards in the classroom AND provides enough of a core repertory that uses the dancers' classical technique.

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Terry - I've seen some dancers that can, but I don't think that versatility really is the greatest virtue of a dancer. Also, contemporary style is not interchangeable with classical style. The center of gravity is different, as is the attack and the port de bras. Neither style is like a coat you take on and off, you have to invest in them. Most importantly I don't want dancers to get so indoctrinated in versatility that they think they should dance Forsythe and Petipa with the same attack. Sure, be versatile, but not like a salad bar, and not at the expense of ballet.

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On a lighter note, why not add skating (ice or roller)? The Kennedy Center put in an ice rink for the Curry company; it needs to be used. And then we could move on to ice hockey; same thing. For the spring season, we could do Irish step dancing (Riverdance like you've never seen it before) and have a hula competition. How versatile shall we be :)

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Well then, why do these major ballet companies including POB, RB, ABT, SFB, Hamburg, etc, etc, etc, stick to this idea of contemporary and the classics if it isn't such a good idea as some of you seem to be implying (at least, that's the way it sounds to me, but if I'm wrong, then please let me know).

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Paris Opera Ballet is referred to, by many experts, as today's premier ballet company. Yet, they have, for about 20-25 years, combined the classics with modern ballet (Carolyn Carlson, et. al.). Modern & 'American Jazz' dancing are included in the POB Ecole's core curriculum. Has the POB deteriorated since its incursions into the territory of Modern Dance/Jazz? Has it improved? Just playing Devil's Advocate; I don't feel strongly, one way or another. But perhaps POB should be our Exhibit A in this discussion?

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POB is a very good case study. I was just reading an interview with Patrice Bart (balletmaster at POB) that Marc Haegeman did for the next DanceView -- this really isn't intended as a plug -- and he addressed this question. For Paris, no it hasn't hurt (and I'd agree with him) because they're so sure of their identity. (But remember, when they wanted to really do experimental dance, they set up a separate modern dance company for Carolyn Carlson. It wasn't mixed in with the regular company.) Their school is so strong that anything they dance takes on its flavor. (Bart made the point of how classical even Forsythe looked when POB danced it.)

One of the problems may well be that other companies look to Paris (some European companies do, at least) and copy them but, as people almost always do when they copy, they take the outside, what's visible -- the rep -- not all the things that go on beneath the rep.

Has the Royal deteriorated? IMO, absolutely, but dancing contemporary works is not the prime cause of that. (Nor, actually, do I think dancing contemporary/crossover works would ever be the prime cause of deterioration, as I tried to explain in the references to SFB above. It's direction.) Hamburg dances Neumeier, not a hodgepodge rep. Hamburg, ABT and SFB aren't in the same league with Paris, IMO.

Terry, would you want the Paul Taylor company to do "Four Temperaments" or "The Dream" or "Paquita?" Or, for that matter, Rambert Dance Company, or any other company that identifies itself as a contemporary dance company? That may be one way to look at the question for those who seem not to understand the point that the vocabulary, the very use of the body, is different. I can't emphasize this enough -- this is the point/problem/issue, not a question of taste, of whether you like the works or not. At some point, when a ballet company dances enough works that are not ballet, it ceases to become a ballet company.

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My point /question is, what is wrong with ballet companies doing contemporary pieces, when they can balance both repertories, and when they can still have a strong classical foundation and do it well? Of course, as many of you noted, POB would be the best example of this. If a company can't do both of them well, then they shouldn't be in the repertory; but POB, does both contemporary and classic pieces extremely well and that is why they have it in their repertory. Plus, they maintain the best standard of classical dance, IMO in the world today. Of course, contemporary dance has different dance vocabularies, no one I don't think would disagree with that, but, really, my question is why do classical ballet companies today increasingly dance both contemporary and classical pieces, when it is not the case other way around (and I think I would rather see a classical company do contemporary than a contemporary company do classics :))?

[ 06-27-2001: Message edited by: Terry ]

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[Apologies, this post is duplicative of Alexandra's, who was responding at the same time as me]

Jeannie -

Valid point. I think Paris (and I haven't seen the company enough, but Alexandra mentioned SFB exactly this way a few posts above) are examples of companies which keep their bedrock (which in their case, seems to be training rather than repertory) classical enough so that it remains home base, everything from it becomes an excursion rather than a mixture. What I've found interesting about POB is that they tend to dance everything classically (including Le Parc and Forsythe's work) rather than the other way around. In another sense, I'm not sure POB and the top companies who have dancers at that pinnacle of technique can be used as a useful model in this aspect when you start travelling down the ladder of companies.

Also, and I ask this of someone who sees POB with more frequency than myself, given the extreme size of the company, and overlap of a certain amount, has the company formed itself into "wings", certain dancers tend to do the more classical rep, others the more contemporary? I had heard that was what had happened at another large European mixed company, Dutch National Ballet.

[ 06-27-2001: Message edited by: Leigh Witchel ]

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Alexandra & Leigh - I now understand perfectly your explanation of the POB phemomenon (great at both classical & modern). In my visits to POB & by watching them on TV-video, it seems that most etoiles and principal dancers are extremely versatile - even than Queen of Classicism, Platel, was amazingly wonderful in Neumeier's Sylvia!

Anxiously awaiting Estelle & other POB-regulars' comments....

Funny thing in all this is the fact that ABT has a greater/older tradition of eclecticism than does POB...yet ABT doesn't seem to fare as highly in experts' opinions than does POB. Perhaps this is due to ABT's dancers coming from so many dance academies, not just in the USA but around the world? Yet..how many ballet troupes can afford to maintain a filial-academy...and to populate its professional company *only* with dancers from said academy? Are the 80% of ballet troupes without an affiliated school (or without sufficient graduates from that school to merit a place in the company) in this world doomed to mediocrity?

[ 06-27-2001: Message edited by: Jeannie ]

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A few points that I forgot, re Terry's and Jeannie's very sensible questions above.

First, the Royal Ballet's decline, which is very well-documented, began in the mid-1970s, when contemporary ballets began to seap into the repertory. From the time I came to ballet I've been reading "Ah! Finally things are beginning to be put right" followed by, in a few months, "Well, maybe not...."

Second, some critics I know who have the opportunity to watch Paris Opera Ballet more closely than I have been sounding alarms there for the past three years. One negative effect contemporary ballets do have is that, paradoxically, they don't develop individuals in the same way classical ballet seems to do. Several people have written (and I think they're right) that when the last of the Nureyev etoiles retires, the chinks in the Paris armor will be very visible. Also, the current director of the POB is very contemporary-oriented. They're still classical because of their school, and because there are people who believe in classical ballet on the staff. When they go, all bets are off.

Third, I'd nominate as Exhibit A the Royal Danish Ballet in the 1970s, when nearly everyone, Danish and foreign critics, noticed a decline. The director benched the two classical ballerinas, there was no male classical star, and the repertory was nearly completely very small-scale (i.e., 8 to 12 people) modern dances or theater pieces. This had an enormous effect on the quality of the way the classical repertory -- on the one or two programs a year it was performed -- was danced. Danish television broadcast two or three RDB telecasts a year throughout this period, so there is a lot of evidence. The RDB came back, briefly, when the directorship changed and classical ballets began to dominate the repertory again. It wasn't just the scheduling of those ballets, however, but the fact that the three people staging/coaching/directing them knew how to bring them back.

Finally, ABT is also an interesting study, from the opposite point of view. Robbins and DeMille were very upset in the mid-1960s when they heard Lucia Chase was going to stage "Swan Lake" and argued passionately against it, partly because they thought the company really wasn't up to it, but mostly because they knew that it meant a shift in emphasis away from contemporary and experimental works like theirs (which were ballet; "contemporary" in the sense of "made last year" not in the sense of a genre). Critics have pounded ABT since that first "Swan Lake" that, although they often have excellent principals, they're off-the-mark in presentation and classical style.

So that's the view from history :) I can't do the Russian companies justice and so won't try.

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Alexandra, one question:

You mention about 2 great RDB principals during the 1970s. Was one of them Eva Evdokimova? I understand that she had been RDB school trained, and IMO was a wonderful Bournonville dancer.

Thanks.

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Thanks, Alexandra - eloquently stated, as always. Right-on.

I'm far from a Russian Expert but have watched & followed the Kirov for some 20-25 years and, indeed, I see a few flashes of 'Trouble in River City' (the River Neva, that is). Most Westerners don't see these troubles, as the Kirov rarely, if ever, performs the questionable works abroad. I am refering to certain 'modern ballet evenings' that have been presented during the past 3-4 years. No, not the wonderful Balanchines; rather, the "Ratmansky Ballet Evening"...or "Roland Petit Evening"..or that short-lived fiasco ca 1997, "Goya." I can't speak for the new "Nutcracker," as I haven't seen it but some might place it in the loser category. As for the future, be on the look-out for the Kirov's "Neumeier Evening" promised for autumn 2001. I'll hope for the best. :) As a result of these new, sudden forces in the Kirov repertoire, there may be a deterioration in the quality of the soloists...all those 180-degree Guillem extensions and such. The corps is still pure-gold in the classics...but how long will Nina Ukhova (the female corps' legendary coach)be around? Nina - eat your Wheaties!

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Terry, Eva Evdokimova was one of the dancers trained "outside the walls" that Flemming Flindt took into the company (meaning not only foreigners, but anyone not trained at the RDB school had been barred beforehand) but she wasn't a principal there and left because, according to dancers of that generation, because she was told she wouldn't become a principal there -- because she was foreign born.

The two benched classical ballerinas were Kirsten Simone and Anna Laerkesen. It's not that they were literally benched, of course, but they simply weren't often cast.

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I think the comments on the training are very astute. If a company keeps its classical focus in class, they tend to be more successful all around.

I think one of ABT's problems is that they have such limited rehearsal time, they can't spend much time of issues of style and choreographic intention.

And I think a lot of a company's success depends on the company's ability to accurately carry out the choreographer's vision.

I would also not want to see Paul Taylor do 4Ts or Mark Morris do Giselle. I also don't want to see ABT do the Hard Nut (they don't have the acting ability) . And I have been VERY disappointed in all the ballet company performances I have seen of any of Paul Taylor's works (lack of emotional depth.

Now here's my next question, Alexandra. How do you make the distinction between Contemporary ballet and modern dance. I have my ideas, but at the present moment I'm having trouble putting them into words. I think it goes beyond "Ballet is in pointe shoes. Modern is barefoot..."

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Lemme take a whack at this one, LMC.

I think the reason you're having trouble making a terminology distinction is that while ballet is codified, and Graham technique also is, "modern" and "contemporary" dance mean different things to different people and at one time or another, both were used as catch-all terms. At this point, I consider Graham or Taylor to choreograph Modern dance, but not, say, David Gordon, who does post-Modern work.

Maybe a useful distinction would be to consider "Modern" dance as being one of the forms which does not use ballet technique as a root form for its vocabulary and "contemporary" for those that do? By that distinction, Duato, Kylian, Tetley, Neumeier would be contemporary. The problem with "Modern" as I know the term is that it leaves out Pina Bausch, The Judson Church and many others; I just want to clarify that between the terms "modern" and "contemporary", one hasn't described every form of dance that isn't ballet.

[ 06-27-2001: Message edited by: Leigh Witchel ]

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Jeannie, we were posting at the same time -- from the little I've seen of the Russian companies, I agree with your analysis. (And I also think it's important to point out that often when we only see a company a few times it's hard to tell what's going on because we're not getting the whole picture. Did we get a bad night? A bad cast? Or is "Swan Lake" really on the skids? -- rhetorical question) I think the problem will be if the dancers and backstage people think that Neumeier/Petit/Bejart, etc., are better than Petipa -- not different from and fun to do, but better than.

LMCTech, I think it's harder to differentiate between contemporary and modern than between those two and ballet, because modern dance has been so fluid. I'm as alarmed at the changes -- deterioration, if you will -- in modern dance as I am in ballet, but I hold back from crusading against it because I believe that modern dance has reinvented itself in each generation and it's up to each generation to define it.

I agree with what Leigh wrote -- that there are a lot of different definitions for "contemporary dance" and I don't think the dust has settled on that one yet. (Believe it or not, a lot of what I write on aesthetic issues is an attempt to explain the current thinking, not just my own opinion.) Personally, I wouldn't use "contemporary" unless the choreographer/company did, or to mean "made last year" or last week.

I start with vocabulary as the basis for any definition. I call what I'm seeing in ballet companies "crossover dance" or "ballet-moderne" or "hybrid dance". Crossover is when, say, Lila York or Mark Morris makes a work for a ballet company (they're crossing over from one artform to another), hybrid is like Glen Tetley and John Butler (who blend some of each; one witty friend said "they've taken the artificality of ballet and the awkwardness of modern dance.") "Ballet moderne" is this stuff that really isn't either. I'd call Kylian modern dance, but would be happy to stand corrected on that -- but I see him as starting from a modern dance base that goes beyond expressionism and is rooted in technique. Nacho Duato imports whole chunks of modern dance works -- Graham, Limon -- into his work and the notion that he's doing anything new galls me. It might be pretty and fun to watch, but new? No way.

Perhaps "contemporary" is the best description for the work of most of the younger choreographers now, but a lot of it looks like just plain dance to me -- a little of this and a little of that.

One parallel between what's happening in ballet generally and in what happened in modern dance is that, in modern, once upon a time, you could tell by looking at a dancer whether he was Graham or Limon or Humphrey or Horton or Cunningham. Then there was a generation of teachers that had a Graham base and went on to Cunningham. Then the next generation took the Graham floor and the Horton bar, and liked that (as my modern teacher in grad school said) "Cunningham movement is all centered in the head." This generation knew exactly what it was doing and from where it was taking what movement and what theory -- BUT their students didn't. It was all Ms. Jones's class (or whoever was the teacher). Now they are teaching.

So it all gets diluted and blended and nothing is anything any more.

If I could wave a wand, I'd make lots of contemporary dance companies -- not modern, not ballet, but contemporary -- and then the other two would be separated out and go back to doing what they once did very well.

I'd like to thank Terry and LMCTech for asking such good questions and continuing to make this a dialogue as well as for being interested in understanding this issue. I'm not looking for agreement, nor to try to convert anyone away from contemporary dance to ballet, but to try to look at the effects of some things that may seem harmless or pleasant. I bring this up every time the question comes up, but you might be interested in reading the interview with Bruce Marks on the main site in the Ballet Alert! Sampler. He was one of the leaders in bringing -- urging -- crossover dance on ballet companies and as a dancer went from modern to ballet. But one day he looked at his dancers doing a Graham ballet (ballet in the sense of "a dance work") and said, "This isn't what my dancers are trained to do."

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Leigh, I like your definition based on vocabulary. Ithink I can live and work with that.

Alexandra, I like what you say about the different modern techniques blending into nothing. I am a dancer of that latter generation you mentioned. I am just now after ten years of modern dance training starting to realize where "all this stuff" I've been doing is coming from. And a lot more stuff is startng to come in from ethnic dance, too. (But that is another topic.)I also like the idea of a third type of company. I think some people have been trying to create just such a genre, but they haven't yet been successful.

Next question - Do you think the same thing is happening in ballet classrooms as in modern classrooms? When parents call the school I work for asking which technique we teach I give them a line written by the administration to placate such calls, but the truth is no one style is being uniformly taught by all. Could this be another factor in the mushing of the ballet world.

In college they went over all the different terminology we were supposed to use in reference to the different dance chorographers we were studying (modern, post-modern, contemporary). I always found them difficult to use, because so many 20th (and 21st) century dance makers didn't fit in the categories very well. I'm having an even harder time applying those terms to ballet.

Do you think there is anything we can do as audience members to stem the tide of mush?

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The neat thing about modern dance -- at least in theory -- is that, since it continually reinvents itself, if modern dancers really care about these issues, they can deal with it. All it takes is one Isadora searching for her solar plexus, and we're back in business :) (For me, the most disturbing thing about the modern dance evolution is that the whole point of it was to be expressive, and we've lost that. Nanatchka and others would disagree, of course.)

I definitely think a similar thing has happened in ballet technique. A generation ago, people could look at a dancer and tell where he had been trained. I don't think you can tell that now -- I'm not sure even a teacher could tell that, certainly not in all cases. It's interesting to go back and reread the reviews of ABT in the classics. In the 1960s, it's "Yay! Our team can do Swan Lake!!!!" The thought was that refinements would come later. In the 1970s, it's, "ABT needs serious help in coaching classical style." (Croce et al.) In the 1980s, more of the same. In the 1990s -- the stylistic mush has become accepted by most, I think, and the emphasis is all on technique -- understandable, because ABT has such wonderful dancers. All of this is compounded by the fact that Americans seem congenitally driven to watch dancers' legs at the expense of everything else, so "upper body dancers" never had a real chance here.

What can we do as audience members? Good question. Be aware. Know what you're watching. Give feedback to companies. Don't fall into the "they really can't do the classics well and look so much better in the contemporary stuff" trap. When the nice telemarketer calls to renew your subscription and says, "And there's the all new program!!!!!" try to let them know that the word "new" doesn't necessarily sell it. "But is it good?" [Again, to avoid a misunderstanding, we have to have new works. We all pray for new works. But "new" and "good" aren't synonyms.]

I don't know what else to do except play the boy in "The Emperor's New Clothes." If someone says it's wonderful that we have three modern dance choreographers coming in to do works for us, ask why is it wonderful? Why don't they work in modern dance and revitalize that genre before it gets mushed in the blender? Why not do an exciting, vibrant, young proudly contemporary dance company?

Any other thoughts? (Sorry for once again writing a book.)

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Originally posted by Leigh Witchel:

Some people come to see the dance, but just as many come to see also the lighting

There's another reason to come?

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