Article on Stroman and Tharp in The New Republic
Posted 21 November 2002 - 04:23 PM
Posted 25 November 2002 - 02:22 PM
Posted 25 November 2002 - 03:25 PM
Her juxtaposition of the two choreographers was interesting to read. I have seen Contact, didn't want to see the new version of Oklahoma...
I also read the older article she wrote about the "crisis" in ballet - titled "Steps, Steps, Steps - in which, rather than skewering NYCB, as some might say she did in the NY Times earlier this year, Ms. Homans takes the ballerinas of ABT to task instead...after a history lesson. I don't know if this article was discussed earlier or not...I suppose I should go back in cyber time and take a look because I would think it must have roused some posts.
I'll be waiting to see if any others care to comment on this writer's views of Stroman's and Tharp's "history" and choreography.
Posted 25 November 2002 - 03:47 PM
Homans' "history lessons" are there because TNR is a general interest publication that specializes in politics and public policy -- not a readership that can be assumed to have a profound knowledge of dance. I do have to wonder about the contents of the lessons, sometimes. For example, she lumps Astaire, Kelly, Balanchine, and Jack Cole together as "interwar" Broadway choreographers, when the first two were performers who did their own dances and the third was a ballet choreographer who was doing work on Broadway strictly from hunger. Odd grouping. It also seemed a little funny to have Robbins departing Broadway in part because of the ascendancy of Bob Fosse, when I recall that Fosse had a standing invite from Robbins to do a piece for NYCB, and Fosse himself revered Robbins. Michael Bennett did groundbreaking work that doesn't even merit a mention. There's more, but I'll leave it there.
It's true, Billy Joel is not an obvious fit with the Vietnam War era.
Posted 26 November 2002 - 08:46 AM
Posted 26 November 2002 - 09:24 AM
Re the Billy Joel/Vietnam connection and his coming of age during that period of time... I hadn't thought about it from that point of view.
How old is Billy J.? I am on the "young" side of actually coming of age during Vietnam, although I marched against it locally, carrying a lighted candle down to the Quaker Meeting House in our town...not really having a decent knowledge of what the "conflict" was about...but when I think of that era, to me, the music that comes to mind is the music one hears in the movies "Coming Home," "The Deer Hunter" and, of course, "Apocalypse Now" because those were the songs that were playing at the time of the Vietnam war.
In thinking about it from your point of view, I suppose you are right that the music listened to by these young soldiers, as they came of age, may well have been more in keeping with Billy Joel's style of music...as opposed to the music they fought with.
Again, I'm looking forward to your review.
Posted 26 November 2002 - 10:16 AM
None of the above would necessarily prevent Tharp from making a good show from the material, of course, and the consensus seems to be that she has.
Posted 26 November 2002 - 01:54 PM
Haven't seen the show yet, but I have to admit I don't think of those songs as being Vietnam Era at all. I remember when they all came out - late 70s and early eighties (although Piano Man might have been earlier) and for me, they're written from the point of view of someone who knows how Saigon and Watergate were going to turn out.
Posted 26 November 2002 - 03:29 PM
Posted 26 November 2002 - 03:50 PM
Any further mentions of Cher will be summarily and severely punished. And it will only be worse for you if you mention Sonny Bono.
Halfbreed. . .that's all I ever hearrrrd. . .
(And the beat goes on!)
Posted 26 November 2002 - 04:15 PM
Looking forward to your review, Nanatchka.
Posted 02 December 2002 - 05:03 PM
I really can't comment as I'm not sure that I've really seen Ms. Tharp's work...though I must have, mustn't I? Ms. Jacobs certainly goes for the jugular.
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