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The Greatest Living Choreographer


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#16 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 03 March 2002 - 12:54 AM

This should be taken into a thread of its own but I'm going to leave it here first to see if anyone bites wink.gif . I think the recent divided reaction among the critics in London to Tudor's The Leaves are Fading may be an example of what we're talking about here. In that work we saw an abstracted, "Americanized" and formalist Tudor. I'm not saying he had been Balanchine-ized, but what I saw that I loved in Leaves was its form, and all the more because it was as structured in its own way, yet completely unlike Balanchine. However, that woman in the dress slowly meandering across the stage at the beginning could set someone up to expect an entirely different ballet than the one they got.

As interestingly, could one do Leaves as either a formalist or an expressionist work? Is the Leaves of either Royal Ballet (the English or the Danes) a ballet with different priorities than the one danced in the US?

#17 Calliope

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 08:17 AM

This past week I've read (so far) 2 pieces where a choreographer (Cunningham and Paul Taylor) have been referred to as "the greatest living choreographer".
Who would you say is?

#18 Calliope

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Posted 03 March 2002 - 06:19 AM

I really meant to ask (not between Taylor and Cunningham necessarily) who you thought the greatest living choreographer is.

#19 julip

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 10:06 PM

While I enjoy the works of Taylor more...I have to vote for Cunningham as the greatest between the two. Cunningham, IMO has done alot more to progress the art of choreography than Taylor did.

#20 julip

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Posted 04 March 2002 - 06:35 PM

Dirac (or anyone else),
I was wondering if you could tell me why you think Grigorovich is a great choreographer. Everything that I have seen by him, with the exception of one male solo in Spartacus, I have not been impressed with at all. It all seems rather unimaginative and well, boring. I have heard alot of people say they consider him a great choreographer, but I fail to see why. Maybe I'm missing something. Thanks in advance for replies.

#21 Richard Jones

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Posted 06 March 2002 - 05:27 PM

Don't forget that there are those of us in Europe who love Balanchine (and don't see enough of his work!).

One thing that seems to bind together these great choreographers, whatever discipline they come from, is their musicality. On that note, I'd like to know whether the work of Richard Alston is known in the USA. How is it received? (I'm not proposing him for a greatest choreographer spot - in fact, since the death of both Balanchine and Robbins it's hard to see who matches up in the sheer range of work compared with these giants).

[ March 06, 2002, 05:32 PM: Message edited by: Richard Jones ]

#22 rg

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 10:32 PM

cezanne and MANET???
to me, perhaps MONET would be a fair for-arguments-sake comparison, but i'm afraid where MANET is concerned i feel rather similar lincoln kirstein: (and i'll vaguely paraphrase: 'manet was a bad painter!')
to mine eyes both cezanne and monet were GREAT painters.
as to pitting cunningham against taylor, the joust holds no interest for me. see each charging off in a different/opposite direction.

#23 Farrell Fan

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Posted 02 March 2002 - 03:30 PM

I agree that most Americans behave as though Bejart and Petit don't exist. In fact I mentioned the former to someone during an intermission at NYCB a couple of weeks ago, and though knowledgeable about ballet, he expressed surprise that Bejart was still alive. I wish I'd seen more of his work. I saw a little more of Petit's and agree with Alexandra's assessment. So that leaves Cunningham and Taylor, and because he's more accessible, I vote for Taylor.

#24 Farrell Fan

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Posted 04 March 2002 - 09:34 AM

At the Paul Taylor performance last night I was seated next to a couple, no longer young, studying their programs prior to the start. I overheard the following dialogue:

She: "Newsweek calls him the world's greatest living choreographer."
He: "What about Merce Cunningham?"
She: "I can't STAND Merce Cunningham."
He: "What about Mark Morris? And that woman who does the Broadway shows?"
She: (reading again) "The dance world regards him as a living legend."
He: "THAT I agree with."

Just thought I'd mention it.


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