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About miliosr

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  • Birthday 06/16/1967

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  1. miliosr

    Paul Taylor names successor

    Limon did this under Carla Maxwell and, I have to say, the old dances worked a whole lot better in the context of the repertory than the new commissions did. During Maxwell's directorship, I was able to see works from the modern dance canon by Jiri Kylian, Lar Lubovitch, Donald McKayle and Anna Sokolow. (Maxwell also programmed the solos of Daniel Nagrin.)
  2. miliosr

    Limon Dance Company

    For the 2017-18 season, Colin Connor commissioned three short duets from Adam Barruch, Rosie Herrera and Yin Yue. I saw the Herrera duet, Querida Herida, as part of Program A. Opening up the second half of the program and set to pop songs by Los Javaloyas and Jose Feliciano, Querida Herida starts with Brenna Monroe-Cook and Jacqueline Bulnes embracing tightly in a sphere of light. My first thought was that Herrera might try to explore how much dance is possible within a highly limited space. But the dancers quickly part and the action shifts. Wearing long black dresses with red zippers, Monroe-Cook and Bulnes start unzipping the zippers to reveal spangly fabric (beneath Monroe-Cook's dress) and nude underwear (beneath Bulnes' dress). After this mildly diverting interlude, Monroe-Cook and Bulnes exit stage left and two red elastic strips (simulating the red zippers) appear at the back of the stage. Angela Falk appears as "the zipper" and moves back-and-forth as if opening and closing the zipper. (In reality, it's a device to kill time while Monroe-Cook and Bulnes are making a costume change offstage.) Once the "zipper" inanity comes to a merciful close, Monroe Cook and Bulnes return and the dance takes a more serious turn as the two women engage in a power contest of sorts. Bulnes emerges as the victor and, after 10 minutes, the dance concludes. All I can say about this piece is that it should have been killed during its out-of-town tryout. Problem one is that it didn't know what it wanted to be. The three different sections didn't cohere at all. Problem two is that the middle "zipper" section was ridiculous and served no purpose other than to cover for a costume change. The third, final and most serious problem is that Querida Herida just looks ridiculous in the context of the rest of the repertory. Next to the heavy duty Limon pieces, Querida Herida is a trifle (and a poorly constructed trifle at that.) The comparison is all the more unflattering because Limon's dances are models of composition and structure. The one thing of note about Querida Herida is that designer Bradon McDonald did the costumes (as he did for the dances by the other two choreographers.) Before he became a member of the Mark Morris troupe and long before he became a Project Runway contestant, McDonald was a late-90s member of the Limon company. So, nice to see that he still has an association with the company. Too bad his costumes couldn't have been in service to a better dance. Up next: Missa Brevis
  3. miliosr

    Limon Dance Company

    There was a brief pause between The Unsung and the next work on the program, Colin Connor's The Body Is a House Without Walls. Billed as a "professional" premiere (which I took to mean that Connor had staged it originally at the college level when he was a professor of dance), The Body Is a House Without Walls is a vehicle for six women in the Limon company. It begins with Brenna Monroe-Cook lying still in a red dress. The other five women (in white) gather around her and one of them (Logan Frances Krueger) cuts off the red dress with a pair of scissors to reveal Monroe-Cook also wearing white. At first, I thought that the dance was heading to the same territory explored by Yoko Ono in Cut Piece. Instead, it evolves into a lyrical work involving the six women "welcoming" Monroe-Cook into some kind of after life. There are numerous duets between the women and there are even female-female lifts. (This represents an evolution in the Limon Company aesthetic which often had male-male duets (i.e. Between Limon and Lucas Hoving) but was much sparser in terms of female-female duets.) Having brought Monroe-Cook into this afterlife, the dance then concludes. The best thing The Body Is a House Without Walls has going for it is its length. It is no longer than 10 minutes and does not betray its theme by overstaying its welcome. (Colin Connor may have remembered Doris Humphrey's admonishment: "All dances are too long.") The other thing it has going for it is that it is steeped in the Limon technique. Connor danced with the company in decades past and so he has a close familiarity with the technique. This helps to create a technical unity between The Body is a House Without Walls and The Unsung even though they are thematically different. The weakness of The Body Is a House Without Walls is that it seems slight coming after the high gear The Unsung. (This is the same problem that Susanne Linke's all-female Extreme Beauty had back in 2004 when it had to follow The Unsung.) Still, Colin Connor fills a need with this piece by showing that the Limon Company has a continuing commitment to programming new work, even though that work appears washed out next to the heroic Limon style. The Body Is a House Without Walls led into an intermission. More to come on the remainder of the program . . .
  4. miliosr

    Limon Dance Company

    I attended Program A of the Limon Dance Company's recent week of performances at the Joyce, which consisted of Jose Limon's Missa Brevis and The Unsung as well as Artistic Director Colin Connor's The Body Is a House Without Walls and Rosie Herrera's Querida Herida. Since the two week 70th anniversary celebration in 2015, Colin Connor has replaced Carla Maxwell as AD and the company has seen major turnover in its ranks. Of the current 14 company members, only 4 participated in the 2015 festival. So I was curious to see what this new iteration of the company would look like under Connor's direction. The first piece on Program A was Limon's The Unsung from 1970. This was Limon's tribute to legendary Native American chieftains. One of its most striking aspects is the absence of music. There is a score of sorts, though, provided courtesy of the dancers rhythmic footfalls and audible breathing. Despite its theme, The Unsung has no explicit storyline. Instead, it consists of an opening group section followed by seven linked solos in which the men of the company embody 7 different chieftains. Limon intended The Unsung to be a tribute. But he also wanted to create a showcase for the extraordinary group of male dancers that had gathered around him in the late-60s. It remains true to both of those goals in 2018. The men of Limon, both in the opening group section and in their individual solos, harness a tremendous power which carries the work forward without a moment's flagging. Two things struck me about The Unsung since the last time I saw it. FIrst, there is ample use of non-dance locomotion (i.e. Walking), which shows that Limon was more receptive to late-60s trends in modern dance than he is often given credit for. Second, Limon, who has no reputation for being interested in the "air," makes striking use of it here, especially in the 'Tecumseh' variation with Jesse Obremski. I haven't seen The Unsung since the very first time I saw a Limon Dance Company program in 2004 (!) I thought it was a masterwork then and, seeing the latest iteration of the company perform it last week, I remain convinced that it remains a masterwork. Colin Connor's staging reveals that the Limon men have lost none of the work's power even though many of them were performing it for the first time. More to come . . .
  5. I've followed Florimond Lorieux's Instagram feed since he decamped from the Paris Opera Ballet to the Boston Ballet. My general takeway from his postings has been that he has had some 'up' moments in Boston and some 'down' moments there. Curiously, some of his most enthusiastic postings about life in the US were were in regard to his visits to NYC (i.e. taking class with Willy Burman). That being said, his return to POB may be nothing more than homesickness for Paris and sensing a bit of opportunity within the current ranks of male dancers.
  6. miliosr

    NEA grants to dance - May 2018

    American Repertory Ballet performed Gerald Arpino's Sea Shadows in April: https://www.broadwayworld.com/new-jersey/article/American-Repertory-Ballet-Makes-A-Splash-With-Gerald-Arpinos-SEA-SHADOW-To-Be-Performed-At-McCarter-Theatre-20180413 More companies performing Arpino ballets in 2018: http://www.arpinofoundation.org/news-performances.html
  7. miliosr

    2018 Met Season

    He was wearing a blue shirt when I saw him this morning . . .
  8. miliosr

    2018 Met Season

    I will say that he's much more handsome up close than he is in photos. And he's the most turned-out ballet dancer I've ever seen in my life.
  9. miliosr

    2018 Met Season

    That's me -- citizen paparazzo (minus the camera). Empty handed.
  10. miliosr

    2018 Met Season

    Writing this as I sit on the train to leave Penn Station . . . I've been in New York the past three days to see the Limon company at the Joyce. As I walking back from breakfast this morning around 8:30AM, who should come charging out of his residence right in front of me and depart in a waiting car? David Hallberg. Here's the kicker: One of the building's superintendents was working outside and called out to him, "Flying off to the wild blue yonder again?" Hallberg shot him a wry look before the car sped away. Make of it what you will. You know you love me . . . XOXO . . . Gossip Girl!!!
  11. miliosr

    Great Masters of Dance

    Carrie Seidman's review in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune contains a photo of the wigs: http://www.heraldtribune.com/news/20180428/dance-review-farewell-to-season---and-two-beloved-dancers The wigs really do look ridiculous. As to the question of, "Can there really be that many dancers of a certain age in search of a vehicle?," the answer would be 'Yes'. That's why (at least in part) John Cranko's Onegin, Kenneth MacMillan's Manon and John Neumeier's La Dame au camelias are so popular with dancers "of a certain age."
  12. miliosr

    Great Masters of Dance

    In her original review of The Leaves Are Fading (at the time of its premiere), Arlene Croce was favorable towards it but thought that it was too long. Revisiting the piece in the mid-80s, Croce wrote that, "he [Antony Tudor] had misjudged the audience's ability to concentrate on intricacies of partnering and other small differences in so many consecutive or simultaneous pas de deux."
  13. miliosr

    Boston Ballet 2018-19 season

    My understanding is that the dancers at the Opera are guaranteed a sabbatical year. Further leave after one year may be at the discretion of the director (as appears to have happened here.)
  14. Florimond Lorieux has announced on his Instagram feed that he's returning to the Paris Opera Ballet after two years as a soloist at Boston Ballet. He can't be too worried about the malaise!
  15. miliosr

    Boston Ballet 2018-19 season

    Florimond Lorieux has announced on his Instagram feed that he's returning to the Paris Opera Ballet after two years with Boston Ballet.