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Program 5: Celebrating Jerome Robbins-Reviews Discussion

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Rachel Howard's review of the Robbins Program:

The Dreamer
San Francisco Ballet pays tribute to Jerome Robbins
https://www.fjordreview.com/san-francisco-ballet-jerome-robbins/

[How is this for a wonderful opening?]
'I can’t remember the first time I saw “Swan Lake” or “Serenade,” but I will never forget the first time I saw Jerome Robbins’s “Dances at a Gathering.” I was twenty-six and had just flown from California to New York City for the first time in my life. Equally frightening: I had just received a marriage proposal from the man I’d begged, for years, to marry me—and suddenly I wasn’t sure whether I should marry him. I sat smack in the middle of the orchestra section for a New York City Ballet matinee and up went the curtain and out came the man in brown (Damian Woetzel, I was very lucky in my casting). He touched the ground and strolled with his head tilting as though to take us back in his memory. And then the stage was filled with his friends, dancing for one another like real people with distinct personalities, playing games like lambs, pausing in moments of intimacy as though shocked by the seriousness of love.'

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, pherank said:

Rachel Howard's review of the Robbins Program:

The Dreamer
San Francisco Ballet pays tribute to Jerome Robbins
https://www.fjordreview.com/san-francisco-ballet-jerome-robbins/

[How is this for a wonderful opening?]
'I can’t remember the first time I saw “Swan Lake” or “Serenade,” but I will never forget the first time I saw Jerome Robbins’s “Dances at a Gathering.” I was twenty-six and had just flown from California to New York City for the first time in my life. Equally frightening: I had just received a marriage proposal from the man I’d begged, for years, to marry me—and suddenly I wasn’t sure whether I should marry him. I sat smack in the middle of the orchestra section for a New York City Ballet matinee and up went the curtain and out came the man in brown (Damian Woetzel, I was very lucky in my casting). He touched the ground and strolled with his head tilting as though to take us back in his memory. And then the stage was filled with his friends, dancing for one another like real people with distinct personalities, playing games like lambs, pausing in moments of intimacy as though shocked by the seriousness of love.'

I'm always interested in Howard's observations, but this is particularly fine! 

Thinking of it, many of the reviews I've read over the years about this work have been excellent -- there is something in really good dancing that brings out the best in writers.

Edited by sandik

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As per Helene, the link to Rachel Howard's nicely written review has been moved here:

http://balletalert.invisionzone.com/topic/43630-program-5-celebrating-jerome-robbins-reviews-discussion/

If you're looking for examples of engaging dance reviews, this one should be on the list.

Paul Parish's review in the Bay Area Reporter was ultra-favorable: "There has not been a more entertaining evening in the Opera House for years than last week's Jerome Robbins show danced by the San Francisco Ballet."

The point being, that even though Program 5 was basically overshadowed by all the press around the Unbound Festival and Sleeping Beauty, many audience members ended up thinking the Robbins program was as inspired in performance as anything SFB has done in recent years. Which is as it should be, given that Tomasson was a Robbins protégé of sorts.

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