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NY City Center-The Balanchine Years-fall 2018

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This sounds very exciting -- I'll be curious to see what the actual programming is.

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Posted (edited)

From the description "will present ballets both made at City Center and popular works performed as part of New York City Ballet’s regular seasons at our historic theater from 1948 – 1964." That means ballets will be limited to pre-1965, Not a complaint, just so we can dream of the fantasy programs within this perimeter.

ABT will compete with itself in the fall season.

Edited by mussel

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This would have been an ideal showcase for The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, with their reconstructions of lesser-known ballets from Balanchine’s City Center years, e.g., Gounod Symphony, Pas de Dix, Ragtime, Meditation. Alas, TSFB is no more.

Edited by CharlieH

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Will Square Dance be presented in the City Center version with on-stage caller and hillbilly band? The Joffrey used to dance that version.

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I prefer the hybrid version where the caller only calls the Wilde solo.  This version may only be in my head, but I don't care.

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One thing to keep in mind is that the City Center stage is smaller than some, e.g. the one at the former New York State Theater.  I don't have accurate dimensions handy, but performing ballets made to be performed there makes sense to me from that angle. 

I remember seeing the Joffrey perform the original version of Square Dance several times in the City Center in the '70s.  I found that the caller's voice, amplified as it was, made it harder to follow the Corelli and Vivaldi numbers Balanchine had selected (the string playing was on a higher, more conventional concert-style level than "hill-billy" might imply), and so I tried an experiment:  I put in some earplugs, and they cut down the amplified sound more than the live acoustical sound of the violins, and I was happy.

My own preference is for the later version of Square Dance, not only because I can hear the music better and see the dancing better in the new costumes (with the musicians in the pit, too), but especially for the majestic new male solo, especially when it was danced by the dancer who inspired it, Bart Cook.

That week in the '70s exemplified Robert Joffrey's interests in historic revivals as well as an already accomplished newcomer.  If I remember correctly, Petrushka was also on the program, which was rounded out by, again IIRC, a remarkable piece of work called As Time Goes By, choreographed by someone with the taking name of Twyla Tharp.   

Edited by Jack Reed

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This is good news.  We need to see Balanchine danced by many different companies rooted in different traditions. 

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