First up was Balanchine's "Theme and Variations" - choreographed originally in 1947, this ballet is intended "to evoke that great period in classical dancing when Russian ballet flourished with the aid of Tchaikovsky's music" (quote by Balanchine). Sounds perfect to me. I love the Russian style of ballet and I love Tchaikovsky, so "Theme and Variations" is the perfect marriage of the two. From my subscription seat up in the baloncy, I adored seeing the intricate patterns of the choreography.
|photo credit: Marty Sohl|
After a brief pause, the next piece was also choreographed by George Balanchine - "Duo Concertant," set to music by Stravinsky. This piece features a live pianist and solo violinist on stage with two dancers listening and reacting to the music. The dancers stood by the piano and listened to the entire first movement, then would go back and forth between dancing and listening throughout the rest of the piece. The last section was done in almost total darkness, with just a couple of shafts of light that the dancers moved in and out of. The effect was lovely.
The two dancers, Misty Copeland and Eric Tamm, were beautifully matched and had a lovely, open, easy rapport. The piece was just lovely, not showy, but perfectly in tune with the music and the musicians. Both dancers were effortlessly light on their feet. I would definitely love to see this piece again, especially since I think the spot operator in that last section got a few of the cues mixed up. It didn't ruin anything, but it did dull the effect of the ending, I think. Ah well.
|photo credit: Fabrizio Ferri|