NY Times: Best Dance of 2019
By Gia Kourlas, Siobhan Burke, and Brian Seibert
Dance Was Everywhere
Where have I seen dance in 2019? Basically, everywhere: from Broadway to bar basements to parks to proscenium stages, and in films and on television. That has been overwhelming in the best sense. Here, in no particular order, is a selection of what stood out.
Ayodele Casel + Arturo O’Farrill
The effervescent Ms. Casel has been honing her expertise in tap dance since the 1990s. Her collaboration with the pianist and composer Mr. O’Farrill at the Joyce Theater was too long in coming — she should have been commissioned years earlier — but it was a spectacular display of technique and heart. Ms. Casel danced with the skill and spirit she is known for, but she also paid homage to the female tap dancers who came before her. She’s extraordinary.
With her feline beauty, and the undulating flow and power of her dancing, this self-assured young member of New York City Ballet is just starting out. This fall, she made her debut as the tall girl in George Balanchine’s “Rubies,” and it was a spectacular performance, though hardly a surprise to those who saw her dance in “Scotch Symphony” at the School of American Ballet Workshop performances in 2017. At City Ballet, Ms. Nadon is not alone in talent, but she’s an important part of the company’s future.
In Twyla Tharp’s magnificent triple bill at American Ballet Theater last spring, the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House shook off its cobwebs. Along with “The Brahms-Haydn Variations” — it’s hard to forget Stephanie Williams’s gorgeous arms — and the rousing closer, “In the Upper Room,” the program featured the revival of “Deuce Coupe.” That 1973 work by Ms. Tharp, whose mix of classical and modern dance has led it to be considered the first crossover ballet, was resurrected for the current generation, who danced it with daring and aplomb, making it a hit all over again.
Read the full article in The New York Times.
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