December 3, 1990 |
From the 1983 Kennedy Center Honors presented by President Reagan to the 1989 National Medal of Arts presented by President Bush, Katherine Dunham is no stranger to awards. France, Brazil, Haiti and UNESCO have paid homage to both her artistry as a dancer-choreographer and her influence as a pioneer artist of color--and she even holds the Albert Schweitzer Award for her humanitarian achievements.
September 10, 1996 |
Major ballet choreographers work in Broadway musicals so seldom that it's fascinating to watch two of them tackle Rodgers and Hammerstein's groundbreaking "Carousel"--one in an acclaimed new production opening tonight at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, the other in a vintage film revived on television. If Agnes de Mille's "Oklahoma!"
July 28, 1993 |
To heavy percussive blasts and the wailing of high-pitched voices, a man and a woman square off in severe martial-arts poses. Two figures stand behind each adversary, mirroring theirangular stances. Suddenly the whole group explodes in effortful, sharp-edged aggressive movements, executed with symmetrical, clocklike regularity . . . Eight Ballet Pacifica dancers are busy rehearsing a new piece by Kathryn Posin, being created for the "Pacifica Choreographic Project '93."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 30, 2000 |
Until now, St. Joseph Ballet founder Beth Burns has created all the works for the Santa Ana-based youth company. But the troupe has come to a point at which it can reach out beyond her vision, she says. "It's vital that there be more than one choreographic voice," Burns said in a recent phone interview from her office. "Having a different choreographic vision challenges our students to grow."
March 10, 1991 |
Choreographers have rarely spent their creative energies exploring the open-ended question of religious faith. The subject, it seems, has never been particularly in vogue. Yet, Bill T. Jones, in his newest work, "The Last Supper at Uncle Tom's Cabin/The Promised Land," does exactly that. The three-hour, post-modern spectacle also looks at other big subjects such as freedom and racial anger. Jones has reason to ponder the old question.
September 22, 2002 |
Yuri Possokhov is a heartthrob San Francisco Ballet principal dancer who, at 38, is beginning to think of choreography as a way of extending his career. His "Damned," which the company will dance this week at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, is only his second ballet. But at least in his current hometown, it was called "the dance event of the season."
April 25, 1993 |
When choreographer Donald Byrd wanted audiences to face up to this country's history of racism and prejudice, he didn't pull any punches. He created a work he calls "The Minstrel Show: Acts for Coons, Jigaboos and Jungle Bunnies." An African-American himself, he even made the African-American dancers in his company put on blackface, and he invited members of the audience to come on stage to tell the latest racist jokes they'd heard.
November 24, 1991 |
Mark Morris recently wrapped up a month of making new works and rehearsing repertory at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival here with a weekend of informal, fund-raising performances for friends of the company, no reviews allowed. Morris' seat was reserved by four cans of Foster's Lager placed under one of the folding chairs, and yes, he drank them. But he didn't pop the tops while people were dancing. After all, Morris is 35.
April 21, 1991 |
"Look, if an engine strains, it's not a very good engine," Erick Hawkins said. "When one has complete mastery, things appear to be effortless." Hawkins knows a bit about mastery: The 82-year-old choreographer has been in the world of dance for the equivalent of three generations and has been associated with some of its creative giants.