Long-lasting launch pad

By MARCIA B. SIEGEL  |  April 21, 2009

In addition to chamber works on pointe by two alumnae (Claudia Shreier and Larissa Koch), the program included Opalescent, a dance for five women in a sort of early-modern-cum-Graham style choreographed by Dance Program director Elizabeth Bergmann. The gently skimming dance patterns were woven into muted chiming and drum rhythms — composed in collaboration with Bergmann by Jody Diamond — for a Javanese-style gamelan built by the American avant-garde composer Lou Harrison. This ensemble of instruments, on loan from Diamond to Harvard's music department, has five sets of tuned bowls and metallophones, drums, violin, and a great gong that hangs in its own frame and is struck with a soft mallet to mark the long intervals of the music.

A certain subdued exoticism about this piece reminded me that the early Ballets Russes shocked and subverted the dance stage at the same time as the American revolutionaries Ruth St. Denis and Isadora Duncan.

The celebrations continue with Boston Ballet's "Diaghilev Centennial" program (May 14-17) and a week of events surrounding a three-day conference at Boston University (May 18-23; www.ballets-russes.com).

< prev  1  |  2  |  3  | 
  Topics: Dance , Entertainment, Harvard University, Serge Diaghilev's Ballets,  More more >
| More


Most Popular
ARTICLES BY MARCIA B. SIEGEL
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   MARK MORRIS'S SOCRATES, THE MUIR, AND FESTIVAL DANCE  |  May 22, 2012
    Erik Satie called his vocal work Socrate a "symphonic drama," though it's anything but dramatic in a theatrical sense — or symphonic, either.
  •   JOFFREY BALLET GETS ITS DUE  |  May 08, 2012
    New York has two great ballet companies, New York City Ballet and American Ballet Theater. Any other ballet troupe that wants to put down roots there has to develop a personality that's distinct from those two.
  •   THE BOSTON BALLET’S DON QUIXOTE  |  May 01, 2012
    In the long string of ballet productions extracted from Miguel de Cervantes's novel Don Quixote, the delusional Don has become a minor character, charging into situations where he shouldn't go and causing trouble instead of good works.
  •   THE TREY MCINTYRE PROJECT IGNITES THE ICA  |  March 21, 2012
    When Trey McIntyre found a base for his infant company in Boise, Idaho, four years ago, eyebrows lifted in the dance world.
  •   BALLET HISPANICO FALLS SHORT  |  March 13, 2012
    All three dances presented by Ballet Hispanico at the Cutler Majestic last weekend depended heavily on costume effects to convey their messages.

 See all articles by: MARCIA B. SIEGEL