This program had interesting connections among three very different works. Tudor taught for many years at the Juilliard School, where Conservatory director of dance Yasuko Tokunaga studied with him and with José Limón, whose Dances for Isadora was revived. Fellow Juilliard alum Michael Uthoff created Galleria, a lively and demanding classical ballet piece, for the Conservatory students. Limón’s flamboyant work, choreographed in 1971, contrasts with Tudor’s study in restraint. Both draw on a deep humanistic tendency in 20th-century dance.
A tribute to the mother of modern dance, Dances offers five solos, each evoking a different stage of Isadora Duncan’s life. The dance gave the students a crack at full-out dancing interpretations, and they seized the opportunity. Ae-Soon Kim was breathtaking as the ecstatic young Isadora (Primavera), and the others gave a moving account: Minah Oh (Maenad), Shelley Franklin (Niobe), Laurence Jacques (La Patrie), and Tiffany Spearman (Scarf Dance). Conservatory faculty member Jennifer Scanlon directed the revival; she danced in the original cast.
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