Although dancing is associated worldwide with innovation, the number of dances that are worth seeing twice is diminishing as rapidly as the honeybee population. It’s as if choreographers under 30 were never themselves members of paying audiences. And so it has been up to the dancers to keep outstanding choreography going.
This year, Suki Schorer’s painstakingly researched and rehearsed production of “The Four Temperaments” by George Balanchine for the School of American Ballet Workshop was a gift to the world – and a real tribute to Lincoln Kirstein, whose birth centenary is being celebrated this year. The Barnard College production of Twyla Tharp’s early suite “Eight Jelly Rolls,” again painstakingly researched and reconstructed by former Tharp member Katie Glasner, was another gift from the Muse, as was Yuriko Kikuchi’s formidable production, for the Ailey school, of Martha Graham’s “Steps in the Street,” with an expanded cast. Bill T. Jones’ choreography for the Broadway musical “Spring Awakening” was powerful because, unusually for Jones, it was tightly disciplined as well as entirely appropriate to its subject.
In this season of Kyra Nichols’ retirement from the New York City ...