Fall for Dance: Program One: NY City Center 1 October 2015

Autumn means it’s time for Fall for Dance, the inexpensive way to see many types of dance. There are five different programs and I’ll be seeing all five this year.

The Miami City Ballet performed Allegro Brillante, which could be a primer for ballet. There is every move you can think of that’s part of Western classical ballet. Choreographed by George Balanchine to music by Tchaikovsky (Third Piano Concerto, Op. 75 – Unfinished), this ballet had its premiere at New York City Center on 1 March 1956. Costumes are by Karinska and lighting by John Hall. Patricia Delgado’s steps were so delicate as to be unreal. It seemed like she was barely touching the floor. I loved watching Renan Cerdeiro spin her around, whether he did it alone or with another of the male dancers. The other dancers were Leigh-Ann Esty, Ashley Knox, Jennifer Lauren, Zoe Zien, Michael Sean Breeden, Andrei Chagas, Bradley Dunlap, and Damian Zamorano.

Doug Elkins Choreography, Etc. performed Hapless Bizarre, which focused on a hapless clown, who first couldn’t get hold of a hat on the floor and then had to fight for that hat and another hat while other dancers played keepaway with it. Later he tried to hook up with various dancers but was rebuffed. The women were dressed in very colorful jumpsuits and the men had colorful shirts or pants. The clown was originally dressed plainly in black and white but then changed to a colorful shirt. Choreography is by Doug Elkins, original music by Justin Levine and Matt Stine, and costumes by Oana Botez. Setting up each scenario was spoken word advice on how to be more popular. The dancers were Mark Gindick, Deborah Lohse, Cori Marquis, Kyle Marshall, Donnell Oakely, and John Sorenson-Jolink.

L.A. Dance Project performed Murder Ballades, which takes its inspiration from the old American folk songs. Since I love a good murder ballad I was disappointed that there wasn’t any lyrics sung to Bryce Dessner’s original music. Sterling Ruby had created a backdrop that looked like old wood cuttings. Choreography and costumes were by Justin Peck. The dancers wore shorts or tights with regular shirts. The dancers were very athletic and there were supposed to be dark undertones that slipped by me. This piece did receive a big crowd response. Dancers were Stephanie Amurao, Anthony Bryant, Aaron Carr, Julia Eichten, Morgan Lugo, Rachelle, Rafailedes.

Che Malambo performed Che Malambo. This Argentinian group received an immediate positive response from the audience with the crowd yelling and clapping throughout the performance. Dressed all in black, everyone in the troupe was banging a drum and stomping his feet. Then one drummer remained while the dancers came out, first one at a time and then several at a time, stomping and dancing – using all parts of their shoes. It was like flamenco on steroids. While the entire company danced, one dancer stomped and danced barefoot. The drummer sang a couple of songs and then one dancer came out and performed with gaucho balls (boleadoras). Just when we thought it couldn’t get any better, the rest of the company came out and they spun the boleadoras in unison. Choreography is by Gilles Brinas and the dancers are Nicolas Correa, Claudio Diaz, Miguel Flores, Federico Gareis, Nahuel Gareis, Walter Kochanowski, Facundo Lencina, Exequiel Maya, Maximiliano Medina, Fernando Monaco, Julio Moreno, Esteban Nieva, Alberto Ruiz, and Pablo Touron.

By Carene Lydia Lopez