7 Dance Performances to See in NYC This Weekend
Our guide to dance performances happening this weekend and in the week ahead.
ALVIN AILEY AMERICAN DANCE THEATER at City Center (through Dec 30). This beloved company, under the artistic direction of Robert Battle, digs into its 60th anniversary season with the anticipated premiere of Rennie Harris’s “Lazarus,” a two-act production created in homage to Ailey on Friday. And the unveiling of another new work is scheduled for Tuesday: This time, it’s Ronald K. Brown’s “The Call,” featuring the choreographer’s spiritual blend of modern and African dance. The season also spotlights the company premiere of Wayne McGregor’s “Kairos,” a new production of Battle’s “Juba” and plenty of Ailey classics.
‘GEORGE BALANCHINE’S THE NUTCRACKER’ at the David H. Koch Theater (through Dec. 30). New York City Ballet continues performances of its acclaimed 1954 production that would melt the Scroogiest of hearts. The elaborate staging includes a one-ton Christmas tree that grows from a 12 feet to 41 feet and an 85-pound, nine-feet wide Mother Ginger. The ballet highlights dozens of talented and adorable children from the School of American Ballet, but the star of the show isn’t just one dancer but a bevy of Snowflakes. Their waltz — full of beauty and daring — will take your breath away.
DANCES PATRELLE at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College (Dec. 6, 7 p.m.; through Dec. 9). This troupe celebrates the 23rd anniversary of Francis Patrelle’s “The Yorkville Nutcracker,” which is set in New York City in 1895. Along the way, dancers visit a holiday party at Gracie Mansion, perform in the Crystal Palace at the New York Botanical Garden and skate in Central Park. As always, guest artists appear with the company, and this year’s Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier are Abi Stafford and Ask la Cour, both principals with New York City Ballet.
DORRANCE DANCE at BAM Fisher (Dec. 5-6, 7:30 p.m.; through Dec. 8). In “Elemental,” the ebullient and talented tap choreographer Michelle Dorrance teams up with Nicholas Van Young — a dancer, musician and the associate artistic director of the company — to create a site-specific work that transforms an intimate space into a sonic landscape. The work includes 13 performers and live music by the pianist Donovan Dorrance, the bassist Gregory Richardson and the vocalist Aaron Marcellus, “Elemental” promises to weave a riveting tapestry of music and dance.
NEIL GREENBERG at the Chocolate Factory (Dec. 5-6, 8 p.m.; through Dec. 15). If the title of Greenberg’s latest work seems like something of a rallying cry, go with it: “To the Things Themselves!” is meant to encourage the viewer not to come at this performance lightly, but to experience it, with as much nuance as possible, in the moment. Aptly, the audience sits in the round. Here, Greenberg collaborates with the composer James Lo and will be joined by a fine cast: Michael Ingle, Kyli Kleven and Omagbitse Omagbemi. The costumes are by Paige Martin, who danced with Greenberg for 15 years, in collaboration with Parker Lutz.
DAVID ROUSSÈVE/REALITY at the BAM Harvey Theater (Dec. 5-8, 7:30 p.m.). In his latest dance-theater work, “Halfway to Dawn,” Roussève pays tribute to the musician Billy Strayhorn with a mix of dance, sound, projected text and video. A piece in two acts, the first part takes place in a 1950s jazz club, and the second in a dreamscape. While exploring aspects of fame and authorship, the choreographer touches on many aspects of the composer’s life, including his work as a collaborator to Duke Ellington, his life as a gay African-American man living in Harlem and his strong support of Martin Luther King, Jr.
SKELETON ARCHITECTURE at Danspace Project (Dec. 6, 6-9 p.m.; through Dec. 8). For the return of this collective — made up of black women and gender nonconforming artists — Danspace Project hosts two evenings of workshops (Dec. 6-7) and a performance (Dec. 8). Skeleton Architecture began in 2016 when Eva Yaa Asantewaa assembled a number of performers for an evening she curated in conjunction with “Lost & Found,” Danspace’s platform examining the impact of AIDS on generations of artists. The collective features a glittering array of dance artists, including Davalois Fearon, Marjani Forté-Saunders, Jasmine Hearn, Nia Love, Paloma McGregor, Charmaine Warren, Edisa Weeks and Marýa Wethers.
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