EYE ON DANCE AT "SORRY I MISSED YOUR SHOW"
November 19, 2012
On Saturday October 27th, Celia Ipiotis & EYE ON DANCE returned to Gibney Dance
Center's "Sorry I Missed Your Show" in a free screening of a select EYE ON DANCE episode
with an intimate, and entertaining panel discussion following.
The episode took us back to the 1988 New York City Ballet's (NYCB) American Music Festival
- a festival celebrating choreographer-composer collaborations that has continued as an annual
event. Featuring NYCB principal dancer Lourdes Lopez, along with choreographer William
Forsythe and composer Charles Wuorinen, the historically significant dance talk show gave a glimpse of what this
collaborative creative process is like from each angle.
Lopez recalls her rehearsals with Forsythe, and his non-NYCB style that she found both
challenging and exciting. Wuorinen comments on working with different choreographers and
his preference of some direction and structure, rather than an open-ended task of creating a
new piece of music for dance. Forsythe thinks back to opening night performances and the
anxiety of watching it all come together and the feeling the music is suddenly much slower than
remembered. Most endearing is Forsythe's impromptu solo improvisation at the episode's end,
showing the need for strong coordination in his angular, off-balance, balletic style.
Curated by Celia Ipiotis (Creator/Producer of Eye on Dance and the Arts), the panel discussion
following the screening included former NYCB principal dancers Heléne Alexopoulos, Peter
Frame, and Jeffrey Edwards, along with William Forsythe himself. It was a special treat to have
Forsythe, currently Artistic Director of his Germany-based Forsythe Company, in town and in
attendance for this event.
The experience had by the dancers in working with Forsythe was clearly a lasting one. Each had
anecdotes about what it was like working with him in creating “Behind the China Dogs” (1988)
– having to spell their name with their bodies at the first rehearsal, the sexy costumes they wore,
how he gave each a Dr. Suess book at the process’ end. Furthermore, the discussion gave true
insight into Forsythe’s career path, and how much he enjoyed pushing the boundaries of what
ballet was at the time, which took him out of the brand-name companies that prevail in New
York, to Europe where he found greater artistic freedom.
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY -- Jennifer Thompson