Rachel Straus - Dance Writer

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Juilliard Dance

 
Published: November 8, 2016
Category: review

Mark Morris Offers Gems of India, and Brooklyn Too

By Rachel Straus for MusicalAmerica.com November 8, 2016 As the curator of the White Lights Festival’s “Sounds of India” series, choreographer Mark Morris brought his company to the Gerald W. Lynch Theater, in a gem-like program that illuminated his own, personal relationship with India. In 1981, Morris toured that country as a performer with Laura []

Published: July 26, 2012
Category: profile

Jessica Lang Dance at Jacob's Pillow

by Rachel Straus “A letter always seemed to me like immortality because it is the mind alone without corporeal friend.” ~Emily Dickinson In 2002 Jessica Lang opened a mysterious letter that was discovered in the office of Benjamin Harkarvy, the recently deceased artistic director of The Juilliard School’s dance division. The letter was five years []

Published: June 25, 2012
Category: review

Precision vs. Passion in Romeo and Juliet

By Rachel Straus

BERLIN — John Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet moves from strength to strength, which is why it has been performed continuously since its world premiere in 1962. Arguably the finest ballet version of the Bard’s tale, it was recently performed by Staatsballett Berlin before a packed house at the Deutsche Oper Berlin on June []

Published: June 20, 2012
Category: review

Dido & Aeneas, a "Choreographic Opera"

By Rachel Straus

BERLIN — The story of Dido & Aeneas has long been popular among contemporary choreographers. In 1989, Mark Morris created his Dido and Aeneas to Purcell’s late 17th-century opera. In 1999, Pina Bausch’s O Dido employed nothing of the opera score, but incorporated the myth’s water imagery. Choreographer Sasha Waltz calls []

Published: March 9, 2012
Category: review

Mark Morris Turns to Beethoven, Again

By Rachel Straus

NEW YORK — Mark Morris has turned to Beethoven for the fifth time with his “A Choral Fantasy,” which had its premiere last week at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. (I saw it March 2.) Danced to a (live) performance of the work of the same name, it is a playful, ironic and []

Published: December 1, 2011
Category: history

Isadora Duncan: Mother of modern dance

Isadora Duncan

By Rachel Straus

The moment when Isadora Duncan throws her head back in ecstasy as she dances at the Theatre of Dionysus in Greece (preserved in the 1903 photograph above) captures Duncan’s archetypal performance qualities: supple, improvisatory, transcendent. Arguably the most important American-born dance artist of the early 20th century, Duncan forged her style against []

Published: November 7, 2011
Category: review

The Sumptuous Gifts of Fall for Dance 2011

By Rachel Straus NEW YORK — The Fall for Dance Festival is a two-week terpsichorean bonanza. It harkens back to vaudeville’s glory days, with its diverse array of talent and cheap seats. Now in its eighth year, the festival isn’t flagging (like the economy) or sputtering into dismal repetition (like certain unnamed politicians’ speeches). In []