Sunday, April 10, 2016

MGDC Celebrates 90 With Some Classics, Special Guests, New Pontus. And an App; At YAGP, Final Finals and Two Galas. In Brooklyn (BAM)!


is an eloquent celebration of the American pioneering spirit. First performed in 1944, "Appalachian Spring" is set to music by Aaron Copland.

What better way for the company founded by the grande dame of modern dance, Martha Graham, to showcase its long history than with a party that includes arguably her best known work.

On the dance card for the Martha Graham Dance Company 90th Anniversary Gala on 18 April is an excerpt from that venerable dance.

The gala is the culmination of the 2016 New York season of the Martha Graham Dance Company. The season begins on 14 April at New York City Center. The Mannes Orchestra, under the baton of David Hayes, will provide live music throughout the season.

Also among the abundant array of Graham masterworks scheduled for the finale are “Chronicle,” “Tanagra,” “Heretic,” “Celebration” and “Lamentation.”

The new Martha Graham Dance Company app will provide access to the company's voluminous archives. Image courtesy of MGDC.

The gala will also feature a special performance by Aurélie Dupont, the retired prima ballerina of the Paris Opera Ballet and its incoming dance director. The program includes the New York premiere of a new work by Pontus Lidberg, too.

The evening winds down at the University Club of New York with dinner and dancing by professionals and amateurs.

In her work, MG clearly demonstrated that there is majesty in ordinary movement. Her legacy puts MGDC in the pantheon of great modern dance troupes.

During a tribute to MGDC's anniversary during its recent New York season, Paul Taylor American Modern Dance presented MG's Diversion of Angels. Paul Taylor is an MGDC alumnus, and the tribute marked the first time his company had performed an MG work.

Aurélie Dupont in "Daphnis et Chloe." Photo by Martin Bureau, courtesy of AFP.

Although the term modern in "modern dance" does not necessarily refer to "of the moment," it now marks MGDC as a very cool granny. The company introduces the MGDC iPhone and iOS app (accessible on Android devices and Web platforms).

Visit to learn more about the Martha Graham Dance Company 90th Anniversary Gala.
Visit to learn more about the Martha Graham Dance Company
2016 New York season.
Visit to learn more about the MGDC app.

YAGP Presents Its Annual "Stars"-Studded Fete

Artem Ovcharenko, principal dancer, Bolshoi Theatre as Prince Desire in Sleeping Beauty. Photo courtesy of YAGP.

If you still think that Brooklyn has not arrived, consider this: Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) is holding its Finals Week and finals galas in the Borough of Kings!

"Stars of Today Meet the Stars of Tomorrow" fills the Howard Gilman Opera House at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) on 28 and 29 April. Gala Day 1 is open to the public, while YAGP judges, participants, parents and teachers get exclusive invites to Gala Day 2.

The duplicate galas were conceived to accommodate the demand for seats and to ensure that participating dancers, dance instructors and parents have an opportunity to see the show. The celebrations are the culmination of YAGP Finals Week, the world’s largest student ballet scholarship audition. YAGP is a nonprofit organization.

The acclaimed ballerina Natalia Makarova and Sergei Filin, the recently named director of the Bolshoi Theatre’s Young Choreographers’ Workshop, are among dance community notables who will award special prizes during finals week.

The gala dance program is two acts. YAGP finalists perform in Act I. The second act features some of the world’s most celebrated dancers. The spectacular Grand Defilé features all YAGP participants. Among the established dancers will be the Bolshoi's Artem Ovcharenko.

Original, innovative choreography created especially for the occasion is also a hallmark of the gala.

Visit to learn more about the YAGP’s "Stars of Today Meet the Stars of Tomorrow" gala.

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