Showing posts from January, 2012

City Ballet: All Wheeldon

I’m calling it now. The All Wheeldon night at New York City Ballet is one of my favorite things, if not my number one favorite thing, of 2012. I am absolutely in love with Christopher Wheeldon’s choreography. His work is special enough, and to get to see three pieces in one night, for one of them to be his breakthrough work; for one to be a City Ballet premiere; for one of them to be a world premiere – it was a very special night. We begin with the world premiere of Les Carillons . Wheeldon’s latest work is set to Georges Bizet’s Suites No. 1 and 2 of L’Arlesienne . (The music was composed for an unsuccessful play. After the play closed, Bizet “took steps to ensure [the score’s] survival,” and turned it into an orchestral piece, according to repertory notes.) The conceptual artist choreographer teams with costume designer Mark Zappone (I want the women’s dresses!), scenic designer Jean-Marc Puissant and lighting designer Mary Louise Geiger to great effect. (More as we go through.)

SAG Award Wrap Up

Another award show down! The Screen Actors Guild Awards were presented last night, and, I’m a little disappointed to say, it was a rather uneventful night. There were some surprises, which I’ll get to later, but overall it was a rather tame night. As always, though, let’s begin with the fashion. The color of the night was greige. About 80% of the ladies walking the carpet were in some shade of gray/beige/nude. For example, Julianna Margulies (above left) added some sparkle to her greige and looked fabulous in Calvin Klein. Tilda Swinton (above right) – who usually chooses something interesting and fashion forward – looked so regular in Lanvin I almost didn’t recognize her. Winner Viola Davis (right) looked like a goddess in her Marchesa dress. This white, flowy gown didn’t quite fit into the greige trend but that’s fine – it just made her stand out more. Also getting in on the trend were Kristen Wiig (below left) and Lea Michele (below right). Neither got it quite right. Wiig looked

Media Morsels 1.27.12

New York City Ballet City Ballet is back in full swing! I had a great time last Friday night, enjoying an All Robbins program , and I cannot wait for the All Wheeldon night this weekend that will feature Christopher Wheeldon's breakthrough Polyphonia , a NYC Ballet premiere of DGV: Danse a Grande Vitesse and the world premiere of Les Carillons , Wheeldon's latest work. Time Out New York interviewed the uber-talented choreographer about the special evening. As previously noted , the unparalleled Wendy Whelan has a storied and successful relationship with Wheeldon (she wrote about it on ), and this weekend Whelan was featured in the New York Times . The profile focuses on her place in the company - she's one of the last few active dancers to have studied under Jerome Robbins - as well as her collaboration with Wheeldon. The NYC Ballet winter season goes through February so visit for more information and to purchase tickets. The Normal Heart


Wit is one of those dense, literary-allusion filled plays that comes off well on stage, and, I imagine, even better on paper. Margaret Edson’s Pulitzer Prize winning play – the only play this Atlanta, Georgia, teacher ever wrote – is debuting on Broadway, courtesy of the Manhattan Theatre Club. Lynne Meadows directs a tight and moving production starring the fearless Cynthia Nixon. Nixon plays Vivian Bearing, a professor of 17th century poetry (she’s particularly taken with the work of John Donne). It’s 1995 and Bearing has been diagnosed with advanced stage ovarian cancer. Her doctor recommends an aggressive and experimental course of chemotherapy. Throughout the ordeal, this rigid, private scholar has to learn to cede control, open up and, ultimately, find her humanity. Throughout the play, no matter if Bearing is in present day or playing herself as a five year old (Bearing often breaks the fourth wall and speaks directly to the audience, sort of meta-ly aware that she is perfor

City Ballet: In G Major; In Memory Of...; and The Concert

New York City Ballet is back for its winter season. Though the week kicked off with several Balanchine ballets, just in time for the founding choreographer’s birthday, on Friday evening I saw an all Robbins program. While I’ve seen a lot of Jerome Robbins, Friday night marked the first time I saw the three pieces on the program. First up, In G Major , a whimsical ballet set to Maurice Ravel’s music. The first two things I noticed were the costumes, which looked like 20s bathing suits, and the painted scrim, which suggested water. (Both were designed by Erte.) Given this combination, I couldn’t help but think this delightful ballet would make a good companion piece to Anything Goes . (I know, I know – Anything Goes is set in 1934. Close enough.) And that’s not the only connection I made. Overall, In G Major has the playfulness of Interplay and moves reminiscent of NY Export: Opus Jazz , two of my favorite Robbins ballets. In G Major featured principal dancers Maria Kowroski and

Oscar Nominees

The 84th Academy Award nominations were announced today! And there were actually some surprises. Nothing shocking, of course, but surprises nonetheless. Let's get right to it. (Below is a highlighted list of nominees. Visit for the full list.) Best Picture The Artist The Descendants Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close The Help Hugo Midnight in Paris Moneyball The Tree of Life War Horse This list wasn't so surprising, though we all know it's going to come down to The Artist and The Descendants , with the latter being my pick. I think the surprising thing about this list, particularly given nominations in other categories, is that there is not a tenth film. (With the other nominations it received, I thought Bridesmaids might have gotten a nod here.) Actor in a Leading Role Demian Bichir, A Better Life George Clooney, The Descendants Jean Dujardin, The Artist Gary Oldman, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Brad Pitt, Moneyball I'm surprised and disappointed