By Seth Fera-Schanes
BalletNext kicked off the 2018 season in grand style with 5 days of performances at New York Live Arts in Chelsea.
Michele Wiles, founder of the contemporary ballet company and former principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre choreographed 4 pieces for the shows: The Pianist, Experience, Follin and Vibrer, Follin.
The Pianist, set to Johann Sebastian Bach’s Concerto in D minor places five female dancers in a playful comedy suggestive of a modernized version of Edgar Degas’ masterpieces depicting ballerinas.
Experience is a duet that explores the possibility of female partnering.
Follin is a world premiere that melds the dance of sign language with ballet. Co-choreographed and performed with deaf dancer Bailey Anne Vincent, this work featuring six females utilizes and expands on the intricate hand movements of American Sign Language.
Vibrer fuses classical ballet with the improvisational flow of jazz, andcontinues Wiles’ partnership with Grammy nominated jazz trumpeter Tom Harrell.
Each piece was performed by 6 of BalletNext’s dancers accompanied with a pianist, violinist, trumpet and Follin also included a sign language interpreter.
This was a special performance and the audience was captivated throughout. From the first note of The Pianist to the incredible movement in Experience, I was leaning forward in my seat doing everything I could to take it all in. BalletNext gets a high recommend from Full Access for anyone looking to experience dance and contemporary ballet in the city.