Above: Holly Curran of New Chamber Ballet
Friday September 21, 2012 - A new work choreographed by Miro Magloire to Bach was to have been a highlight of the opening performances of New Chamber Ballet's 2012-2013 season, but an injury to one of Miro's dancers necessitated not only a change of repertoire but the rehearsing of a new dancer to fill out the ensemble. Miro has found himself in these kinds of jams before, and he and everyone involved emerged unscathed in the event.
Nora Brown, the girl who saved the day, is a beauty. I hope we'll see her dancing for Miro again in future. She stepped into the opening ballet, GHOST STORY, looking thoroughly at ease. She was joined by Katie Gibson and Holly Curran in this haunting little piece, the Morton Feldman score expertly played by violinist Miranda Cuckson and pianist Melody Fader.
A second Feldman work serves as the setting for GLOVE, with Melody Fader handling the demands of the composer's Extension 3 with thorough command. Again a trio of dancers: Elizabeth Brown, Holly Curran and Katie Gibson in this ballet where a pair of gloves (or the woman wearing them) becomes an object of desire.
THE LETTER, a third narrative-in-miniature, closed the evening with Melody's accomplished playing of the very dance-worthy Haydn score propelling Elizabeth Brown and Holly Curran on a merry chase around the piano. The girls are good actresses and very fine dancers, and the piece is enjoyable - though we never really know what's in those letters that keep getting passed about.
These story ballets have their charms and are amusing to watch, and they are quite demanding both technically and in their dramatic or comedic contexts. Yet it was the evening's one pure-dance work that spoke to us most clearly: MOMENTS for solo dancer and violin. Miranda Cuckson played the fiendishly demanding Salvatore Sciarrino score: a buzzy, fluttery, insectuous piece that demands unusual aspects of technique. Katie Gibson, who has made a lovely impression in many of Miro's works, was outstanding here both in terms of dancing and presence. She and Miranda won a sustained applause from the audience, and they had to come out for an extra bow.
Hopefully we shall see the new Bach piece later in the season, but at any rate New Chamber Ballet are off to a fine season-start. It was lovely to see Gabrielle Lamb, Emily SoRelle Adams, Sarah Atkins and Constantine Baecher among the crowd, and as ever I am thankful to Audrey Ross for making the arrangements.
New Chamber Ballet's next performances are set for November 16th and 17th at City Center Studios. Works by Miro Magloire and Constantine Baecher are on the bill.