The DI, Year 1: Viennese dances for the people

By Tara Zahra
Copyright 2000, 2017 Tara Zahra

VIENNA — “Volksoper” translates literally into “people’s opera,” and it was a good deal of fun to discover Tuesday night at the Volksoper Wien that the Viennese Volksoper is supporting dance for the people as well. “Sintflut,” which premiered Friday here, was an evening-length modern dance production based on the story of Noah’s Ark. The piece has the potential to reach out to even the most resistant audience, and to make children beg for dance lessons. Of course, I have been told that in Europe “outreach” is not a part of the vocabulary for dance companies, for whom an audience is a given. But Vienna is a city known for its music and not its dance, so it was a pleasure to see a new work from a Viennese choreographer which brought in a respectable crowd on a Tuesday night. (The practice of selling tickets at half price to students, military, and the unemployed an hour before curtain time must help.)

To get the rest of the article, first published on June 22, 2000, subscribers please contact publisher Paul Ben-Itzak at paulbenitzak@gmail.com. Not a subscriber? Subscribe to the Dance Insider for just $29.95/year ($99 for institutions gets full access for all your teachers, students, dance company members, etc.) and receive full access to our Dance Insider Archive of 2,000 exclusive reviews by 150 leading dance critics of performances on five continents from 1999 through 2015. Just designate your PayPal payment in that amount to paulbenitzak@gmail.com , or write us at that address to find out about payment by check or in Euros. You can also purchase a complete copy of the Archives for just $49 (individuals) or $99 (institutions) Contact Paul at paulbenitzak@gmail.com .

The DI, Year One: Celebrity Dance Match — It’s Balanchine vs. Forsythe on Paris Opera Ballet at the Vienna State Opera House

By Tara Zahra
Copyright 2000 Tara Zahra

VIENNA — I have seen plenty of Balanchine in my time, and quite a bit of William Forsythe. But through the juxtaposition of the two, brilliantly executed by the Paris Opera Ballet at the Vienna State Opera House Saturday, I learned a few things about both. Balanchine and Forsythe exposed each other, through a conversation full of rebellions and homages and calm replies. And yet it could not be considered an argument, because in the end the range of works presented affirmed the fungible potential of classical technique — to express the spirit of a time, to be used as the language for an argument or an agreement, to swing from high culture to low, even when the choreography is ostensibly only “about” choreography, music, and technique itself.

To receive the rest of the article, first published on July 24, 2000, subscribers can contact publisher Paul Ben-Itzak at paulbenitzak@gmail.com. Not a subscriber? Subscribe to the Dance Insider for just $29.95/year ($99 for institutions gets full access for all your teachers, students, dance company members, etc.) and receive full access to our Dance Insider Archive of 2,000 exclusive reviews by 150 leading dance critics of performances on five continents from 1998 through 2016, plus five years of the Jill Johnston Letter. Just designate your PayPal payment to paulbenitzak@gmail.com, or write us at that address to find out about payment by check or in Euros. You can also purchase a complete copy of the Archives for just $49 (individuals) or $129 (institutions) Purchase by March 30, 2017 and receive a second, free copy for the recipient of your choice. Contact Paul at paulbenitzak@gmail.com .