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New York City Ballet: "Concerto Barocco", "Kammermusik No. 2", "Who Cares?"
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New York City Ballet: "Concerto Barocco", "Kammermusik No. 2", "Who Cares?"

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New York City Ballet
(New York City Ballet Website)

Concerto Barocco
Kammermusik No. 2
Who Cares?

Founders, George Balanchine and Lincoln Kirstein
Founding Choreographers: George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins
Ballet Master in Chief, Peter Martins
Ballet Mistress, Rosemary Dunleavy
Children’s Ballet Master, Dena Abergel
Orchestra, Interim Music Director, Andrews Sill
Managing Dir. Communications & Special Projects, Robert Daniels
Manager, Media Relations, Katharina Plumb
The David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
January 25, 2014 Matinee

(Read More NYC Ballet Reviews).

Concerto Barocco (1948): Music by John Sebastian Bach (Double Violin Concerto in D Minor), Choreography by George Balanchine, Lighting by Mark Stanley, Guest Conductor: Scott Ellaway, 1st Violin: Arturo Delmoni, 2nd Violin: Nicolas Danielson, Performed by Maria Kowroski, Sara Mearns, Tyler Angle, and the Company. For today’s matinee, Jared Angle, Company Principal, appeared at the pre-performance curtain to introduce the program, a new touch to draw the audience in.

The “Largo” central movement was astonishing, with Maria Kowroski and Tyler Angle in eloquent smoothness, enhancing the symmetrical lines of Balanchine’s choreography. Scott Ellaway conducted with upbeat buoyancy. Sara Mearns and Maria Kowroski performed in the peak of their dance maturity, poised on each beat. They were both sensual yet sophisticated. Tyler Angle, an attentive partner, seemed to be enjoying the moment. The Corps created the visual geometric shapes so inherent in this work. They were right on time, well balanced, and positioned, at each turn of musical phrasing. The solo violinists made the most of the renowned Bach theme.

Kammermusik No. 2 (1978): Music by Paul Hindemith, Choreography by George Balanchine, Costumes by Ben Benson, Lighting by Mark Stanley, Guest Conductor: Scott Ellaway, Piano Solo: Cameron Grant, Performed by Rebecca Krohn, Abi Stafford, Jared Angle, Amar Ramasar, and the Company.

It’s been quite a while since this piece was last reviewed on this page, and it was good to revisit the edgy Hindemith score and Balanchine’s angular choreography for a Corps of eight men and two Principal duos. Scott Ellaway once again conducted, with refined finish. The men’s arms swing like airplanes, in diagonal lines, twisting their torsos, hopping at times. The music has a quasi-glass harmonica effect, with French horn and piano, making this almost four decade-old work seem quite contemporary. Floating formations and dynamic demeanor were my impression of Rebecca Krohn and Jared Angle, along with Abi Stafford and Amar Ramasar. Cameron Grant’s solo piano passages were stark and stunning. The piece grabs the eye..

Who Cares? (1970): Music by George Gershwin, Adapted and Orchestrated by Hershy Kay, Choreography by George Balanchine, Scenery by Jo Mielziner, Costumes by Santo Loquasto, Lighting by Mark Stanley, Conductor: Andrews Sill, Pianist: Elaine Chelton, Performed by Ashley Bouder, Tiler Peck, Teresa Reichlen, Robert Fairchild, and the Company.

The most vibrant piano solos, by Elaine Chelton, drove this ballet into memorable performances. “Fascinatin’ Rhythm”, “Liza”, and “I Got Rhythm” never sounded better, and Andrews Sill was in the pit, as well. Tiler Peck and her fiancé, Robert Fairchild, partnered in rapture, as stage chemistry abounded. Their rendition of “The Man I Love” was hopefully filmed. Ashley Bouder’s “My One and Only” was danced with a wink and a smile by this stage savvy Principal, and Teresa Reichlen’s “I’ll Build a Stairway to Paradise” was elegant and sumptuous, with her endless legs kicking and strutting, as she seized the stage. Mr. Fairchild could command any Broadway stage, with his savoir faire and flexible, fast turns, and Ms. Peck dances with electricity these days. The Corps was wildly entertaining, and, again, the music set the mood.

Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild
in Balanchine's "Who Cares?"
Courtesy of Paul Kolnik

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at