Dance

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A life spent dancing: Manfred Fischbeck on stage with members of Group Motion. (Image courtesy of Group Motion.)

Remembering Philly dance icon Manfred Fischbeck

Fifty years of Fridays

Manfred Fischbeck passed away on March 17, 2021, but his Philadelphia dance legacy lives on. Merilyn Jackson remembers.
Merilyn Jackson

Merilyn Jackson

Profiles 5 minute read
Bright, lyrical movement: Mayara Piniero and Zecheng Liang in Balanchine’s ‘Allegro Brilliante.’ (photo by Alexander Iziliaev.)

The Pennsylvania Ballet presents ‘Resilience’

Springtime set to music

The Pennsylvania Ballet returns with ‘Resilience,’ a streaming program filmed at the Performance Garage and featuring choreographers Christopher Wheeldon, George Balanchine, Angel Corella, and Dwight Roden. Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 4 minute read
An enveloping emotional connection: Weiwei Ma in Kun-Yang Lin’s ‘Inside.’ (Photo by Rob Li.)

The Annenberg Center presents Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers

Community in solitude

Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers explores loss, solitude, and hope in five reimagined excerpts from Lin’s longer works and a world premiere danced by the choreographer himself. Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 5 minute read
A beautifully devastating performance: Kai Rapelyea performs with Rennie Harris Puremovement. (Image courtesy of the Annenberg.)

The Annenberg Center presents Rennie Harris Puremovement

An embodied history for our times

Rennie Harris Puremovement offers embodied history for our times in a livestreamed performance from the Annenberg. Melissa Strong reviews.
Melissa Strong

Melissa Strong

Reviews 4 minute read
Exploring the self, in community and isolation: the ensemble of ‘Redefine US, from the INside OUT.’ (Image courtesy of HopeBoykinDance.)

The Annenberg presents Hope Boykin’s ‘Redefine US, from the Inside OUT’

Dancing renewed identity

Dancer and choreographer Hope Boykin premieres ‘Redefine US, from the INside OUT,’ a personal and emotional journey that explores identity through suffering and renewal. Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 3 minute read
Transported to the world of ‘Sanctuary’: Francesca Forcella in Stephanie Martinez’s ‘Her Blood a Wild River.’ (Photo by Andrea Yorita.)

BalletX Beyond presents Maddie Hanson, Gustavo Ramirez Sansano, and Stephanie Martinez

Continuing Beyond

BalletX concludes its spring season of world premieres as it began, dancing with the camera in three new short films by choreographers Maddie Hanson (‘Virtuality’), Gustavo Ramirez Sansano (‘Hernando's Hideaway’), and Stephanie Martinez (‘Her Blood a Wild River’). Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 4 minute read
Questioning the bounds of fantasy and reality: ‘A Modern-Day Carmen Fantasy.’ (Image courtesy of the Philadelphia Orchestra.)

The Philadelphia Orchestra and Brian Sanders’ JUNK present ‘A Modern-Day Carmen Fantasy’

Masking modern moves

‘A Modern-Day Carmen Fantasy’ reunites the Philadelphia Orchestra with Brian Sanders’ JUNK for an innovative concert with movement for home viewers. Melissa Strong reviews.
Melissa Strong

Melissa Strong

Reviews 4 minute read
Carrying each other through illness and sorrow: Shawn Cusseaux and Skyler Lubin in Manuel Vignoulle’s ‘Heal.’ (Photo by Daniel Madoff.)

BalletX presents Tsai Hsi Hung, Manuel Vignoulle, and Francesca Harper

Dancing in the bubble

BalletX continues its season of world-premiere short dance films, with a third installment featuring choreographers Tsai Hsi Hung, Manuel Vignoulle, and Francesca Harper. Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 4 minute read
A striking architectural moment: Xin Ying and Lloyd Knight in ‘Dark Meadow.’ (Photo by Brigid Pierce.)

The Annenberg Center presents excerpts of Martha Graham’s best-loved works

The streaming advantage of dance

The Martha Graham Dance Company offered a taste of the company’s rich and emotionally charged repertoire in a series of excerpts from Graham’s best-loved works, performed by Lloyd Knight and Xin Ying. Camille Bacon-Smith reviews.
Camille Bacon-Smith

Camille Bacon-Smith

Reviews 4 minute read
It’s not just about the holiday tradition: the Pennsylvania Ballet’s Lillian DiPiazza in the 2019 ‘Nutcracker.' (Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.)

What happened to ‘Nutcracker’ in the year of COVID?

Why should we tune in to ‘The Nutcracker’ in 2020?

What is the state of ‘The Nutcracker’—beloved holiday tradition and the dance-company equivalent of retail’s Black Friday—in 2020? Melissa Strong considers.
Melissa Strong

Melissa Strong

Essays 6 minute read