Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Review: A Display of Pure Joy at BALLETNEXT's Spring Season

Review: A Display of Pure Joy at BALLETNEXT's Spring Season

So often, dance is portrayed as a mysterious enigma, dramatic and otherworldly through overly complicated choreography and a hard-to-follow backstory. As a result, its magic can get lost in translation. But at BalletNext's spring season at New York Live Arts, pure joy was served as the appetizer, entrée, and dessert in a spirited program curated by former American Ballet Theatre dancer and BalletNext Artistic Director, Michele Wiles.

The world premiere of "The Pianist" kicked off the evening, a comedic celebration of the ups and downs of a ballet class. Wiles' clean technique and balance has sustained beautifully over time, setting the stage for the other dancers to join in on the fun. The company's artists are all beautiful and bright, but what was most impressive was their dedication to serving Bach's jovial Concerto in D minor score, grounding its melodic resonances with spritely jetés and playful piqué turns.

Up next, the world premiere of "Experience" debuted, featuring talented duo Violetta Komyshan and Natalie Stys. In an exploration of the dual sides of the self, the two dancers showcased impressive acrobatic athleticism, often staying in close contact with one another to highlight the interconnectedness of the singular's complexities. The choreography started out strong, but grew repetitive as time progressed. Yet Elliot Figg and Angela Kim's original score of the same name helped to sustain the piece's palpable drama.

Review: A Display of Pure Joy at BALLETNEXT's Spring Season The world premiere of "Follin" was third, which featured a complete thematic departure for the company. Set to an electronica-inspired score by Figg and Kim, the piece highlighted a more subdued sensibility, blending lyricism with pedestrian movements. As the piece shifted from darkness to lightness, the choreography swiftly adapted, but ultimately concluded without resolution.

But the final piece of the evening, the world premiere of "Vibrer", stole the show, providing an immediate breath of fresh air into the space in the form of refreshing syncopation. Putting the dancers' incredible extensions on display, their bold lines created more than just art, but also a network of sisterhood; the love and respect they feel for each other was palpable.

BalletNext is a company with passion and burgeoning talent; I'm excited to see how they continue to grow.

Photo Credit: Eduardo Patino




From This Author - Christina Pandolfi


Review: SARASOTA BALLET BRINGS THE DRAMA to The Joyce TheaterReview: SARASOTA BALLET BRINGS THE DRAMA to The Joyce Theater
August 18, 2022

What did our critic think of REVIEW: SARASOTA BALLET BRINGS THE DRAMA TO THE JOYCE at The Joyce Theater?

BWW Review: The Orchard at the Baryshnikov Arts Center Explores the Explosive Dynamics of Life, Liberty, & FreedomBWW Review: The Orchard at the Baryshnikov Arts Center Explores the Explosive Dynamics of Life, Liberty, & Freedom
June 18, 2022

What impact does social class have on the relationships we forge with other people? And what becomes of those relationships when forces beyond our control take effect? These are a few of the many questions examined inThe Orchard, a modernized, high-tech adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Shown at the Baryshnikov Arts Center, the cast is led by the man/myth/legend himself, Mikhail Baryshnikov, and the strikingly-sophisticated Jessica Hecht.

BWW Review: Town Hall's BROADWAY BY THE YEAR® Brings Us On a Nostalgic RideBWW Review: Town Hall's BROADWAY BY THE YEAR® Brings Us On a Nostalgic Ride
May 24, 2022

They say the neon lights are bright on Broadway. On May 23, 2022, Town Hall’s tribute to show business of the past—BROADWAY BY THE YEAR—proved just that. From the glitz and glamour of the musical revue, to updated standards from beloved jukebox musicals, this one-night-only spectacle delivered on powerhouse vocalists, exciting dance numbers, and a celebration of “everything old is new again.”

BWW Review: Stephen Petronio Company Makes a Sensorial Return to The Joyce TheaterBWW Review: Stephen Petronio Company Makes a Sensorial Return to The Joyce Theater
May 18, 2022

It’s been a long 2 years. The world has been in a constant state of uncertainty, as we still find ourselves in the midst of social, political, and medical turmoil. Yet art, in all its forms, is both the mirror and the escape for these collective woes. It shows us who we are, helping us make sense of our reality. But it also allows us to succumb to pleasures of the senses, even if only temporarily, to bask in what could be. With such a tried-and-true legacy at The Joyce Theater, Stephen Petronio Company returned to the familiar on May 17, 2022 to remind us all of just that, exemplifying that “dance is a kind of social glue that keeps all us connected.”

BWW Review: COMPLEXIONS CONTEMPORARY BALLET at The Joyce Holds Up a Mirror to our Ever-Changing WorldBWW Review: COMPLEXIONS CONTEMPORARY BALLET at The Joyce Holds Up a Mirror to our Ever-Changing World
November 20, 2021

It’s weird and wonderful to be in the theatre again. These days, everything looks different—the way you enter; IDs and vaccine cards in hands, security guards keeping everything in order. But once I step into The Joyce Theatre to see Complexions Contemporary Ballet, it all felt perfectly familiar. Fellow art lovers, buzzing about, expressing their excitement and passion all behind masked faces. A compilation of contemporary music flooded our eardrums before the start of the show. Perhaps an unexpected choice at first listen, but as ‘Losing My Religion’ played, it all made perfect sense to frame what we were about to see.