by Jackson Holtz
Jerome Robbin’s “Glass Pieces” premiered in New York just days after the famed choreographer George Ballanchine died. The highly unorthodox piece is set to the pulsing and vibrant music of minimalist Phillip Glass. Its debut was said to give hope that American dance would survive following the huge hole Ballanchine’s death left.
“Glass Pieces” makes its Seattle debut through this weekend as the anchor to “Director’s Choice,” the season opener at Pacific Northwest Ballet. The production was selected by Peter Boal and features all 20th century works that, like “Glass Pieces,” are unorthodox and refreshingly original. Boal’s choice of the Robbin’s piece certainly gives hope for a strong, fresh season from the region’s premier dance company.
Two works by Jiri Kylian open the performance set to Mozart. Both are performed with a wink and a nod, not to mention a shake of a much-powdered wig. They’re fun and funny.
Nacho Duato’s “Jardi Tancat” is a fluid, organic and emotional dance set in pastoral Spain with rich, luscious Spanish music.
Then Robbin’s “Glass Pieces” comes boldly forward with fine precision and the pace of a New York City train station. Kudos to Carla Korbes and Batkhurel Bold for their wonderful performances.
Read more about Everett’s own “Andrew Bartee,” a member of the PNB company who dances in two of the four pieces. Catch PNB’s “Director’s Choice” through Oct. 3.