Lovers loving. Dancers dancing. Fountains rising and falling. At the ballet.
But everything was beautiful at the ballet
Graceful men lift lovely girls in white
Yes, everything was beautiful at the ballet
I was happy… at the ballet.
At the Ballet, from A Chorus Line
Because ’tis true. If I could have attached a full-length video of the Justin Peck’s Everywhere We Go, a ballet he choreographed for the New York City Ballet, with music composed by Sufjan Stevens, then I would have done so.
If I had a magic wand, and could touch the screen of my computer with it, somehow sending out into the Googleverse the feeling, the electricity, the wonder, the joy, the energy of the collaboration that is Everywhere We Go, then I would do it. I would do it. I would do it.
Were I the sort to flagrantly disregard the rules of not videoing live performances at the ballet, I would have happily transgressed and captured for you the beauty and magic I saw last night.
Several weeks ago I read an article in the Times (link below) about Peck’s interest in the music of singer/song writer/composer Sufjan Stevens, who hadn’t liked ballet, had known anything about ballet, had assumed that his life would never intersect with the lives of men and women who spend their days moving their bodies to the sounds, beats, vibes and rhythm of different kinds of music.
Until, that is, young and inventive Justin Peck says Hey can I use your music for one of my dances? and Stevens wakes up to the glory of dance, and ballet in particular, and says Yes, and then the two of them are off and running headlong into a collaboration.
The latest round of which is the sublime (a little hyperbole is allowed when describing a sublime dance experience) Everywhere We Go. I really hate that videos are not readily available to the public. I used to be a dancer and while there is nothing like seeing a performance in person, for so many people across the country and the world that will never be a possibility and so a good video is a sublime (there’s that word again) second best choice.
But I feel bad, because I know something you all don’t know, which is what the fully fleshed out version of the tidbit you see in this video is like on stage, in front of an audience, with an orchestra, the lights dimming finally to that thing we call a live performance, outside the moon shining, and the fountain rising and falling at Lincoln Square, but inside on stage, dancers dancing, hands clapping, curtains calling.
The stage is one of the few places where true respect, true manners and true appreciation exists in a protected space. And so I did not sneak my iPhone out to take a surreptitious video. It exists in my memory. I went to sleep with a smile and woke up with one, too.
But here’s a little breakfast, of dancers dancing…at. the. ballet.
Everywhere We Go, with Justin Peck and Sufjan Stevens:
Justin Peck website:
#JustinPeck #SufjanStevens #EverywhereWeGo #NYCBallet