Posts Tagged ‘Shen Wei’

All in the Family: Paul Taylor’s American Modern Dance Company

The dance company founded by Paul Taylor in 1954 returned for their annual season (March 10-29) to the former New York State Theater, but it returned under a different name: Paul Taylor’s American Modern Dance Company. This is significant. New to the company’s title are the words American and Modern. Taylor, now 84 years old and considered the surviving grand master of American modern dance, appears to be concerned about the health of his chosen genre. With his company’s new title comes a new mission: to present works by other choreographers, both young and old, who are perceived to be part of the American modern dance family tree.

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Shen Wei at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Shen Wei makes dances that read like landscape paintings. So, it made perfect sense when Shen Wei Dance Arts installed itself for two nights (June 6 and 13) at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Chinese-born choreographer designs costumes and paints backdrops that fuse with his serene movement style. But rather than making a backdrop for three dances (seen June 13), Shen Wei used a space where marble and bronze statues dwell: the Charles Engelhard Court of the American Wing. It’s a theatrical setting bar none. To live and recorded music for a sold-out crowd, Shen Wei’s 17 dancers initially possessed statue-like stillness. And like the statues in the Engelhard Court, they were mostly naked.

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