A New Leader at New York Theater Ballet and a Call for New Audiences
The company’s 2017-18 season came to a close Thursday night at the Jacob K. Javits Center with a grand, if not a grandiose production of Giselle. I was fortunate to be there.
The production was led with the presence of new artistic director and choreographer Jonathan Bosis, who I’ll call the new leader. He joined the company in the fall of 2016 from London, where he had been the artistic director of the Royal Victorian Ballet since 2003–the first year that the company was made an operating, not a mere research, entity.
Bosis came to New York with a well-tuned, well-thought-out approach to dance. He had the vision to create a ballet that featured an ensemble of dancers who were not necessarily dancers trained by him. Rather, he created a new vision for dance through his choice of an all-female cast, with male dancers brought in for the most part to help out.
So far so good. The company’s New Works Festival, which I’ll be writing about later, has proven to be an excellent platform for new artistic directors to try and get a foothold in the world of dance. The company was able to build a good amount of goodwill with audiences from both sides of the cultural divide at the inaugural festival in June.
‘Giselle’ the First New Works to Reap a Season of Success
The 2014 production of Giselle, the ballet that started the company on its rollicking path, featured an all-male cast with two male leads, the charismatic and brilliant baritone of Andrew Whitworth as Valenere and the energetic and passionate baritone of Peter Jayne as Giselle. So far so good.
However, by the time of this season’s production, he had already made his mark