Ballet West Presents Les Noces at the Guggenheim Museum
As part of the prestigious Works & Process lecture series at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Ballet West presents Les Noces, Bronislava Nijinska’s ballet which celebrates its 100th anniversary next year.
On March 26, 2023, audiences will gain deeper insight into the Polish choreographer’s 1923 masterpiece (Les Noces is French for The Wedding). It is thus recognized because of the huge cast involved, not only in terms of its forty dancers, but also for the 40-member chorus, four soloists, four grand pianos, and percussion that must play Igor Stravinsky’s challenging score.
Les Noces is also recognized in ballet’s history as being one of the first collaborations between two women; expressionist artist Natalia Goncharova was the designer who collaborated with Nijinska.
“Bronislava Nijinska is perhaps one of the most instrumental and powerful figures in the development of classical ballet throughout early 20th century. She is an often-overlooked link between 19th Century classics and how we look at ballet now in the 21st Century. Performing Nijinska’s monumental Les Noces is a challenge for any company, with all its intricate architectural patterns and complex musicality. It demands a level of focus and sophistication from every dancer on the stage. Our Ballet West artists are such a team that they can conquer this work. The whole ballet is mesmerizing and I am honored to celebrate the 100th anniversary of its creation."
Artistic Director of Ballet West
Ballet West Presents Les Noces in New York
Sklute and Nijinksa scholar Lynn Garafola will participate in a discussion of the work, moderated by Linda Murray, Curator at the Jerome Robbins Dance Division, and New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. Six Ballet West artists will perform excerpts from the ballet highlighting the stylistic details that keep it as Avant-garde and spellbinding as when it first premiered.
This will be Ballet West’s return to the Guggenheim Museum. In 2019, the company was invited to do a lecture demonstration around the reconstruction of Balanchine’s 1925 Le Chant du Rossignol (The Song of the Nightingale).