A major milestone in the career of any musician is their first time playing in New York’s Carnegie Hall. And apparently, their last. As a dancer and choreographer, I have a sneaking suspicion that my first and last time on this stage are one and the same, and it was probably last Monday.
These three incredible and historic stages were designed for music and vocal performance, not for dance. This past Monday, my cohort at NYU and I were taken on a special tour of the venue and showed some of the pitfalls and potentials of bringing dance into a music space. We talked about the hydraulics that allow for spatial changes in the floor plan and the possibilities of lighting without the common theatrical use of side booms. This tour was wonderful not only for the sheer amazement of walking through this iconic space but because it allowed us as dancers and dance makers to consider what questions we should be prepared to ask of any performance space as is necessary for a successful show. These are things like entrances and exits, where the stage manager will be to call the show, and flooring.
- Those green velvet chairs…just like my favorite downstairs ABT dancer lounge.
- I’m adding Carnegie to the list of theatres I plan to haunt when I’m D-E-D. That Andrew Moore photography is just exquisite.
As someone who has danced on pointe on carpet and on playground blacktops- please hold your applause until the end- I completely appreciate the tips on succesful and safe collaboration for dance in any space. Unfortunately, I doubt I’ll ever have to apply my knowledge in the specific site of Carnegie Hall. If I ever have the privilege of dancing or presenting here, I hope someone in the internet stratosphere will remind me of this ‘it’s never gonna happen!’ post.
If it was both debut and debunk on Monday, I’m glad I gave myself a little pique turn for fun, no audience or flooring necessary. Feel free to applaud now.