NYTB/Chamber Works announces its return to Danspace Project with their REP program, this year featuring two world premieres: Robert La Fosse’s “A Soldier’s Tale” and Antonia Franceschi’s untitled new work. The program also features Sir Richard Alston’s company premiere of “Shimmer” and Pam Tanowitz’s “Double Andante.”
La Fosse’s “A Soldier’s Tale (L’Histoire du Soldat),” set to Igor Stravinsky’s original score for seven live musicians, tells the parable of a soldier who makes a deal with the devil, trading his fiddle for unlimited wealth. Although a dark Faustian fable based on a Russian folk tale, the score is a sharp departure from Russian traditionalism, which speaks to Stravinsky’s life at the time: broke and stripped of his royalties as a result of the Revolution.
Antonia Franceschi’s untitled new work, with an original score by Claire van Kampen, explores Lee Krasner’s works, specifically her series The Umber Paintings, which she made from 1959-1962 following the death of her husband, Jackson Pollock. Krasner painted these works in his vast studio, instead of the small room she had been working in before, with loose brushstrokes that were not fashionable at the time.
NYTB Resident Choreographer Richard Alston’s Shimmer, was first performed by Alston’s company in 2004, when it was described as an “impressive reverie” by The New York Times. Alston was drawn to Maurice Ravel’s elusive Sonatine (1903-05), in particular the contrasting pieces chosen for this work, which conjure dazzling sun-drenched seascapes and spin delicate webs of bell-like single notes: Oiseaux Tristes, Une Baroque sur l’Ocean, and La Valiée des Cloches.
Pam Tanowitz’s Double Andante, which will also be presented as part of Carnegie Hall’s Beethoven Celebration in 2020, was first performed by NYTB in 2014. This thirteen-minute piece with music from the Andante of Beethoven’s Sonata in D (Op. 28) is played twice, each time at different tempos.