THE TIMES ARE RACING
February 8, 2017
Out of breath, the New York City Ballet dancers swarm the stage outfitted in a motley array of street clothes and sneakers. Not a toe shoe ballet, Justin Peck inserts himself into his new dance "The Times Are Racing” and stokes the ballet steps with tap swinging through some sizzling urban contemporary dance slang.
That smell of asphalt found in Jerome Robbins' "West Side Story," permeates the chorus. Full out runs slam to a stop, twist and turn into pounding rhythms that rise to waving arms over stumbling hops.
The impeccable Tyler Peck’s urban tautness is juggled by the naturally street smart Amar Ramasar. Not unlike the 1960’s R&B back-up singers, Brittany Pollack, Gretchen Smith, Savannah comment on the central action in dips and hip clicks, pulling away from the swirling crowd and then re-inserting themselves in the tribe.
A combo tap, soft-shoe duet explodes with Broadway style sass and movement bling between Robert Fairchild and Justin Peck. Flipping up on his toes, spinning like the best of the street dancers, Fairchild sprays charisma finishing on a display of tight technique.
Across from Fairchild, Peck shows off his own looseness and cool slides. Must feel fabulous dancing your heart out in your own dance. Not surprisingly, the audience whooped and hollered at a refreshing dance that spoke to the restlessness felt by people experiencing turmoil and doubt.
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY -- Celia Ipiotis