Christmas Oratorio opened in New York City in 1961, telling the story of the Nativity through modern dance. Focusing on joy, compassion and friendship, Weidman invented movements that reflect the wonderment and reverence of the subject. With sensitive portrayals of biblical figures and J. S. Bach’s passionate music, he created a captivating experience for audiences and dancers alike. Certainly, all who love dance and its history will want to see this performance, directed by Nacre founder Beth Fecteau.
In the history of modern dance, Weidman (1901-1975) is considered the pioneer of the movement away from exotic fantasy to a style that expressed great changes in the American culture of the ‘20s and ‘30s. A new choreography, unique to America, depicted human values and drama. What’s more, his work broke away from the gravity-defying nature of ballet and focused instead on a dance style that gave in to the natural pull of gravity.
In a career that extended for more than five decades, Weidman touched the lives and work of many well-known artists in the field of dance including Jose Limón, Alvin Ailey and Bob Fosse. This Nacre Dance Company revival of his Christmas Oratorio gives audiences in the Hudson Valley a rare opportunity to witness the innovative aesthetic and beauty of his work.
Kaatsbaan is a nonprofit, professional creative residence and performance facility that serves dance communities across the US and around the world, providing choreographers, composers, set designers and all dance artists with a setting where they can create and showcase new work, rehearse, perform and develop new productions. The Kaatsbaan Studio Theatre is located at 120 Broadway in Tivoli.
Saturday’s performance begins at 7:30 p.m., and on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children, with a $10 student rush at the door. Call (845) 757-5106 or visit www.kaatsbaan.org for further information.