“Square Dance,” “Almost Tango,” “In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated”
Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre
Salt Lake City, UT
April 18-9, 2015
by Leigh Witchel
copyright © 2015 by Leigh Witchel
Balanchine’s “Square Dance” has two separate lives. When first performed in 1957, it was a novelty; seven couples dancing simple steps in neat patterns recalling square dancing. To clinch the resemblance, Balanchine had the baroque music played by an onstage band and the dancing “called” by Elisha Keeler.
In 1976, Balanchine stripped the production elements, eliminated the caller and added a male solo. This pristine, apollonian version is the one most dancegoers have seen. But the caller isn’t yet extinct.
Katherine Lawrence and Rex Tilton in “Square Dance” Photo © by Luke Isley