2 & 3 Part Inventions

Choreography by: Jerome Robbins

Music by: Johann Sebastian Bach

This inventive work shines with optimism and youthful spirit as its eight dancers move to eleven touching Bach piano studies.

J. S. Bach wrote these piano studies, Inventions and Sinfonias, between 1720 and 1723 to help instruct his son in the playing and handling of two- and three-part pieces. They are mostly short studies and have been given neither tempi nor dynamic marks. There are as many interpretations as there are pianists, as one can conclude by those recorded. Glenn Gould even rearranged the order, mixing the two and three parts alternately. Robbins, who selected a dozen of all the pieces for this work, choreographed 2 & 3 Part Inventions for the School of American Ballet’s annual Workshop Performance in 1994.

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Inventions and Sinfonias: Inventio 1, BWV 772; Inventio 4, BWV 775; Sinfonia 4, BWV 790; Sinfonia 6, BWV 792; Inventio 12, BWV 783; Inventio 6, BWV 777; Sinfonia 11, BWV 797; Inventio 8, BWV 779; Inventio 15, BWV 786; Sinfonia 15, BWV 801; Sinfonia 9, BWV 795; Inventio 1, BWV 772 (1720-1723)
June 4, 1994, School of American Ballet, Julliard Theater
NYC Ballet Premiere
January 19, 1995, New York State Theater
Original Cast
Kristina Fernandez, Eliane Munier, Riolama Lorenzo, Jennifer Chipman, Benjamin Millepied, Amaury Lebrun, Alex Ketley, Seth Belliston

27 Min.
Set by
Jean Rosenthal
Lighting by
Jennifer Tipton