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The apex of Balanchine’s collaborations with Igor Stravinsky, Agon is an intense masterpiece and signature NYCB work, ever contemporary in its athletic competitiveness.
The Agon pieces were all modeled after examples in a French dance manual of the mid-17th Century. Agon ("The Contest") is not a mythical subject piece to complete a trilogy with Apollo and Orpheus. In fact, it has no musical or choreographic subject beyond the new interpretation of the venerable dances that are its pretext. It was even conceived without provision for scenery and was independent, at least in Stravinsky’s mind, of décor, period, and style.
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