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Anatomy of a Dance

Anatomy of a Dance: Gonzalo Garcia on Danses Concertantes

Gonzalo Garcia discusses the challenge of maintaining constant motion in the pas de deux of Balanchine’s Danses Concertantes and curious experience of wearing gloves throughout the performance.

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  • Anatomy of a Dance: Lauren Lovette on Voices

    Lauren Lovette gives insight into the character in her variation in Alexei Ratmansky's Voices that's inspired by the emotion in the 'voice' underpinning Peter Ablinger's score, Japanese actress Setsuko Hara.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Ashley Bouder on Donizetti Variations

    Ashley Bouder reveals all the things she loves about her absolute favorite role to perform – Balanchine's Donizetti Variations.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Erica Pereira on Divertimento from 'Le Baiser de la Fée'

    Erica Pereira reveals some of the special details and technicalities of the tricky partnering in Balanchine's choreography to Stravinsky's lyrical score in Divertimento from 'Le Baiser de la Fée'.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Emma Von Enck on Composer's Holiday

    Dancer Emma Von Enck reveals what it's like to dance a prominent featured role as a first year corps de ballet member in a ballet created by the youngest choreographer in NYCB history, Gianna Reisen.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Anthony Huxley on Belles-Lettres

    Anthony Huxley talks about the liberation he experiences while dancing in Belles-Lettres, which showcases Peck’s unique familiarity with Huxley’s strengths—they’ve known each other since they were students in the School of American Ballet together.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet

    Sara Mearns discusses the boisterous fourth movement of Balanchine's Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet and the thrill of recognizing her unique take on the role she first fell in love with as a member of the Corps.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Teresa Reichlen on Union Jack

    Teresa Reichlen dives into the nostalgic tunes and intricate footwork that shape the Royal Canadian Air Force section of Balanchine’s Union Jack.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Joseph Gordon on Symphony in C

    Joseph Gordon explains how he maintains an easy, breezy upper body while riding the music in Balanchine’s challenging Symphony in C.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sterling Hyltin on Everywhere We Go

    Sterling Hyltin explores the exciting jumps and lifts in the second movement of Justin Peck’s ballet, and how some moments allow her to smile ‘hello’ to dancers waiting in the wings.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Megan Fairchild on DANCES AT A GATHERING

    Megan Fairchild discusses the subtle nuances that come with dancing the Green Girl, and how the role has a different flavor and feeling than others in Dances at a Gathering.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Ask la Cour on Stravinsky Violin Concerto

    Principal Dancer Ask la Cour talks about performing the second aria pas de deux in Balanchine’s Stravinsky Violin Concerto, which he likens to a co-dependent relationship.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Gretchen Smith on The Times Are Racing

    When revisiting the pas de quatre in Justin Peck’s The Times Are Racing, Corps de Ballet Member Gretchen Smith describes how dancing in sneakers instead of pointe shoes changes the way she approaches a role.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Daniel Ulbricht on Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes

    In his Anatomy of a Dance, Principal Dancer Daniel Ulbricht explains why performing Justin Peck’s Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes feels particularly American. He paints a picture: “Imagine that you are plowing a field here with your friends, you take a break on a hot day and decide to dance instead.”

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tiler Peck on A Midsummer Night's Dream

    Tiler Peck breaks down the Divertissement pas de deux in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, explaining why it’s her favorite Balanchine pas de deux to dance and how it feels like it was tailor-made for her and fellow Principal Dancer Tyler Angle.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tyler Angle on Herman Schmerman

    Principal Dancer Tyler Angle talks about working with choreographer William Forsythe on the pas de deux in Herman Schmerman, which he dances opposite Tiler Peck. He recalls, “[Fosythe’s] prime directive was ‘just show everybody how much better things are in a skirt.’”

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Silas Farley on THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

    Silas Farley discusses the kaleidoscopic patterns of The Sleeping Beauty’s Garland Dance, the only section of the ballet choreographed by George Balanchine.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

    Sara Mearns compares what it’s like to portray both good and evil through the universal language of ballet pantomime in the same scene of The Sleeping Beauty by breaking down her performances as both the villainous Carabosse and the beloved Lilac Fairy.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Taylor Stanley on Kyle Abraham's THE RUNAWAY

    “I love to move in other ways than a ballet dancer is meant to move,” Taylor Stanley reflects when talking about the first of his two solos in Kyle Abraham’s The Runaway, which is set to a piece from contemporary artist Nico Muhly.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Spartak Hoxha on Jerome Robbins’ INTERPLAY

    Spartak Hoxha talks about the most difficult aspects of performing the comedic solo from Jerome Robbins’ playful ballet Interplay. “You can’t force being funny,” he says. “It has to just kind of happens naturally.”

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tiler Peck on Jerome Robbins' OTHER DANCES

    Hear from Tiler Peck about her “heavenly” experience learning how to float on the music in Jerome Robbins’ Other Dances, where she rehearsed the work with one of its original performers: the legendary Mikhail Baryshnikov.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sterling Hyltin on George Balanchine's RUBIES

    Sterling Hyltin breaks down the playful and quirky pas de deux in George Balanchine’s Rubies, a singular work in his oeuvre which gives the dancers the chance to add their own flair in this flirtatious, sexy duet.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Abi Stafford on George Balanchine's EMERALDS

    A gentle and graceful solo in George Balanchine’s Emeralds provides an opportunity for Abi Stafford to step out of her comfort zone, en pointe in sparling adagio set to Gabriel Fauré’s music.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Teresa Reichlen on George Balanchine's DIAMONDS

    Attentiveness and concentration is required to bring George Balanchine’s Diamonds to life, and in the regal pas de deux, Teresa Reichlen elaborates about how she works with Russell Janzen to create a story that feels like the debut of two young royals.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sebastian Villarini-Velez on Jerome Robbins' FANCY FREE

    Sebastian Villarini-Velez steps into some iconic shoes taking on Fancy Free’s third sailor solo, requiring some debonair moves and a shake of the hips in a role originated and choreographed by Jerome Robbins himself.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Harrison Coll on Justin Peck's EASY

    Easy is a deceptive name for Justin Peck’s ballet, says Harrison Coll, with moves that are like a corkscrew and a jump that feels like snowboarding. The trick is making it look as simple as slipping on some sneakers and grooving.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Craig Hall on AFTERNOON OF A FAUN

    Teaching and dancing in this deceivingly simple Jerome Robbins ballet, according to Ballet Master and former NYCB dancer Craig Hall, requires a particular reflectiveness and focus to fully embody its sensual atmosphere where two dancers share a moment of discovery.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Peter Walker on DANCE ODYSSEY

    Peter Walker, the choreographer of dance odyssey, shares his artistic process for this final duet, where the slower movement gives the audience an opportunity to appreciate the musicality of Ashley Laracey and Adrian Danchig-Waring’s long-standing dance partnership.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Ashley Bouder on THE FOUR SEASONS

    The final movement of this Jerome Robbins ballet is a big party for Ashley Bouder that lets her bring sensuality and fun to the pas de deux. It’s also a virtuosic moment, with lots of technical challenges that must be performed with absolute precision.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Maria Kowroski on MOZARTIANA

    The lead role in this late-career Balanchine work often goes to to the most senior ballerina in the company. Maria Kowroski had to wait her turn, and it was worth it -- the musicality of the work gives her space to interpret the steps in a manner that’s both individual and reflective.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on Ratmansky’s NAMOUNA, A GRAND DIVERTISSEMENT

    Sara Mearns takes us into the hardest two minutes that she’s ever performed in her career as in the Ratmansky’s lighthearted and clever ballet, a performance that makes her feel like Superwoman when she’s finished.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Ashley Bouder on Justin Peck’s YEAR OF THE RABBIT

    Ashley Bouder talks about the artistic process of originating a role, and the great responsibility of setting the tone at the beginning of the ballet, bringing Justin Peck’s visually dynamic and physically challenging choreography to life.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Megan Fairchild on Ratmansky’s RUSSIAN SEASONS

    Megan Fairchild describes what it’s like to dance with three male partners whom she can’t acknowledge on stage, and who are invisible to her character. She especially highlights the trust that develops between them – which leads to a haunting image of a sleepwalking woman ascending a staircase.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tyler Angle on Bigonzetti’s OLTREMARE

    Tyler Angle highlights the precarious element and the highly gymnastic feats in this ballet about a traveling group of immigrants, and how this dramatic pas de deux serves as a microcosm of the whole story.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Teresa Reichlen on Balanchine’s CHACONNE

    Teresa Reichlen discusses the idiosyncrasies of George Balanchine’s unique variations on classic techniques, which showcases a no-frills focus on the interaction between the score and the choreography.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Maria Kowroski on Balanchine’s AGON

    Maria Kowroski discusses how this Balanchine classic is, at its root, the story of a relationship. Agon translates as “contest” in Greek, and the ballet’s central pas de deux is a back-and-forth conversation between a couple, manifested in physical form.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tyler Angle on CORTÈGE HONGROIS

    In the lavish Balanchine classic Cortège Hongrois, a ballet that pays tribute to the choreography of Marius Petipa, dancer Tyler Angle wants to elevate the audience’s experience through focusing on the small details, considering the specific stops and pauses that make this courtly parade a delight to perform.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on LA VALSE

    Sara Mearns reveals all the challenges of dancing with death in Balanchine’s La Valse – including dancing with so much abandon that she risks a sore neck the next day and dealing with an inevitable wardrobe malfunction.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Jared Angle on LITURGY

    Jared Angle discusses the technical and physical challenges of stepping into a role choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon on former Principal Dancer Jock Soto, and the problems of holding your breath in anticipation while concentrating on choreographically intense moments.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Laine Habony on Peter Martins’ SWAN LAKE

    Laine Habony gives insight into the teamwork involved in the Corps de Ballet’s first entrance in Swan Lake — and the challenges of not looking like a “lazy swan,” keeping her place in line, and the importance of performing in the correct shoe for intense pointe work.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Russell Janzen on Peter Martins’ SWAN LAKE

    Russell Janzen talks about the importance of the Black Swan pas de deux in the dramatic action of Swan Lake, and the level of trust required between himself and the ballerina in the role of Odette/Odile (Teresa Reichlen) that helps convey the emotional connection the two characters share.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on Symphony in C

    Sara Mearns describes the near-psychic connection that exists between herself and her partner when dancing the adagio in SYMPHONY IN C.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Anthony Huxley on THE FOUR TEMPERAMENTS

    Anthony Huxley reflects on his fruitless search for perfection in THE FOUR TEMPERAMENTS' Melancolic variation.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Adrian Danchig-Waring and Jared Angle on RED ANGELS

    Adrian Danchig-Waring and Jared Angle break down the idiosyncratic movements that make RED ANGELS a "study in contrasts".

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Unity Phelan on THE INFERNAL MACHINE

    Unity Phelan walks us through the cat-and-mouse pacing of Peter Martins' THE INFERNAL MACHINE.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Andrew Veyette on EVERYWHERE WE GO

    Andrew Veyette discusses how a spirit of camaraderie and propulsive movement drive Justin Peck's EVERYWHERE WE GO.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on SLAUGHTER ON TENTH AVENUE

    Sara Mearns explores an entirely different side of her dancing when performing as the high-kicking Stripper in Balanchine's vampy SLAUGHTER ON TENTH AVENUE

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tyler Angle on THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

    Tyler Angle explores how he and his partner can find individuality in the traditional, iconic choreography of the Wedding Pas de Deux in THE SLEEPING BEAUTY, and how dancers can feel more like themselves in classic roles.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tiler Peck on THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

    Tiler Peck discusses dancing the most difficult role in the repertory, Aurora in THE SLEEPING BEAUTY.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tiler Peck on THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

    Tiler Peck walks us through the Vision Scene of THE SLEEPING BEAUTY and the difficulty of appearing dreamlike after the physical demands of Act I.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Teresa Reichlen on PRODIGAL SON

    Teresa Reichlen on the art of seduction in George Balanchine’s provocative work THE PRODIGAL SON.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Megan Fairchild on ALLEGRO BRILLANTE

    Megan Fairchild on the building drama of her solo in ALLEGRO BRILLANTE.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Lauren Lovette on THE CAGE

    Lauren Lovette discusses the liberating process of getting into the Novice character in Jerome Robbins' experimental work THE CAGE.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Claire Kretzschmar on Episodes

    Claire Kretzschmar discusses dancing the "Five Pieces" portion in EPISODES and how she relies on her partner to navigate an atmosphere of suspect and the unknown.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sara Mearns on Serenade

    Sara Mearns reflects on how the music of SERENADE allows her and her partner to luxuriate in the moment and create new memories onstage.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tiler Peck on DANCES AT A GATHERING

    Tiler Peck walks us through the moments of repose in Jerome Robbins' DANCES AT A GATHERING and how they bring out a different side of her dancing.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Adrian Danchig-Waring on Moves

    Adrian Danchig-Waring walks us through the electrifying silence of Moves’ “angry pas de deux,” choreographed by Jerome Robbins.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Tyler Angle on Estancia

    Tyler Angle breaks down the small details and big moments that lend magic to the pas de deux in Christopher Wheeldon's ESTANCIA.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Sterling Hyltin on Hallelujah Junction

    Sterling Hyltin discusses how narrative and storytelling grounds her performance in Peter Martins' Hallelujah Junction.

  • Anatomy of a Dance: Megan Fairchild on BALLO DELLA REGINA

    Megan Fairchild breaks down the basic math that gets her through her favorite variation in Balanchine's BALLO DELLA REGINA.