TREY MCINTYRE PROJECT IN TWO NEW WORKS AT THE PILLOW; SMASH SUCCESS IN 2005
DEMANDED A RETURN ENGAGEMENT
Becket, MA-Given the overwhelming audience response to the Trey McIntyre
Project last season, Pillow Executive Director Ella Baff has high hopes for
this sleek young ensemble's run this year in the Ted Shawn Theatre, August
2-6. Says Baff, "This is a great new company that audiences will really
connect with." In the fifteen years McIntyre has been making works, he has
gone from the young Kansan prodigy to a jet-setting freelancer commissioned
by the likes of New York City Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, and American Ballet
Theatre. In this company, audiences can enjoy the effortless humor and
dazzling neoclassicism that have shot McIntyre's work onto diverse stages
here and abroad. (His winning personality and good looks have been noted
nearly as much as his choreographic talent: People Magazine, for instance,
named him one of the Most Eligible Bachelors for 2003).
McIntyre's program includes a shimmering abstract contemporary ballet called
Just to music by Henry Cowell; the breezy Brazilian hit originally made for
Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Like a Samba; and the complete version of his tour de
force rumination on mortality, Go Out, danced to bluegrass tunes. (A
ten-minute version of Go Out was seen at the Pillow last season.)
McIntyre's company is a collective of dancers he's most enjoyed directing
while on his freelance commissions. Well-equipped to tear through his often
fiendish choreography with ease , the dancers are drawn from a number of
leading companies that now feature his works, among them, Oregon Ballet
Theatre, Houston Ballet, and American Ballet Theatre. This unique method of
assembling a company rewards audiences with stellar dancers who share a
unique affinity with McIntyre's work. He's picked the best of the best.
For a glimpse of McIntyre's choreography, watch the 2006 season overview
video at www.jacobspillow.org
Performance and Ticket Information for Trey McIntyre Project: Evening
performances are Wednesday, August 2 through Saturday, August 5 at 8pm, with
matinées on Saturday, August 5 and Sunday, August 6 at 2pm. Tickets are $45
each, with a 10% discount available for seniors, students, and youth age 13
and under. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Box Office at
413.243.0745, faxing orders to 413.243.0749, or ordering online at
. Jacob's Pillow is located on George Carter Road in
Becket, MA, 10 minutes east on Route 20 from Mass Pike Exit 2.
Just premiered early this year at Oregon Ballet Theatre, a Portland-based
group for which McIntyre was once the resident choreographer, now directed
by the sharp-eyed Christopher Stowell. (Rounding out the connections,
Stowell is the son of Kent Stowell and Francia Russell, the former directors
of Pacific Northwest Ballet, which appears in the Ted Shawn Theatre August
16-20 as part of the Pillow's attention this summer to the diversity of
American ballet.) A quartet set to Henry Cowell's mid-1950s trio "Set of
Five for Violin, Piano and Percussion," McIntyre has noted that the abstract
movement he's created is his purely visual rejoinder to the pioneering West
Coast composer's exotic melodies and intricate, eccentric tiers of sound.
In the Portland Tribune, writer Eric Bartels called the work "stunning" and
reported that the audience was "dazzled. . . Everything about the world
premiere works brilliantly, from a striking Henry Cowell score to the
precise power of dancers Artur Sultanov, Alison Roper, Jon Drake and Anne
Mueller, to Michael Mazzola's breathtaking lighting design-a masterpiece."
To another round of glowing responses, McIntyre made Like a Samba (which,
true to its title, is set to standards of bossa nova, the offspring of
samba, by Antonio Carlos Jobim, and sung by the definitive Astrud Gilberto),
for Aspen Santa Fe Ballet in 1997. Two years later, Jennifer Dunning wrote
in The New York Times of Oregon Ballet Theatre's performance of the work,
that McIntyre is "a whiz at getting dancers on, off and across the stage in
fluid, surprising ways. . . Like a Samba spools out like silk. Dressed in
white summer casuals, the five insouciant performers look like ballroom
dancers, though the odd but exquisite lifts and flow of the piece could be
achieved only by a ballet choreographer. One highlight was a tricky solo. .
. filled with turn-on-a-dime shifts from tethered flight to dogged returns
and back again, amusingly accented by nonplussed pauses. Another was Mr.
McIntyre's witty response to 'The Girl from Ipanema,' with Ms. Roper sexy
and hilariously impassive in the title role."
Pillow audiences last year were the first on the East Coast to see a
tantalizing excerpt from Go Out-since then, from the seed that powerhouse
duet, McIntyre has expanded the work to show off the entire ensemble,
including more songs by Ralph Stanley and John Hartford, whose plaintive,
folksy power is most widely known from the movie O Brother, Where Art Thou?
McIntyre says that the new piece is a collection of stories examining "the
lives of people in the South and Great Plains and how their ideas of God,
religion, death, and superstition are shaped not only by their unique
surroundings, but by the primitive instinct that lies within all of us."
Born in Wichita, Kansas, McIntyre studied at the North Carolina School of
the Arts and, while making his first forays into choreography, performed
with Houston Ballet. In 1990, at twenty years old and bearing the
newly-created title of Choreographic Apprentice, he created his first work
for Houston Ballet, Skeleton Clock. Four years later, having made several
other pieces for Houston Ballet as well as a work for Pacific Northwest
Ballet, McIntyre choreographed Steel and Rain for New York City Ballet as
the recipient of a coveted Diamond Project commission. After the premiere,
Anna Kisselgoff of The New York Times wrote, "McIntyre. . . is obviously a
new face to watch." Soon, McIntyre's works were in demand across the nation
and around the world. He has now made more than sixty ballets for companies
including Oregon Ballet Theatre, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, The Washington
Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and Ballet Memphis. Internationally,
he has made dances for Stuttgart Ballet, Moscow Ballet Theatre, and Chile's
Ballet de Santiago. For his continued work with Oregon Ballet Theatre, The
Oregonian wrote, "Few choreographers anywhere are like him, which may help
to account for why he is catapulting himself around the United States and
Europe on commissions...McIntyre's fluency and expertise at shaping dance
phrases is world-class." In 2004, to wide acclaim, McIntyre choreographed
Pretty Good Year for American Ballet Theatre. Aside from having been named
one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" and one of People's "25 Most Eligible
Bachelors" (both in 2003), McIntyre has received many awards, including two
choreographic fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and a
Choo San Goh Award for Choreography.
Free Events at the Pillow This Week
PillowTalks in Blake's Barn: Wednesday, August 2 at 5pm, three accomplished
dance photographers-Basil Childers, Philip Trager, and Pillow
Photographer-in-Residence Mike van Sleen-come together to talk about their
photographic styles, discuss current projects in America and Europe, and
provide an inside view of the dance photography field. Saturday, August 5
at 4pm brings Karole Armitage, a significant presence on the American dance
scene during the 1980s, who catches up audiences on her current doings since
returning from Europe.
Inside/Out performances at 6:30pm: Wednesday, August 2, Armitage Gone! Dance
makes its Pillow debut in Karole Armitage's fascinating explorations of
ballet's potential. Thursday, August 3, the gifted young Seattleite Zoe
Scofield shows the products of her outlandish imagination and fruitful
collaborations. Janis Brenner & Dancers shows work cited by New York Times
for "free-wheeling motion and rooted emotional intensity," Friday, August 4.
Saturday, August 5, participants of The School's Jazz program show repertory
by Fosse's Chet Walker and others.
Ongoing Free Events include: Ted Shawn First, the first overview exhibition
ever mounted at the Pillow on the Festival's influential founder, in Blake's
Barn; Philip Trager: A Pillow Retrospective, featuring insightful images
from this master of portraiture, in the Ted Shawn Theatre lobby; Basil
Childers, with work from a rising star of the international dance
photography scene, in the Doris Duke Studio Theatre lobby; Picturing Shawn,
a survey of two-dimensional depictions of the man by diverse artists, in the
Reading Room at Blake's Barn; and the latest Highlights of the Collection,
on view in the venerable Bakalar Studio whenever rehearsals and classes are
not in session.
Jacob's Pillow is located in the town of Becket in the Berkshire Hills of
Western Massachusetts. The Pillow was originally the Carter family farm in
the 1700s, and in the 1800s served as a station on the Underground Railroad.
Its pioneering spirit was furthered in 1933, when legendary dancer, teacher,
and choreographer Ted Shawn founded the Festival as a showcase for his
company of Men Dancers and as a home for dance in the U.S.
Jacob's Pillow now encompasses an acclaimed international Festival (the
first and longest-running dance festival in the U.S.), a professional
School, rare and extensive Archives open to the public free of charge, an
Intern Program, year-round Community Programs, and a Creative Development
Residency program. The historic site includes161 acres, 31 buildings, three
unique stages (including the first theater in the U.S. built specifically
for dance), three dance studios, exhibition spaces, restaurants, the Pillow
Store, residential housing, administrative offices, a health center,
gardens, trails, and woodlands.
The Pillow presents dance from all over the world in all forms, styles, and
traditions, plus approximately 200 free events each season, including
performances, lectures, tours, film showings, exhibits, and talks with
artists from all over the world, which attract approximately 80,000 visitors
Pillow Founder Ted Shawn was instrumental in beginning the careers of Martha
Graham and Jack Cole, and the Pillow has continued this mentoring role by
providing early opportunities to artists such as Alvin Ailey, José Limón,
and Mark Morris. Companies such as Dance Theatre of Harlem and the Parsons
Dance Company have been seen at the Pillow for the first time anywhere, and
international groups such as The Royal Danish Ballet and Nederlands Dans
Theater have made their U.S. debuts here. World premieres have been
commissioned from masters such as Merce Cunningham and Paul Taylor, and
legendary artists such as Margot Fonteyn and Mikhail Baryshnikov have been
showcased in new works.
In 2003, Jacob's Pillow was declared a National Historic Landmark by the
federal government as "an exceptional cultural venue that holds value for
all Americans." It is the first and only dance entity in the U.S. to
achieve this honor. The Pillow looks forward to celebrating its 75th
anniversary in 2007, and has launched its first endowment campaign, The Fund
for Jacob's Pillow, to help ensure its eminence and longevity for others to
enjoy in years to come.
Major support for Jacob's Pillow, as of April 2006, has been provided by:
The Dana Foundation; The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation; Francis Alexander
Family Fund; The Harkness Foundation for Dance; The William and Flora
Hewlett Foundation; The Leir Charitable Trusts in memory of Henry J. Leir;
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Mertz Gilmore Foundation; Evelyn Stefansson
Nef Foundation; The William J. and Dorothy K. O'Neill Foundation; The
Prospect Hill Foundation; The Ira M. Resnick Foundation; The Ridgefield
Foundation; The Shubert Foundation, Inc.; The Starr Foundation;
Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency; National Endowment for the
Arts; U.S. Department of Education; ALEX®; Altria Group, Inc.; American
Express Philanthropic Program, Ameriprise Financial, Inc.; Berkshire Bank
Foundation; Canon, U.S.A., Inc.; TD Banknorth Charitable Foundation; The
Pillow Business Alliance; and Jacob's Pillow Members.
Jacob's Pillow is funded in part by the National Dance Project of the New
England Foundation for the Arts, with lead funding from Doris Duke
Charitable Foundation. Additional funding provided by The Ford Foundation
and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Major endowment support is provided by The Barrington Foundation, Inc.; The
William Randolph Hearst Foundation; Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state
agency; The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Onota Foundation; The Prospect Hill
Foundation; and the Talented Students in the Arts Initiative, a
collaboration of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Surdna
Foundation; and Jacob's Pillow Members.