Watching Dance Watching Dance

Watching Dance


Heather Watts, Moderator

In conjunction with the vibrant 2019 New York City fall dance season, Balanchine ballerina Heather Watts leads a lively discussion of the ballets being featured at New York City Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. This Seminar will examine an exciting range of repertory through the lens of music, dance structure, historical context, as well as how we observe ballet today. Starting with a look at ballet class and technique, we will then move on to repertory and the stars of past and present who illuminate the field. Video will be used.

Session 1 Ballet Technique: Class, rehearsals, and coaching.
Session 2 Jewels (1965): Balanchine’s Emeralds, Rubies and Diamonds, which was the first full length abstract ballet, is flourishing today. What are the historical and geographical significance of Balanchine’s musical choices of Fauré, Stravinsky, and Tchaikovsky?
Session 3 The Revolution of Ballet by George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins at NYCB
Session 4 Ballerinas We Revere, Then and Now
Session 5 The Voices of Today: Alexei Ratmansky, Resident Choreographer at American Ballet Theater, and Justin Peck, Resident Choreographer at New York City Ballet.
Session 6 Finale: Class Selections

TUESDAYS, 2 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.

OCT   22
NOV  5, 19, 26
DEC  10

Cost $475 (6 sessions)
* tax deductible portion is $237.50

Heather Watts

HEATHER WATTS joined New York City Ballet in 1970 and was one of the last of the famed Balanchine Ballerinas. Watts worked closely with George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins at NYCB, and was an acclaimed international ballet star retiring from the stage in 1995. Watts is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair magazine. She has created academic courses on Balanchine’s life and work at Harvard University, was the Visiting Lecturer in Dance at Princeton University in 2012. She was an inaugural fellow at the Institute of Ballet, NYU in 2014. Watts received a Doctorate in Fine Arts honoris causa from Hunter College.

Portrait Photo: Inez and Vinoodh                                                                     Photo Credit: Everett Collection