Susan Stroman Ballet Double Feature Returns to NYC Ballet Feb. 18

By Robert Simonson
18 Feb 2005

Susan Stroman
Susan Stroman

Broadway director-choreographer Susan Stroman's first ballet, Double Feature, a hit when it had its premiere at the hands of the New York City Ballet on Jan. 23, 2004, will be revived by that company Feb. 18 through Feb. 24.

"They'll do seven performances," Stroman previously told Playbill.com. Asked whether the ballet might be mounted for a long run in the future, Stroman laughed. "As much as I'd like that, I don't know if I could get the company to get up on point that often! It's quite a task. I just adored working with that company. We've talked about doing another piece, but my schedule's rather full."

Titled Double Feature, the work draws on music from two Broadway composers from the first part of the 20th century, Irving Berlin and Walter Donaldson. Among the songs used are "Let Yourself Go" and "Blue Skies" by Berlin and "Makin' Whoopee" and "My Blue Heaven" by Donaldson. The full length, two-act ballet is inspired by the silent-movie era.

By venturing into the world of ballet, Stroman is following in the footsteps of such past choreographers as Jerome Robbins and NYCB's own co-founder, George Balanchine, who divided their time between Broadway and ballet. Stroman took strides toward a more balletic style with two recent projects: Oklahoma!, in which she reimagined the musical's famous dream sequence, first created by Agnes DeMille; and Contact, a three-part, conceptual dance piece with only incidental dialogue.

Double Feature is only the seventh full-length ballet in NYCB's history.