Friday, 17 January 2014 14:04

Martha Graham Dance Company Leaps Onto SPAC Stage On June 12

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Two iconic Martha Graham works each marking major anniversaries in 2014 will share the bill for a June 12 program at Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC.) Appalachian Spring, created jointly by Graham and composer Aaron Copland in 1944 and The Rite of Spring, created in 1984, will each have their SPAC debut when the Martha Graham Dance Company returns to SPAC for a one-night-only engagement. The two classics will be joined by a third to-be-announced new work from the company¹s spring season in New York. Appalachian Spring, which marks its 70th anniversary this year, was created in collaboration with composer Aaron Copland for a premiere at the Library of Congress. Choreographed as the war in Europe was drawing to an end, it captured the imagination of Americans who were beginning to believe in a more prosperous future. With its simple tale of a new life in a new land, the dance embodied the hope of the time. Copland¹s score for Appalachian Spring earned the composer a Pulitzer Prize and has since become one of the most beloved, inspiring and symbolic works of the twentieth century. Forty years later when Graham was 90 years old, she presented the world premiere of her Rite of Spring at the New York State Theater at Lincoln Center to a standing ovation. Choreography for the work was revived last year after a 20-year absence in commemoration of the centennial of Stravinsky¹s famous score. The restaged Rite features new costumes inspired by the originals that were created by fashion designer Halston for the 1984 premiere as well as a new digital set design. Graham¹s Rite of Spring celebrates its thirtieth anniversary with the 2014 season. Known as one of the great dance companies of the world, the Martha Graham Dance Company is the oldest contemporary dance company in America and one of its most celebrated. They last performed at SPAC in 2008. The June 12 performance will serve as the kick-off to Saratoga Arts Fest 2014. Tickets for this performance and the 2014 classical season will go on sale to SPAC members in late February and to the general public in mid-March. More information is available at
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