Clare Croft, SF Ballet’s 2019 Visiting Scholar, on American Ballet

Join SF Ballet’s 2019 Visiting Scholar Clare Croft, PhD for a talk on “What makes a ballet “American?”

Several works on Programs 5 and 6 beg the question, what makes a ballet “American?” Trey McIntyre’s Your Flesh Shall be a Great Poem draws its title from famous American poet Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass and McIntyre’s memories of his grandfather, a man he describes as “just so American.” On Program 6, Justin Peck re-imagines one of the most iconic of Americana ballet’s, Rodeo: Four Dance Episodes—with the open, expansive sound of Aaron Copland’s music. In our contemporary moment, what—and who—is American is a polarizing, too often violent debate. How might ballet help us imagine “American” as an identity that can be reimagined and inhabited by many?

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Header image: Isabella DeVivo and Steven Morse in McIntyre’s Your Flesh Shall Be a Great Poem // © Erik Tomasson

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