“Dancing is music made visible.”
― George Balanchine
I heard this quote recently and was immediately struck by it. Of all the ways to make music a visual art, which is more obvious than this? The renowned choreographer, George Balanchine (1904-1983), naturally placed tremendous importance on his dancers and their dancing. But the music itself took precedence over all. He choreographed to show off the music, to give it new meaning, to make the audience think and wonder. The best way to experience this is not to read, but to watch. I’ve posted below a few videos of interviews and performance clips from the New York City Ballet. I hope you’ll seek more, and discover the ways Balanchine and other choreographers use dance to explore music!
The first video on this page is of an interview with a dancer performing a Balanchine work. She speaks to Balanchine’s skill at bringing the music to the forefront of his choreography, and the dancing in the video serves to prove her point.
The first video on this page show interviews with three principals in a performance of Balanchine’s Jewels. Their insight is interesting, and the clips give you a flavor of each of the movements.
This video has an interview with the principal dancer for Balanchine’s Serenade, the first piece he choreographed. Tchaikovsky’s music is beautiful, and the choreography snippets made me want to see the piece live!