10 Dance Performances to See in December & January
By JUAN MICHAEL PORTER II
Friday, December 03, 2021  •  
Fri Dec 3, 2021  •  
Dance  •   0 comments Share This

Catch innovative companies at The Joyce, New York City Ballet's winter season, holiday spectacles and more

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NYC's winter dance season always brings a nonstop march of Nutcrackers. But there are also other dance performances to enjoy over the holidays and beyond as we twirl into 2022. Unless otherwise indicated, proof of full COVID-19 vaccination and masks are required. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to see what we're selling as ticket inventory changes frequently.

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Parsons Dance

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Runs through December 12. If you're a TDF member, log in to your account to purchase discount tickets.

NYC's venerable Parsons Dance returns to The Joyce with classic works like Caught alongside five premieres, including three by the troupe's namesake choreographer, David Parsons: The Road set to Cat Stevens' songs, the solo Balance of Power created for company member Zoey Anderson and Side Effects danced to an electronic score by David Cloobeck.

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Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Runs December 14-January 2, 2022. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 breakthrough infections, the run ended early. 

Lovingly known as "The Trocks," this all-male ballet troupe returns for its biennial holiday run at The Joyce Theater. Long before it was safe to be out, gay and proud, these talented men were wowing audiences by dancing en pointe in drag. While they deliver hilarious send-ups of classics, there's superb technique supporting their satire. Expect virtuoso high jinks as they parody Swan Lake, Les Sylphides and Jerome Robbins' In the Night with their latest creation Nightcrawlers set to Chopin nocturnes.

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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

New York City Center, 131 West 55th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues in Midtown West

Runs through December 19. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 breakthrough infections, the run ended early. 

New York City Center welcomes back this superb company for its annual three-week holiday run. Highlights include the Wynton Marsalis-scored For Four, a premiere by Robert Battle who's marking 10 years as the troupe's artistic director; and the on-stage debut of Holding Space, a piece by Jamar Roberts that was done virtually during the pandemic. Speaking of Roberts, on December 9, the star dancer is giving a one-night-only farewell performance in his solo You Are the Golden Hour That Would Soon Evanesce, though he will remain as the troupe's resident choreographer. The program also includes classics by Ailey such as Cry, his tribute to Black women and, of course, his enduring masterpiece Revelations.

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Christmas Spectacular Starring The Radio City Rockettes

1260 Sixth Avenue at 50th Street in Midtown West

Runs through January 2, 2022. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 breakthrough infections, the run ended early. 

Note: Masks are not required for fully vaccinated audiences.

Returning after last year's pandemic-induced hiatus, this landmark production is as popular as ever, dazzling NYC natives and tourists alike with its falling soldiers, Living Nativity and incredible virtual tour of Midtown. Despite an array of new stunts and special effects, the world-famous Rockettes remain the show's raison d'être. Yes, they've been dancing in the extravaganza since 1933. Yet all the high-tech innovations can't hold a Christmas candle to their synchronized high kicks.

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New York City Ballet: George Balanchine's The Nutcracker

David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, 20 Lincoln Center Plaza at 62nd Street and Columbus Avenue in Lincoln Square

Runs through January 2, 2022. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 breakthrough infections, the run ended early. 

There are a multitude of Nutcrackers to see this season. But George Balanchine's version, which premiered in 1954, is what turned this Christmas ballet into a seasonal staple across the United States. After a pandemic hiatus, New York City Ballet's iconic mounting is back on stage at Lincoln Center with its stunning sets and costumes, massive Christmas tree and dozens of delightful dancers moving to Tchaikovsky's glorious score. There are a few changes this year: Due to vaccines not being available for young children when rehearsals started, all kids involved are ages 12 and up and there are brand-new outfits for the party scene. If you're unable to make the in-person engagement, here's a holiday treat: You can stream the troupe's 2019 mounting at home for just $20 thanks to Marquee TV.

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Ayodele Casel: Chasing Magic

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Canceled due to COVID-19.

Ayodele Casel is a tap dancer on the move. The first woman member of Savion Glover's Not Your Ordinary Tappers troupe, she's poised to make her Broadway debut as the tap choreographer for the upcoming revival of Funny Girl. But before she makes that leap, you can catch her in action at The Joyce with her Bessie Award-winning production of Chasing Magic. Directed by her longtime collaborator Torya Beard, this evening of works is infused with Afro-Latin rhythms brought to life by Casel and six tappers backed by live musicians, including singer-songwriter Crystal Monee Hall.

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American Dance Platform

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Canceled due to COVID-19.

For one jam-packed week, The Joyce is offering audiences a chance to sample work by six innovative dance companies as part of the sixth annual American Dance Platform. This year's lineup features pieces by Denver's Cleo Parker Robinson Dance and Memphis' Collage Dance Collective on January 11 and 16; Robert Moses' KIN from San Francisco and NYC's Complexions Contemporary Ballet on January 12 and 15; and the TL Collective and DIAVOLO, both from Los Angeles, on January 13 and 14.

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Malpaso Dance Company

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Canceled due to COVID-19.

Cuba is well known for training spectacular ballerinas, but the country also has an incredible crop of modern masters in Malpaso Dance Company. These ferociously talented dancers return to The Joyce with an eclectic program of contemporary works by Mats Ek, Robyn Mineko Williams, a new commission from Aszure Barton and the exciting solo Nana Para un Insomnio (Lullaby for Insomnia) created by the dazzling Dailedys Carrazana, a longtime company member.

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Soledad Barrio & Noche Flamenca

The Joyce Theater, 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street in Chelsea

Canceled due to COVID-19.

Flamenco lovers have long known that Soledad Barrio is a world treasure. As a performer and choreographer, she is so powerfully charismatic, even her smallest gestures stir your soul. She returns to The Joyce alongside her magnificent ensemble of singers, guitarists and dancers with a new program developed during the pandemic, a celebration of reconnection. It's sure to be a grand evening.

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New York City Ballet: Winter Season

David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, 20 Lincoln Center Plaza at 62nd Street and Columbus Avenue in Lincoln Square

Runs January 27-February 27.

No rest for New York City Ballet! Just a few weeks after The Nutcracker concludes, the company leaps into its six-week winter season. Highlights include a six-performance run of Swan Lake; world premieres by Justin Peck and Jamar Roberts; principal Gonzalo Garcia's farewell performance; and beloved works by Balanchine and Robbins such as Walpurgisnacht Ballet and Slaughter on Tenth Avenue.

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Juan Michael Porter II is the staff writer for TheBody.com and a contributor to TDF Stages, Did They Like It?, SF Chronicle, Christian Science Monitor, American Theatre, them, Into More and SYFY Wire. He is a National Critics Institute and Poynter Power of Diverse Voices Fellow. Follow him at @juanmichaelii. Follow TDF at @ TDFNYC.

Top image: Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo in the troupe's parody of Swan Lake. Photo by Lois Greenfield.




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