The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
By Sarah Hricko, DANCECleveland
Each year, DANCECleveland makes sure to bring the best of the best to Akron, OH for not only a fantastic performance, but a week long residency for The University of Akron’s dance students. The booking process starts long before the curtain opens. This year, DANCECleveland snatched up BalletX to perform at E.J. Thomas Hall, early on in the presenting season, confident that this young contemporary ballet company out of Philadelphia would not disappoint. After a sold out, intimate floor seating performance, and an exuberant standing ovation from the audience, DANCECleveland knew BalletX was exactly the right kick off for the 2013 dance series.
While all three works performed by BalletX were enjoyed by the Akron audience members, it was The Last Glass, the last piece on the program, which was regarded by many as their favorite. Choreographed by Artistic Director Mathew Neenan and performed to music by the Indie Band, Beirut, The Last Glass gave realistic emotion amidst the unrealistic and magical movements of the dancers. It was the same piece that impressed audiences at New York City’s Joyce Theatre just two months earlier.
Now as the year comes to an end, reviews of the best dance performances are being published across the county. To no surprise, BalletX’s The Last Glass was proudly named on New York Times dance critic, Alastair Macaulay's, 2013 Dance Favorites List! This prestigious accomplishment for such a young company proves that BalletX has great things ahead and how lucky we are that DANCECleveland was able to bring them to Akron for a phenomenal performance that has been recognized by some of the most highly regarded critics. Whoever said you can only see the best dance in New York City must not have stopped in Akron! Hopefully in the future we will have “another glass” of BalletX in Akron.