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Friday, August 26, 2016

BAM Online Study Guides: A Partnership with
The Frederick Loewe Foundation

This past school year, with the support of The Frederick Loewe FoundationBAM Education launched BAM Online Study Guides, a new resource designed to deepen our engagement with the 15,000 students who attend our school-time performances and screenings each year. Developed with guidance from New York City teachers of all grade levels, BAM’s Online Study Guides empower students to make profound connections between BAM’s artistic work—including Next Wave, Winter/Spring, BAMkids, and cinematic presentations—and what they learn in the classroom. They incorporate BAM’s unparalleled artistic resources, from video clips to step-by-step enrichment activities that link themes and content with academic goals in literature, history, social studies, reading, writing, public speaking, and more.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

From Olympics to Neither

Neither. Photo: Stephanie Berger
By David Hsieh 

In 2002, just two years after Shen Wei founded Shen Wei Dance Arts, Anna Kisselgoff wrote in The New York Times: “If there is something to write home about in the dance world, it is the startlingly imaginative work of the Chinese-born choreographer Shen Wei.”

The verdict was prescient. As a dancer and choreographer, Shen Wei has performed on the world’s greatest stages and museums, including one of the biggest—the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, when he choreographed the segment called “Scroll” for the opening ceremony. With a single “qin” (an ancient Chinese plucked string instrument) providing the lean, spare music, a dozen dancers moved on a giant sheet of cotton paper laid at the center of Beijing National Stadium “Bird’s Nest.” As they spun and twisted, their paint-soaked sleeves marked the paper—mysterious until the end, when a giant Chinese landscape emerged.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Tragedy, Power, and Catharsis: Ivo van Hove's Theatrical Humanism

Ivo van Hove's Kings of War. Photo: Jan Versweyveld
By Christian Barclay

For director Ivo van Hove, 2015-16 was a banner theater season. He made his Broadway debut in late 2015 with a hyper-minimalist staging of Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge, cementing his status as one of contemporary theater’s most distinctive directorial voices. New York Times theater critic Ben Brantley wrote: “This must be what Greek tragedy once felt like, when people went to the theater in search of catharsis.” Van Hove soon followed with Lazarus, at New York Theater Workshop, a collaboration with Irish playwright Enda Walsh and David Bowie, and The Crucible, also a hit on Broadway, with an ensemble cast including Saoirse Ronan and Ben Whishaw. Call it a coincidence of good timing; the Belgian director was now suddenly a formidable presence in the theater capturing the notice of even the most casual theatergoers.