New York City Center’s 15th Annual Fall For Dance Festival

by Michael Mahany | 10/10/2018 4:02 AM


Justin Peck and Patricia Delgado’s premiere “Sleep Well Beast”. Photo Credit: Ezra Hurwitz


Beginning October 1st and running through October 15, New York City Center celebrates the 15th Anniversary of its beloved Fall For Dance Festival.


Since 2013, the program, which draws thousands of loyal New York City dance fans, commissions a number of new works to be premiered at the festival, and among this season’s bevy of exciting content for dance fans, it includes six such premieres. Patricia Delgado and New York City Ballet, TONY® Winner, and recently announced choreographer of the film remake of West Side Story, Justin Peck will introduce audiences to a new piece called Sleep Well Beast, and Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Annabelle Lopez Ochoa will premiere her new piece, Balamouk. 


Other premieres include tap dance star Caleb Teicher & Company’s piece called Bzzz, Royal Ballet and ABT dancer Gemma Bond’s piece titled Inner Voices, and Sonya Tayeh and Heather Christian’s Reclamation Map.


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Most exciting to many dance fans is the premiere of Petrushka, created by choreographer Jennifer Weber. The piece will feature New York City Ballet star and recent Dancing With The Stars performer Tiler Peck, hiphop celeb Lil Buck, and a guest performer yet to be named.



Fall For Dance, which began in 2004, has been an enormous success for New York City Center, and has drawn over 300,000 audience members since it’s initial incarnation. The subsidized tickets the program features, offers patrons entrance to the show for, “the price of a movie ticket” and has introduced countless New York dance superstars and international icons to its viewers.


Each night of the festival will feature a line-up of one of five program options*. These different programs space out the world premieres and feature additional pieces and performances by well known and and respectable performers and companies.


Attendees can also expect to see performances from Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Paul Taylor Dance Company’s setting of Promethean Fire, Boston Ballet’s New York debut of Bach Cello Suites, a piece choreographed by Ballet Hispanico’s Michelle Manzanales, and a Sara 

Mearns performance of Dances of Isadora Duncan—A Solo Tribute, staged by Lori Belilove.



Sara Mearns. Photo Credit: Sarah Sterner.


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On most nights of the festival, attendees are invited to take a free dance class from a featured performer. Guest teachers include performers from Paul Taylor Dance Company, Dance Theatre of Harlem, and Ballet Hispánico.


RELATED INTERVIEW: Ballet Hispánico’s Joshua Winzeler


New York City Center itself, also happens to be celebrating is 75th year, after it was founded in 1943 by Mayor Fiorello La Guardia with the intention of providing access to the performing arts to all. The program that, along with Fall For Dance, features City Center Encores!, which breathes new life into old musicals, and provides a home for Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre and Manhattan Theatre Club.


For more information on performances, dance classes, or tickets to Fall For Dance, visit New York City Center’s page, here.


*Program Options


Program 1—Mon Oct 1 & Tue Oct 2


Boston Ballet  Bach Cello Suites* (NY Premiere)  Jorma Elo 

Sara Mearns  Dances of Isadora Duncan—A Solo Tribute  Lori Belilove, after Isadora Duncan

Caleb Teicher & Company Bzzz, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere)  Caleb Teicher 

Cie Hervé KOUBI  The Barbarian Nights*  Hervé Koubi


Program 2—Wed Oct 3 & Thu Oct 4


Pam Tanowitz Dance  New Work for Goldberg Variations* Pam Tanowitz 

Justin Peck & Patricia Delgado  Sleep Well Beast, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere)  Justin Peck

Gemma Bond Dance  Inner Voices, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere) Gemma Bond

Paul Taylor Dance Company  Promethean Fire  Paul Taylor


Program 3—Fri Oct 5 & Sat Oct 6


Tayeh Dance with Heather Christian  Reclamation Map, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere)  Sonya Tayeh 

Dance Theatre of Harlem  Balamouk, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere)  Annabelle Lopez Ochoa 

Nederlands Dans Theater 2  Midnight Raga (US Premiere)  Marco Goecke 

National Ballet of China  The Crane Calling* (US Premiere)  Ma Cong & Zhang Zhenxin


Program 4—Wed Oct 10 & Thu Oct 11


Herman Cornejo & Alina Cojocaru  Excerpts from Rhapsody  Frederick Ashton

INTRODANS  Canto Ostinato  Lucinda Childs 

Tiler Peck, Lil Buck & Guest Artist TBA  Petrushka, New York City Center Commission (World Premiere)  Jennifer Weber 

Rennie Harris Puremovement - American Street Dance Theater  Rennie Harris Funkedified*  Rennie Harris


Program 5—Fri Oct 12 & Sat Oct 13


Ballet Hispánico  Con Brazos Abiertos  Michelle Manzanales 

Junior Cervila & Guadalupe Garcia  TANGOS  Junior Cervila & Guadalupe Garcia  

Acosta Danza  El Cruce sobre el Niágara Marianela Boán

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater  Stack-Up  Talley Beatty


Michael Mahany is a writer, host, actor, and serves as the New York City Correspondent for Dance Network. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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