A, C, E at 14th St.; 1 at 18th St.; L at Eighth Ave.
|2/28, 3/01||Ronald K. Brown/Evidence|
Choreographer Eliot Feld and arts executive Cora Cahan founded the Joyce Theater in 1982 because they felt that the city needed an intimate, egalitarian space in which to showcase contemporary dance. Architect Hugh Hardy's renovations of the former Elgin Theater retained the movie house's marquee and Art Deco feel but transformed the interior into a 472-seat theater with a sprung stage, two shallow side balconies, and a purple-and-teal color scheme that still evokes the eighties. Jazz-inspired tap-dancing and flamenco are programmed alongside ballet, and some acts—modern-dance company Pilobolus, for example—are theater as much as dance. A commitment to low ticket prices looks to entice younger audiences, not always successfully. Although the theater's small size and lack of a proper backstage put constraints on choreographers, designers, and most noticeably, accompanists, the Joyce's international roster has positioned it as Chelsea's homey alternative to Lincoln Center.Sister Space
The Joyce Soho, which opened in 1996 in a former Dia Art Foundation building, contains three studios of subsidized rental space, one of which converts to a white-box theater. The focus here is on new and emerging choreographers.