The Season in Classical & Dance

Works & Process
The highlights of this year’s Guggenheim’s genius series: Choreographer Brian Reeder discusses his latest work, which calls for costumes by Project Runway runner-up Jillian Lewis, who sits in; downtown new-music king John Zorn presents Shir Ha-Shirim, his setting of the erotic “Song of Songs” (plus a dance work); and a newly commissioned score by Nico Muhly will be presented alongside the composer’s favored early music. Guggenheim Museum; 9/8 through 12/22.

So Percussion joins with members of Alarm Will Sound, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and Gutbucket, among others, to form the city’s first new-music supergroup. They’ll tackle a favorite subject—Steve Reich—performing his Music for 18 Musicians and the recent You Are (Variations). (Le) Poisson Rouge; 9/13–14.

San Francisco Symphony
It’s almost impossible not to enjoy watching Michael Tilson Thomas, the San Francisco Symphony’s eternally sprightly leader, twirling about the podium, especially in a most American of opening-night programs. This one’s all-Bernstein, with classic songs sung by the excellent baritone Thomas Hampson, plus the suite entitled Fancy Free. Carnegie Hall; 9/24.

Composer Portraits
This season will see a long-delayed portrait of lyrical master Peter Lieberson, showcasing his early inspiration via Stravinsky through his more recent affair with Tibetan Buddhism, and a tribute to the serialist Milton Babbitt, with a complete cycle of his string quartets and a live discussion between Babbitt and James Levine. Miller Theatre; 9/27 and 10/5.

Bill T. Jones's A Quarreling Pair.Photo: Allison Cherry/Courtesy of BAM

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company
The man who made 1890s teenagers rock out in Spring Awakening has made a dance piece out of Jane Bowles’s odd, short puppet play, A Quarreling Pair, about two sisters who argue incessantly, live in a room divided by a piece of string, and occasionally sing strange little songs together. Look for a typically Jonesian mix—campy vaudeville, silhouette play, and minimal, Butoh-esque movement. BAM; 9/30, 10/2–4.

Lar Lubovitch Dance Company
Marking his company’s 40th anniversary, Lubovitch brings his dancers to New York for both a nostalgia trip and a look to the future, with the premiere of his newest piece, Jangle, set to Bartók rhapsodies. Dance Theater Workshop; 9/30–10/4, and City Center; 11/5–9.

American Ballet Theatre
ABT’s always immaculate season will include Paul Taylor’s delightfully retro Company B, which the company dances for the first time, and young gun Jirˇí Kylián’s new Overgrown Path, set to Janácˇek and created as an homage to Antony Tudor. City Center; 10/21–11/2.

Morphoses/ The Wheeldon Company
The irrepressible Christopher Wheeldon’s bill this year includes a new ballet set to Stravinsky with design by Isabel Toledo, plus Wheeldon’s Polyphonia and two new works by up-and-comers Emily Molnar and the Lightfoot León duo. City Center; 10/1–5.

Daniel Bernard Roumain Photo: Paul B. Goode/Courtesy of BAM

DBR (as he prefers to be called) presents Darwin’s Meditation for the People of Lincoln, a lush work using texts by Darwin, Abraham Lincoln, and Obie winner Daniel Beaty, who imagines a conversation between the giants. BAM; 10/29, 10/31, and 11/1.

Maya Beiser’s cello performances are intense tours de force; perhaps that’s why today’s most innovative composers tremble to compose for her. This concert is a tapestry of influences inspired by Spain’s Golden Age and pairs her cello with oud, percussion, and live electronics, playing work by composers from Kayhan Kalhor to Doug Cuomo and Hamza El Din. Zankel Hall; 10/30.

“Music in Exile”
With customary sensitivity, the Museum of Jewish Heritage hosts an intimate chamber-concert series highlighting composers once suppressed by the Nazis. Wagner’s grandson, Gottfried, will speak. Museum of Jewish Heritage; 11/9–13.

La La La Human Steps
What if Swan Lake lost the famed pas de trois of white swans and Sleeping Beauty cut that excruciatingly slow rose dance? This quirky ballet troupe from Montreal, known for its ultramodern, complex choreography and ability to smartly deconstruct typical balletic conventions, goes at those two warhorses in director Edouard Lock’s new Amjad. Imagine a swan prince en pointe. BAM; 11/12–15.

The Season in Classical & Dance