News
Sara Mearns giving her acceptance speech at The Bessies on October 8. Photo by AK47 Division, Courtesy The Bessies.

Imagine The Oscars, but for dance. Sound too good to be true? The New York Dance & Performance Awards, commonly known as The Bessies, are about as close as the dance world gets to award show glamour. October 8 marked the 2018 Bessies, the one night of the year when members of the New York City dance community spanning genres and generations came together to acknowledge outstanding artists in the field. While The Bessies usually focus on independent or downtown dance artists rather than ballet (the last members of the ballet world to win awards were Justin Peck, Alexei Ratmansky and Amar Ramasar in 2015), one of the four 2018 Outstanding Performer awards went to New York City Ballet principal Sara Mearns for her sustained achievement with NYCB and accomplishments in works by Isadora Duncan, Jodi Melnick, Wang Ramirez and Matthew Bourne over the past year.

Keep reading... Show less
Sara Mearns with Raushan Mitchell and Jodi Melnick at Dancespace Project. Photo Courtesy Melncik.

The best artists never stop exploring. Lately, world-class ballet dancers have been pushing their limits with new styles and collaborators from outside the classical ballet world. There was Wendy Whelan's Restless Creature project. There's Natalia Osipova and Sergei Polunin, who are performing a program of contemporary work at New York City Center this week. And there are the many ballet dancers dazzling audiences on Broadway stages, in shows like On the Town, An American in Paris and CATS.

The latest ballerina to embark on an out-of-the-box collaboration is New York City Ballet's Sara Mearns. Last fall, she approached choreographer and dancer Jodi Melnick, a legend of New York's downtown dance scene, about working together. The two had originally met at Dancespace Project's “Platform 2015: Dancers, Buildings and People in the Streets," a project that brought NYCB dancers and downtown contemporary dancers together.

Keep reading... Show less

mailbox

Get Pointe Magazine in your inbox