Duo Concertant

Choreography by George Balanchine
Staged by Ben Huys
Music by Igor Stravinsky

Timing: 17:00

Stravinsky dedicated Duo Concertant to Samuel Dushkin, a well-known violinist he met in 1931. The composer premiered the work with Dushkin in Berlin in 1932 and the pair gave recitals together across Europe for the next several years. The piece had long been a favorite of George Balanchine’s, who had first heard it performed by Stravinsky and Dushkin soon after it was composed. However, it was not until years later, when he was planning the 1972 Stravinsky Festival, that he decided to set a ballet to this music.

The performance of the musicians on the stage is integral to the conception of the ballet. Standing at the piano with the musicians, the dancers listen to the first movement. During the next three movements, they dance, mirroring the music and each other, and pause several times to rejoin the musicians and to listen. In the final movement, the stage is darkened and the dancers perform within individual circles of light.

Duo Concertant was given its World Premiere by New York City Ballet at the New York State Theater as part of the Stravinsky Festival on June 22, 1972, danced by Kay Mazzo and Peter Martins.

Source: New York City Ballet website

Duo Concertant was given its American Ballet Theatre Company Premiere on January 18, 2011 at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., danced by Paloma Herrera and Cory Stearns.

Performances of Duo Concertant, a Balanchine Ballet, are presented by arrangement with The George Balanchine Trust and have been produced in accordance with Balanchine Style® and Balanchine Technique® Service standards established and provided by the Trust.

Copyright 2011 Ballet Theatre Foundation, Inc.
All rights reserved.