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New York, NY (Glass Pieces)

May 19

Sunday, May 19, 2024 11:00 AM

Tickets and info here

Expansive in scope and streamlined in style, Glass Pieces captures the pulsating heartbeat of metropolitan life with its charged, urban choreography, concluding in a finale that propels the corps de ballet across the stage at an electrifying pace.

Although Philip Glass’s work is often labeled as minimalist, he prefers to call it “music with repetitive structures.” His early compositions were greatly influenced by Ravi Shankar and the hypnotic rhythms of Indian music. Some of his most notable work for theater includes the trilogy of operas comprising Einstein on the Beach, Satyagraha, and Akhnaten.

Jerome Robbins, originally in line to direct Akhnaten, instead choreographed a ballet using music from the opera along with Rubric and Facades, both from Glassworks. In Glass Pieces, Robbins incorporated concepts from postmodern dance into the traditional ballet vocabulary, and he infused the work with a distinctly urban energy. The recurrent rhythms, driving momentum, and labyrinth of shifting patterns of the ensemble combine to create a physical architecture for Glass’s music.

24 minutes



Rubric and Façades from Glassworks, excerpts from the opera Akhnaten


May 12, 1983, New York City Ballet, New York State Theater

Original Cast

Heléne Alexopoulos, Peter Frame, Lourdes Lopez, Joseph Duell, Lisa Hess, Victor Castelli, Maria Calegari, Bart Cook


Ben Benson


Jerome Robbins and Ronald Bates (Production Design)


Ronald Bates