- Opening Night Cabaret with Anthony Roth Costanzo
- New dance commissions by Ephrat Asherie and Omari Wiles
- Theatrical first looks at Company, West Side Story, and Ocean Filibuster
- Opera sneak peek with Lincoln Center Theater’s Intimate Apparel, The Metropolitan Opera’s Agrippina, and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis’s Awakenings
- Dance previews featuring BalletX and Pennsylvania Ballet
Works & Process at the Guggenheim is pleased to announce its spring 2020 season. Since 1984, the performing arts series has championed new works and offered audiences unprecedented access to leading creators. The intimate Frank Lloyd Wright –designed Peter B. Lewis Theater is the venue for these seventy-minute programs that explore the creative process through stimulating discussions and riveting performance highlights. One-of-a-kind productions created for the Guggenheim’s rotunda offer a unique experience of the landmark museum. Additional information is available at worksandprocess.org.
Audience members are invited to artist receptions in the rotunda following most evening programs. Prior to performances, The Wright restaurant is open with a cash bar from 5:30 to 7:30 pm.
Works & Process lead funding is provided by the Ford Foundation, Florence Gould Foundation, the Christian Humann Foundation, Mertz Gilmore Foundation, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and Evelyn Sharp Foundation, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Spring 2020 Season
OPENING NIGHT CABARET
Anthony Roth Costanzo, January 6, 2020, 7:30 pm
Before he was an opera singer, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo (Akhnaten and Glass Handel) was a Broadway baby moving from community theater to national tours, and eventually to the Great White Way. Now, Costanzo is looking back to go forward. For one night only, in the New York premiere of his cabaret, he revisits his childhood, drawing on the leading ladies, crooners, and icons that helped form him. And, in a twist, he finds just enough low to balance out his highs. Developed with the Bearded Ladies Cabaret, on the occasion of Opera Philadelphia’s Festival O19. Directed by John Jarboe. Musical arrangements by Heath Allen. Scenic design by Machine Dazzle.
Opening Night Chairs: Joanna Fisher, Bart Friedman, Andrew J. Martin-Weber, and Anh-Tuyet Nguyen
- 6:30 pm Reception in Rotunda
- 7:30 pm Performance in the Peter B. Lewis Theater
- 9 pm Dinner at The Wright
- $500 Prime Seating and Artist Dinner
- $250 Orchestra
- $150 Dress Circle
- $75 Side View
Countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo began performing professionally at the age of eleven and has since appeared in opera, concert, recital, film, and on Broadway. He has produced operas, installations, concerts, and performance series internationally. Recently, he appeared at the Metropolitan Opera performing the title role in Philip Glass’s Akhnaten, and has performed with many of the world’s other leading opera houses, including Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, the Los Angeles Opera, Houston Grand Opera, the Canadian Opera Company, Glyndebourne Opera Festival, English National Opera, and Teatro Real in Madrid. In concert he has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony, the London Symphony Orchestra, and the Berlin Philharmonic, and at Carnegie Hall, the Elbphilharmonie, and the Kennedy Center. His first album, ARC, was nominated for a Grammy and he received Musical America’s 2019 Vocalist of the Year award.
DANCE COMMISSION PREVIEW
Les Ballet Afrik and Ephrat Asherie Dance, Jan 13 and 14, 2020, 7:30 pm
In 2020, Works & Process commissions and premieres two works by Les Ballet Afrik and Ephrat Asherie Dance.
Having received the honorary status of Legend after 10 years of competing in the Vogue Ballroom scene and performing across the globe, choreographer Omari Wiles brings the ballroom to the Peter B. Lewis Theater at the Guggenheim. With excerpts of New York is Burning, performed by Les Ballet Afrik and guest artists, Wiles presents his signature “AfrikFusion” style, which fuses traditional African dances and Afrobeat styles with House dance and Vogue.
Excerpts from Ephrat Asherie’s UnderScored (working title) are performed by EAD company members with guest artists from New York City’s underground dance scene. Beginning with the legendary parties at The Loft and the Paradise Garage, UnderScored is inspired by intergenerational club-life memories and explores the ever-changing physical landscape of New York City’s underground House dance community.
The Metropolitan Opera, Agrippina by George Frideric Handel
Harry Bicket, Joyce DiDonato, and David McVicar, Jan 20, 2020, 7:30 pm
Before the Met premiere of Agrippina, Handel’s tale of intrigue and impropriety in ancient Rome, general manager Peter Gelb moderates a discussion with director Sir David McVicar, conductor Harry Bicket, and members from the cast. Highlights are performed in advance of the opera’s opening night on February 6.
West Side Story, Ivo van Hove and Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, January 27, 2020, 7:30 pm
When the original production by Jerome Robbins, Arthur Laurents, Leonard Bernstein, and Stephen Sondheim premiered on Broadway in 1957, it changed the face of American musical theater. More than sixty years later, Tony Award winner Ivo van Hove directs a new production that, for the first time ever in the United States, features all-new choreography by the internationally acclaimed Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. Prior to its February 6 opening, audience members are invited behind the scenes as van Hove and De Keersmaeker participate in a moderated discussion and cast members perform highlights.
Company, Marianne Elliott, Feb 3, 2020, 7:30 pm
Two-time Tony Award-winning director Marianne Elliott illuminates the creative process behind her revival of Stephen Sondheim and George Furth’s landmark American musical, Company. On the heels of its Olivier Award-winning, sensational hit run in London’s West End, Company will open on Broadway in a visionary new production featuring a gender-swapped, marriage-shy Bobbie at her 35th birthday party, where all her friends ask: Why isn’t she married? Why can’t she find the right man? Isn’t it time she settles down and starts a family? But Bobbie isn’t sure she’s ready to commit. Before the premiere on March 22, Elliott participates in a moderated discussion and members of the cast perform highlights.
Lincoln Center Theater, Intimate Apparel by Ricky Ian Gordon and Lynn Nottage, Bartlett Sher, Feb 9, 2020. 7:30 pm
The Works & Process audience can go behind the scenes of a new chamber opera based on Lynn Nottage’s popular play Intimate Apparel, with music by Ricky Ian Gordon and a libretto by the playwright, and directed by Bartlett Sher. Set in turn-of-the-century New York, the opera tells the story of Esther, a lonely, single African-American woman who makes her living sewing beautiful corsets and ladies’ undergarments. Seeking love and romance, Esther embarks on a letter-writing relationship with a mysterious suitor laboring on the Panama Canal, and realizes that only her self-reliance and certainty of her own worth will see her through life’s challenges. Dramaturg and Director of the Opera Commissioning Program at The Metropolitan Opera Paul Cremo moderates a discussion with Gordon, Nottage, and Sher and cast members perform highlights, ahead of the opera’s opening performance on February 27.
Intimate Apparel is the first opera produced by Lincoln Center Theater and was developed by LCT and the Metropolitan Opera as part of the Met/LCT New Works Program, which is dedicated to developing new opera and music theater works.
Pennsylvania Ballet, La Bayadère by Angel Corella, Feb 23, 2020. 3 pm and 7:30 pm
Set in the grand temples of mystical India and featuring the doomed temple dancer Nikiya, her rival Gamzatti, and the warrior Solor, La Bayadère has been an epic tale of love and godly revenge since 1877. Prior to its world premiere, Pennsylvania Ballet Artistic Director and former American Ballet Theatre principal dancer Angel Corella discusses his brand-new restaging of the classic ballet with an eye to changing cultural mores. Company dancers perform selections from the program.
DANCE & MUSIC
Joyce Theater Foundation, Swing 2020 by Evita Arce, LaTasha Barnes, Nathan Bugh, Caleb Teicher, and Eyal Vilner, Feb 24, 2020. 7:30 pm
Celebrating the tradition of innovation in America’s partnered dance form, the Lindy Hop, acclaimed choreographer and Dance Magazine cover star Caleb Teicher, along with several Lindy Hop champions, brings the joy, fire, and fight of competitive and social swing dance to the Guggenheim stage. Prior to the August premiere of Swing 2020 at the Joyce Theater, Teicher, his collaborators, Evita Arce, LaTasha Barnes, and Nathan Bugh, and composer Eyal Vilner discuss their creative process. Acclaimed dancers perform stunning improvisations accompanied by Eyal Vilner Big Band.
Les Ballet Afrik, New York is Burning by Omari Wiles, March 29 and 30, 7:30 pm
In 1990, the documentary Paris is Burning was released to critical acclaim. The film chronicled New York City Drag Balls, Ball culture, and Voguing in the 1980s, capturing the elaborately structured Ball competitions and showcasing rival houses. Beyond the Ballroom, each house served as surrogate families for young Ball-walkers who faced rejection from their biological families for their gender expression and sexual orientation. The Voguing that took place at these Balls has entered mainstream culture in the years since, serving as a touch point for a multi-leveled exploration of a queer African-American and Latino subculture. To celebrate the 20th anniversary and to pay homage to Paris is Burning, Omari Wiles, founding father of the House of Oricci, presents New York is Burning, a Works & Process commission made in and for the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed theater at the Guggenheim. Performed by his company, Les Ballet Afrik, New York is Burning will bring the Ballroom to the Guggenheim and feature Wiles’s AfrikFusion, a style that fuses traditional African dances and Afrobeat styles with House dance and Vogue.
In conjunction with these performances, on March 27 Art After Dark at the Guggenheim will feature music by a DJ from the House of Oricci and pop-up dance performances by Les Ballet Afrik.
Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Awakenings by Tobias Picker and Aryeh Lev Stollman, Roberto Kalb and James Robinson, April 5, 2020. 7:30 pm
This opera recounts the fate of the thousands who in the 1920s succumbed to a mysterious sleeping sickness, rendering them immobile and voiceless for more than forty years. Through this time, daughters grew up without their mothers, husbands remarried, and mothers wasted away from grief. Decades later, a brilliant, young doctor, Dr. Oliver Sacks, discovered a revolutionary treatment to bring his patients back to life, though to a world they no longer recognized. Based on Dr. Sacks’s book Awakenings, the opera is a moving tale of memories, loss, and life rediscovered. Prior to its world premiere, composer Tobias Picker, librettist Aryeh Lev Stollman, conductor Roberto Kalb, and Artistic Director of Opera Theatre of Saint Louis and Awakenings stage director, James Robinson, participate in a moderated discussion with performances from original cast members, Joyce El-Khoury, Paul Groves, Jarrett Logan Porter, and David Portillo.
Federal Hall, The Democracy Project by Tanya Barfield, Lisa D’Amour, Larissa FastHorse, Melissa James Gibson, Michael R. Jackson and Bruce Norris
Lynn Goldner, Adam Greenfield, and David Henry Hwang, May 3, 2020. 7:30 pm
The Democracy Project is a perspective-shifting odyssey through the 531 days when New York City was the nation’s first capital; when the presidency was new; the slave trade was in debate; and the U.S. Constitution—and the rights of all America’s inhabitants—hung in the balance. Written by Tanya Barfield, Lisa D’Amour, Larissa FastHorse, Melissa James Gibson, Michael R. Jackson and Bruce Norris, this new play will premiere in 2020 as part of the inaugural program for New Day at Federal Hall. Located at Federal Hall, this effort led by the National Parks of New York Harbor Conservancy brings together the nation’s finest storytellers and scholars, writers and artists, poets, playwrights and pundits. An array of multidisciplinary new works probes the ideas, ideals, flaws, and contradictions of our democracy.
Works & Process invites this award-winning team of theater artists, joined by producer Lynn Goldner, script consultant Adam Greenfield, and playwright David Henry Hwang, to discuss their remarkable collaboration and present performance highlights.
MUSIC & THEATER
American Repertory Theater, Ocean Filibuster by PearlDamour, Lisa D’Amour, Jenn Kidwell, Katie Pearl, and Sxip Shirey, June 8, 2020. 7:30 pm
Inside the Senate chamber of a global governing body, Mr. Majority introduces the “End of Ocean Bill,” designed to shrink Earth’s oceans into a more manageable (and marketable) collection of inland seas and lagoons. When the floor is opened for debate, the Ocean arrives to speak in its own defense, and so begins the Human-Ocean showdown. Ocean Filibuster draws from myth, stand-up, and science to explore the vast depths crucial to our daily survival. Prior to the American Repertory Theater’s world premiere production, writer Lisa D’Amour, director Katie Pearl, and composer Sxip Shirey discuss the newest music theater experience created by the Obie Award-winning company PearlDamour. Actor Jenn Kidwell, who plays both roles, performs highlights.
Commissioned and developed through a partnership between the American Repertory Theater and Harvard University Center for the Environment.
BalletX, Hope Boykin, Rena Butler, Caili Quan, and Penny Saunders June 14, 2020. 3 and 7:30 pm
“This Philadelphia company also has vividly appealing, highly individual dancers. It’s easy to miss how meticulous they are in style—but impossible not to recognize their richness and immediacy.” – The New York Times
BalletX will perform excerpts from their forthcoming Summer Series, featuring choreography by Rena Butler, Caili Quan, and Penny Saunders, as well as a preview of Hope Boykin’s new work, premiering during the company’s 2020 Vail Dance Festival residency. BalletX Artistic and Executive Director Christine Cox joins Boykin, Butler, Quan, and Saunders for a discussion moderated by Julliard President and Vail Dance Festival Artistic Director Damian Woetzel.
Peter B. Lewis Theater, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
1071 Fifth Avenue at 89th Street
Subway: 4, 5, 6, or Q train to 86th Street
Bus: M1, M2, M3, or M4 bus on Madison or Fifth Avenue
Tickets: $45, $40 members (unless otherwise noted). General ticketing starts Dec 17.
$10 TodayTix Lottery and student rush tickets one hour before performance, based on availability (student tickets for those under 30 with valid ID)
Priority ticket access and preferred seat selection starts Dec 10 for $500+ Friends of Works & Process and Guggenheim members at the Associate level and above.
For more information, call 212 758 0024 or 212 423 3587, Mon–Fri, 1–5 pm, or visit worksandprocess.org. guggenheim.org/social.