NYCB's Robert Fairchild will star in Christopher Wheeldon's upcoming musical production of An American in Paris. Fairchild will sing and dance the role of Jerry which was made famous by Gene Kelly. The production will open at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris this fall and then move to Broadway in 2015. Wow.
This tidbid of information was tacked onto the tail end of Fairchild's biography in the BAMbill that was handed out at BAM tonight prior to the delightful concert by the Carolina Chocolate Drops. Twyla Tharp choreographed the Cornbread Duet for Fairchild and Tiler Peck to perform to a few musical selections. Norma Kamali created the fetching costumes of unitards and tights with wide horizontal black and white stripes.
The Carolina Chocolate Drops are a four-member group [Rhiannon Giddens, Hubby Jenkins, Malcolm Parson, and Rowan Corbett] who sing and play the fiddle, amplified cello, various banjos, acoustic guitars, hand drums, and bones. They perform a unique blend of bluegrass, blues, and African music with a little bit of gospel and country thrown in for good measure.
Oh my, was Twyla ever in her element working with this group. Her most interesting choreographic moments came during her own freestyle outburst during the second half of the program. Within the 'official' PdD, however, she put together some nice square dance based movements and then jacked them up with Peck's pointework and Fairchild's solos that pitched and rolled like those that John Selya used to dance for Tharp.
What a fun night.