Yvonne was inspired by the Ballet Russes piece “Sacre du Printemps” (Rites of Spring) for this dance commissioned for Performa’07 and the Documenta Festival in Kassel, Germany. The original 1913 production, with choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky and music by Igor Stravinsky, became legendary when outraged patrons stormed the stage during its Paris opening.
For the company, I designed improvised looking get-ups, as if downtown dancers had used rehearsal clothes to make an impromptu folkloric tribe. For an additional man and woman, who would be planted in the audience, Yvonne asked me to precisely recreate two costumes from the original Nicholas Roerich designs. She had them and other audience members run onstage at the end. Hand-painting the complex geometric patterns onto the washed-silk tunics at home was another rite of passage. Luckily my own tribe grabbed brushes and helped out!
Choreographed by Yvonne Rainer
Set Design: Joel Reynolds
Cast: Pat Catterson, Emily Coates, Patricia Hoffbauer and Sally Silvers.
Photos: Paula Court and EH Clancy