Nancy Reynolds receives Service to the Field of Dance Bessie Award
Honoring Nancy Reynolds, currently Director of Research at the George Balanchine Foundation
OUTSTANDING SERVICE TO THE FIELD OF DANCE
The New York Dance and Performance Awards (The Bessies), NYC’s premiere dance awards honoring outstanding creative work in the field, announces legendary dance historian Nancy Reynolds as the recipient of the 2013 NY Dance and Performance Award for Outstanding Service to the Field of Dance Award. The award will be presented at the 29th Annual Bessie Awards ceremony at the legendary Apollo Theater on Monday, October 7th.
Nancy Reynolds, former New York City Ballet dancer, will be honored for profoundly altering and enriching the field of dance preservation and archival research. Reynolds currently serves as Director of Research at the George Balanchine Foundation, where she manages the Balanchine video archives, giving new life to his works by filming former ballet stars coaching Balanchine’s work on current dancers—an invaluable resource for educational institutions. This groundbreaking project, started in 1994, is a masterful conservation for future generations of dancers, often recreating dances that have been lost. To date more than 50 sessions have been filmed – accessible at more than seventy libraries around the world, including the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
Reynolds has simultaneously published authoritative dance history books such as No Fixed Points, a nine-hundred page history of Western dance in the twentieth century, and Repertory in Review, a history of City Ballet’s repertory from 1935–1976. She edited Lincoln Kirstein’s book Movement and Metaphor and contributed to the International Encyclopedia of Dance. She directed research for Choreography by George Balanchine: A Catalogue of Works. Each of her books is considered an essential addition to any serious dance lover’s library.
"Nancy's innovative project, filming original dancers from Balanchine's work as they coach younger performers, ensures that the deep body memory of that choreography can be passed on. Her project is a gift to the world and we are honored to be able to present an award that celebrates her dedication to dance history and preservation,” said Lucy Sexton, Director of the NY Dance and Performance Awards.
The Bessies, termed by The New York Times as “the dance world’s version of the Academy Awards,” will take place on Monday, October 7, 2013 at 8:00pm at the legendary Apollo Theater in New York City. The 2013 ceremony will mark The Bessie Awards’ third year at the Apollo Theater. Presenters include such dance royalty as Christopher Wheeldon, Meredith Monk, Steve Paxton, Desmond Richardson, Annie-B Parsons, Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Joe Levasseur and Rajika Puri. Performances of work by 2012 Lifetime Achievement honoree Paul Taylor from Outstanding Emerging Choreographer Joanna Kotze and Juried Bessie Award winner Darrell Jones will also be featured.
ABOUT THE BESSIES
Produced in partnership with Dance/NYC, the NY Dance and Performance Awards have saluted outstanding and groundbreaking creative work by independent dance artists in NYC for 29 years. Known as “The Bessie” in honor of revered dance teacher Bessie Schonberg, the awards were established in 1983 by David White at Dance Theater Workshop. They recognize exceptional work in choreography, performance, music composition and visual design. A 40-member selection committee comprised of artists, presenters, producers, and writers choose nominees. All those working in the dance field are invited to join the NY Dance and Performance League—members participate in annual discussions on the direction of the awards and nominate members to serve on the selection committee.