The New York Times‘ Guy Trebay spent the afternoon with The Trocks as the company prepared for an evening performance at The Joyce. Take a look at some of the images The New York Times captured backstage in this slide show.
And, read Guy’s article in today’s New York Times. An excerpt follows:
“AND a two and an up and a down, and eyes to the back of the room,” Charla Genn said from a perch at stage right at the Joyce Theater in Chelsea. “And a beep, and a ba-ba-ba and a tour jeté and you’re fabulous, you’re marvelous, relax.”
Two hours before evening curtain, Ms. Genn, a company teacher for Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, was putting the dancers through their paces. At a word, the group — which moments before had been leaping and pirouetting and teetering en pointe and performing crisp series of sauts de chat and tours jeté that only occasionally gave them the look of someone vaulting a barrel — abruptly hit the off switch that dancers and athletes are able to activate, and slumped for break.
“Don’t get too comfortable,” Tory Dobrin, the company’s artistic director, instructed the assembled ballerinas. “Enjoy your five minutes, and then come back in your tutus and no wigs.”
Slipping on leg warmers and sweatshirts, the dancers then hustled toward the wings, as motley an assortment of ballerinas — tall ones, short ones, stocky ones, thin ones, smooth and also hairy-chested ones — as you are ever likely to see assembled onstage. That is intentional, of course. All of the dancers in the Trocks, as the company is known, are men.
The Trocks’ gimmick, which has kept it together and dancing to sold-out houses for decades, is an affectionate travesty that skewers the famed Russian ballets, with their noble repertories and knife-edge technique, and equally the bulldozer ballerinas who would smilingly cold-cock any corps member audacious enough to block the sightline of a fouetté.
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