How Near Heaven was Tharp’s first commission for American Ballet Theatre under the leadership of artistic director Kevin McKenzie. The ballet featured three of the company’s principal ballerinas: Kathleen Moore, Paloma Herrera, in one of her first roles as principal, and Cynthia Harvey, who would retire the following year.
The two young ballerinas (Herrera was only 19 at the time) mirror each other through folk and social dance sequences. Quick steps and explosive jumps characterize their phrases. They are mythological twins – representations of duality and the constancy of change.
The third ballerina is measured and controlled. She is often partnered in high, sustained lifts, elevating her above the action onstage. Poised and mature, she personifies unification.
Variations on a Theme of Frank Bridge for String Orchestra, Op. 10
Composed by Benjamin Britten - 1937
Variation 1: Adagio
Variation 2: March
Variation 3: Romance
Variation 4: Aria Italiana
Variation 5: Bourrée classique
Variation 6: Wiener Waltzer
Variation 7: Moto perpetuo
Variation 8: Funeral March
Variation 9: Chant
Variation 10: Fugue and Finale
Additional performances on March 4 & 5, 1995