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New Work for Goldberg Variations

Pam Tanowitz Dance / Simone Dinnerstein

three dancers in yellow leap around a grand piano, one dancer is sat on the floor

A riveting and effervescent mix of movement and music as Pam Tanowitz choreographs her dancers to a performance of Bach’s elaborate masterpiece played live by pianist Simone Dinnerstein.

Revolving around a grand piano, seven dancers demonstrate the rich emotional world lying beneath the Goldberg Variations, their dynamic stage presence spontaneous yet exact, fluid yet intricate. In this unpredictable and witty interplay of rhythm, style and poetry, everything emanates from the score, the action illuminated by a shifting palette of colour and light.

New York-based Tanowitz; deconstructs classical dance, her distinctive vocabulary shining with invention, complexity and freedom. Here she collaborates for the first time with Dinnerstein,a Bach specialist, having wowed Barbican audiences with the hit Four Quartets in 2019. Tanowitz is nominated in the Best Modern Choreography category for Four Quartets.

1 hour 15 mins/no interval
Age guidance 7+

Post-show talk, Thu 7 May
Free to same-day ticket holders

Presented by the Barbican. Commissioned by Duke Performances/Duke University and Peak Performances/Montclair State University. Co-commissioned by Opening Nights Performing Arts/Florida State University and Summer Stages Dance at the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston.


‘Tanowitz’s choreography is just stunning‘
‘Extraordinary. A riveting dialogue of movement and music.‘
New York Times
‘Bach’s score is a well known thing, but here it is a living, breathing thing.‘
‘The Goldberg audience seemed very sorry to see the show end. We had gone a long way with these dancers—seventy-five minutes—and we could have gone longer.‘
The New Yorker
‘The best thing I’ve seen by Tanowitz. The most cerebral choreographer working today.‘
Fjord Review