The Choreography of Maurice Bejart


French choreographer Maurice Bejart (pictured) died yesterday at the age of 80. Living in Paris in the 1980s, I saw his vaunted productions of “Firebird” (staged as an animalistic mating rite) and “Bolero” (the all-male version, which was beyond camp, and not very sexy). Having been raised on Merce Cunningham, I couldn’t see what all the fuss was about: Bejart may have had “ideas,” but he didn’t have much choreography, at least not to my eye. I don’t want this posting to turn into what my friend Tom Steele calls an “o-bitch-uary,” so I’ll refer readers simply to Anna Kisselgoff’s Bejart appreciation in the New York Times. And I’ll mention that when the Alvin Ailey company opens its New York season on Wednesday, it will feature a tribute to Bejart.

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