Start a new holiday tradition: watch the magic of George Balanchine's The Nutcracker™ in your pajamas from the best seats in your house. Find serenity in Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring performed in a Shaker barn amidst endless fields of Kentucky bluegrass. Illuminate your living room with Alvin Ailey's Revelation, "one of the great works of the human spirit" (New York Times). Now available as gorgeously produced DVDs and Blu-Rays, these legendary Lincoln Center performances are classics you'll want to experience over and over again from the comfort of your own home.
Lincoln Center at the Movies: George Balanchine's The Nutcracker™
Experience the wonder of this iconic production of a holiday classic on screen. In George Balanchine's The Nutcracker™, Tchaikovsky’s beloved melodies transport the young and young at heart to a magical world where mischievous mice besiege a battalion of toy soldiers, and an onstage blizzard leads to an enchanted Land of Sweets. In the New York City Ballet’s famously extravagant staging, Balanchine’s stunning choreography shines amidst awe-inspiring set pieces, ornate costumes, and grand one-of-a-kind visual effects, like the one-ton Christmas tree that grows to an astonishing 40 feet.
Running time: 110 minutes
Available now on Amazon.com
Live From Lincoln Center: Simple Gifts
Each year on Memorial Day Weekend, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center takes up residency in one of the country's most beautiful historic sites: Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill in Kentucky, where a vibrant Shaker community once flourished. Live From Lincoln Center went on the road with the ensemble for the first time in its 40-year history, taking its cameras, trucks, and a 15-member crew into the heart of rural America. Performed for a riveted audience in a converted tobacco barn, the concert celebrated American music with unparalleled intimacy and intensity, climaxing with Aaron Copland's iconic Appalachian Spring, which incorporates a traditional Shaker theme at the heart of the work.
The result is both a gorgeous meditation on making music and a window into a unique corridor of American history. Pulsing with the spirit of the Shakers, the film draws poignant parallels between the relationship between art and craftsmanship, the beauty and hardships of the frontier, and the quest for transcendence in American life.
Featuring performances of Copland's Appalachian Spring, Gottschalk's The Union, Dvorák's Sonatina, Barber's Souvenirs, O'Connor's F.C.'s Jig, and selections from Foster's The Social Orchestra, plus an additional 52-minute bonus documentary, A Gift to be Simple.
Running time: 90 minutes
Available now on ShopPBS.org
Lincoln Center at the Movies: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Alvin Ailey's Revelations, described by The New York Times as "one of the great works of the human spirit,” is a stunning, soulful tour de force that draws on African-American spirituals, song-sermons, gospel songs, and holy blues. The wide-ranging influences and irrepressible passion of Revelations are evident across the rest of this electrifying program, which features Wayne McGregor's sumptuous Chroma, set to a score by Joby Talbot with orchestrations of songs by The White Stripes; Ronald K. Brown's Grace, a powerful meeting of modern and West African dance with a soundtrack by Duke Ellington, Roy Davis, and Fela Kuti; and Robert Battle's humorous, high-flying Takademe.