I remember several years ago — maybe five now — sitting in another, much smaller theater on Broadway watching a Dance Times Square teacher / student showcase and nearly falling out of my chair during the all-pro part when my teacher, Pasha (Kovalev), and his partner, Anya (Garnis), danced a West Coast Swing-turned Jive to Tina Turner’s Proud Mary. They also danced a Samba and, if I remember correctly a Rumba and though I’d started lessons with him, it was the first time I saw him dance with her. It was one of those performances where you feel kind of sick afterward because you don’t have a DVD or any kind of recording and you fear you’ll never see dance like that again. I also remember thinking how they should really be on Broadway. I mean, real Broadway, like in a regular theater.
So this is, to make a massive understatement, Surreal!
Several of my friends from Dance Times Square and I went to the Longacre Theater tonight to see our friends made their Broadway debuts in Jason Gilkison’s Burn the Floor. Of course we had to go to the (insanely packed) stage door afterward.
Pasha’s about to give me a hug here I guess I repaid him by flashing my camera right in his face. Oh the endlessly annoying paparazzi…
How gorgeous is Anya?! Posing with my friend Steve and his wife, Ina.
They took over the roles of Maks Chmerkovskiy and Karina Smirnoff and of course they were radiant. I think they worked better with the show size-wise because of that small stage (which Maks was too large for — I love him, but he made it look all the more crowded up there).
If you didn’t read it, see my earlier review of the show here.
I think the dancers got used to the small floor; everything went much more smoothly. My favorite parts remain the extended Swing / Jive section that ends the first half and the two Rumbas in the second half (Peta Murgatroyd’s classic, dance-hall Rumba, and the more contemporary, sensual, half-dressed Rumba by the leads — although I noticed Pasha and Anya wore more clothes in that number than Maks & Karina did ). But … I also like the Tango- turned dual Paso Dobles in the second half. Okay, I like the whole second half (mainly devoted to Latin).
In my earlier review, I don’t think I mentioned Sasha Farber as one of the dancers who most stood out to me. He’s a character dancer, kind of like Craig Salstein, and he has a rather fun part early on during a Jive where he’s trying hard to get the girl and gets carted off, kicking madly, by two men. He’s lively, actorly, and can really move quite fast. And Murgatroyd, which I wrote about in the earlier review, captivated me again, with her long limbs and gorgeous balletic lines. I mean, I really liked everyone; it’s hard even to single people out.
Here is Peta Murgatroyd exiting the stage door, on a bike! Actually, almost all of the dancers were on them. Apparently the show’s producers or someone from the company had given them the bikes so they could get around town more easily. Peta was popular with autograph-seekers too.
Ooh, wonderful night. I miss them…
Oh and this seems to be making headlines.
The Walter Kerr Theater across the street from the Longacre is advertising the show as well. See the arrow in the sign on the right side of the street. It’s pointing across the street. It’s the first time a Broadway theater has ever advertised for another show!