Written May 5, 1997
by Nathan Birch
Founding Artistic Director
The Next Ice Age
Twelve years ago, when I learned the Curry Company was finished, something happened to me.
I stopped feeling things.
It has been the vision of this moment that has carried me through – to see artistic ensemble skating return to the Opera House stage!
As with all significant personal achievements, the importance reaches far beyond that of one human being’s dream.
I hope you will feel as I do that this engagement is evidence that skating is in fact a legitimate form of dance, worthy of recognition by performing arts centers around the globe. Skating is, indeed, “Moving On.”
Certainly other forms of skating have popularized the medium of sport and spectacle, however I believe, and I hope you agree, that there is room for an ensemble company in both the skating industry as well as in the dance world. You are all proof that there exists an interested and viable audience and for this, we thank each and every one of you.
It was the dream of my mentor, John Curry, that in time many independent skating companies would form to courageously explore and express, as he did, new frontiers of movement, free from the constraints of corporate board rooms and commercially-minded decision making. So, although this engagement is, importantly a milestone for skating and dance that will encourage groups across the country to keep the faith in their vision and voice so that they, too, might be seen and heard in the halls of great institutions like the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
I would like to personally thank Charles and Stephanie Reinhart and Mr. Lawrence Wilker for giving skating this opportunity to appear once again with the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra. It is truly wonderful to “feel things” again.