With McKayle in the room, The Times watched DCDC’s rehearsal of “Rainbow; Round My Shoulder,” McKayle’s 1959 work about life on a chain gang. DCDC performed the show last week at David H. Koch Theater in New York's Lincoln Center.
“At the rehearsal, Mr. McKayle worked on that scene with the Dayton dancers. He cued them with his own ear-shattering shouts of ‘Bang!,’ but at other times he simply sang the songs. 'I can sing the whole thing,' he said. ‘I can feel the music and the movement as one.’
Debbie Blunden-Diggs, Dayton Contemporary’s artistic director, said that ‘Rainbow’ called for technical prowess as well as a different kind of stamina. 'It requires your physical presence as well as your mental presence and your spiritual presence,' she said. ‘You have to sort of be willing to bare your soul in order to give the best of yourself to this kind of work.’”
All that practice paid off.
The company recieved a five-minute standing ovation and extra curtain calls the first night of the show alone.
DCDC's dancers performed with the Paul Taylor American Dance Theater.