The Best Thing About This Season's NYC Ballet Might Be the Seats
New York City Ballet goers will be treated to a healthy dose of design this season. The NYCB commissioned three New York–based studios to create seating areas for the Promenade level of the David H. Koch Theater, allowing attendees to mingle in legendary architect Philip Johnson’s "jewel box" before each performance. Asher Israelow, Egg Collective, and Token were selected to take on the project and each produced collections worthy of the iconic space.
The three studios worked independently, but their shared inspiration led to a cohesive collection. Drawing on the architecture of the modern space as well as opulent materials found throughout the iconic building helped to create a similar aesthetic, but each designer added a personal touch of whimsy when incorporating their interpretation of the ballet into their work.
With a background in architecture, designer Asher Israelow found the duty of furnishing the Philip Johnson–designed space a most prestigious challenge. “He’s such a large name in architecture and design. Thinking about what I would place in one of his buildings when he designed all of his own furnishings definitely drew me out of what I would normally have done."
The dotted brass inlays found on each table top in Israelow’s collection sing on their own but the story of their placement creates an "aha" moment. Each table’s inlays correspond to a star map of a specific place, date, and time of significance to the New York City Ballet. The largest table portrays the debut of Serenade, the first ballet choreographed in the United States by NYCB founder George Ballanchine. Israelow aimed to create pieces that would “all be the same stylistically, but tell different stories on their own."
The Promenade is open to guests one hour before curtain, allowing enough time to linger in gems from some of New York’s best designers before taking in a breathtaking ballet set in a lifesize jewelry box.
This post originally appeared on Dwell, an Atlantic partner site.