Friday, March 27 at 9 p.m. on PBS
(Check local listings)
Merriment and Milton are hardly synonymous, but the poet who penned "Paradise Lost" also inspired George Frideric Handel's L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato, which concludes "Mirth, with thee we mean to live." Choreographer Mark Morris garnered international fame for this piece, considered a landmark achievement, and set to Handel's Baroque masterpiece, in which a colorful array of dancers embody the ecstasy of art that transforms.
Mark Morris Dance Group: L'Allegro, il Penseroso ed il Moderato - hosted by Mikhail Baryshnikov - airs on Great Performances Friday, March 27, 2015 at 9 p.m. on PBS. (Check local listings.)
In discussing the work, Baryshnikov has admired "the way they perform it - with pride for humankind. There's restraint and dignity and satisfaction and pride. But at the same time there is an unspoken camaraderie; hands touching, running, and they suddenly become one and disappear like nothing has happened onstage."
The performance was filmed July 2014 at the Teatro Real in Madrid, Spain.