Lincoln Kirstein (1907–1996) was a writer and ballet critic. In 1946, together with George Balanchine, Kirstein founded the Ballet Society, which would soon be renamed The New York City Ballet. In 1984 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.


The Monstrous Itch

Private Domain

by Paul Taylor
“Dancing was It. Dancing was what life was all about. If you wanted to be a dancer, you didn’t just want it, you felt chosen to be one. You see, dancing was more of an obligation than a whim. It’s a religion, a monstrous itch, a huge and illogical church.


The Gavin Ewart Show: Selected Poems 1939–1985

by Gavin Ewart

The Young Pobble's Guide to his Toes

by Gavin Ewart
The very notion of poet laureate summons up a figure of fun. This in no way denigrates our present national incumbent, certainly a most appropriate choice. But if one admits the faint risibility of certain verses by past laurel-crowned Britons, the chief of current comedians in the observance of public …

Beliefs of a Master

for Father Adrian When George Balanchine set foot on Manhattan in the autumn of 1933, he and his colleagues were so preoccupied with confusing circumstances, inevitable in founding any ambitious institution, that while formulating an overall educational morality was not ignored, its expression was delayed. However, after our fledgling …

On Edwin Denby

Edwin Denby is well known as an impressive dance critic. By the time he was sixty, the two volumes of his collected notices from the Forties and Fifties were taken as basic theatrical history. Although his particular attention referred to performances no longer visible, moral and aesthetic judgment illuminated current …

Maker and Teacher

A printed listing of the works of George Balanchine may be set alongside the Köchel catalogue of Mozart: the works of choreographer and composer share many qualities. Balanchine has been extremely prolific. For over fifty years his invention has been uninterrupted. There has been hardly a season since he was …

Uncle Wiz the Wizard

W.H. Auden: A Biography

by Humphrey Carpenter
This capacious, cautious, splendid biography commences with its author’s caveat: “It is not a book of literary criticism.” It ably shows how certain writings developed from instances of a lifetime. “I hope I have also managed to convey my own huge enthusiasm for his poetry.” Here Carpenter triumphs where others …

Lincoln Shelter

Lincoln Center: The Building of an Institution

by Edgar B. Young, with a foreword by Frank Stanton
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Inc., shelters opera, instrumental music, dance, drama, film, the Juilliard School, and a research branch of the New York Public Library. It has operated since 1962, time enough to call for more than congratulations. Pebble-aggregate paving around the central fountain needs granite replacement. Carpeted …