Agon (1957) is a ballet for twelve dancers, with music by Igor Stravinsky and choreography by George Balanchine. Composition began in December 1953 but was interrupted the next year; work was resumed in 1956 and concluded on April 27, 1957; the music was first performed on June 17, 1957 in Los Angeles conducted by Robert Craft, while the first stage performance was given by the New York City Ballet on December 1, 1957 at the City Center of Music and Drama, New York (White 1979, 490). The composition's long gestation period covers an interesting juncture in Stravinsky's composing career, in which he moved from a diatonic musical language to one based on twelve-tone technique; the music of the ballet thus demonstrates a unique symbiosis of musical idioms. The ballet has no story, but consists of a series of dance movements in which various groups of dancers interact in pairs, trios, quartets, etc. A number of the movements are based on 17th-century French court dances – saraband, galliard and bransle. It was danced as part of City Ballet's 1982 Stravinsky Centennial Celebration.
|Date of composition||1957 (Composition began in December 1953. Interrupted in 1954. Resumed in 1956 and achieved in 1957.)|
|Premiered||1957, December 1st (City Center of Music and Drama) in New York, NY, United States|
|Approx. duration||20 minutes|
Igor Stravinsky: Agon
Igor' Fëdorovič Stravinskij: Agon
Igor Strawinsky: Agon