The New York Times
September 15, 2015
“Much of the drive and fascination of the inventive choreography… arises from how it forces the performers to get in their own way and, without hesitation, keep going.”
The New York Times
July 14, 2014
“Thirty-six square feet can barely contain one dancer, let alone three, and when the trio occupied the platform together or in pairs, they charted interweaving pathways with exciting precision, never sacrificing the fullness or directness of their movement to the confines of the square. It could have been a metaphor for living — or dancing — in New York. Why rent rehearsal space, why bother with a theater, when you can do so much with a platform the size of your bathroom?”
“Ms. Cornfield made resourceful use of vertical as much as of horizontal planes, interspersing playful, everyday gestures (mimed preening, adjusting of clothes and hair) with rocketing leaps and lifts.”
“Fault Lines …combines visual clarity with an ongoing springiness. People leap across the space. Women race toward men and are whirled off their feet… Cornfield skillfully varies their big, bold patterns – breaking out a trio here, a duet event there, a burst of individual steps.”
“(The dancers move) less by intent than by instinct – the way birds feeding alone will suddenly flock and fly up at change in the wind. Their forays are rich and full of variety – from wild allegro to serenity in the blink of an eye.”
Zachodni Newspaper Poland
“Rich choreographic imagination. …youthful passion and energy.”
Dance Magazine Japan
"Cornfield Dance has an internal power generated from the abstraction of the choreography. It was fascinating. I was intoxicated from the combination of the tension and release of the dancing, as I drank in the space and time the dancers created through their bodies.”
- "Cornfield’s dances frankly celebrate the highly trained dancer as an exemplar of human thought, ingenuity, and vitality … it’s invigorating to see complex movement that can surprise us with unexpected dynamic shifts or startling collusions of individuals and body parts… Every gesture … is elegantly rendered – and the product of elegant choices.”
Joan Finkelstein, Executive Director, Harkness Foundation for Dance, 2016
- "Ellen Cornfield is one of our most inventive pure abstract dance makers. Her newest works – beautifully danced by top-notch performers – are replete with engaging movement detail and a continuous stream of fresh, surprising moments. Thoroughly enjoyable!”
Manager of Public Programs, Yale Center for British Art, 2016
- “Cornfield Dance presented an innovative and breathtakingly beautiful dance performance at the Yale Center for British Art during its major reopening in May, 2016. In a mesmerizing program called "Small Stages" dancers experimented with spatial constraints on a 6'X6' platform stage, performing with impressive energy and impeccable skill. The performance was compelling and thought-provoking, and Ellen Cornfield's choreography is pure genius! We will no doubt be working with them again in the near future.”
Kenneth King, Author and Multimedia Artist
- "Friday night’s performance of an excerpt from Ellen Cornfield’s masterful dance Pas de Detour at Settlement House was an amazing tour de force that challenged and rewarded the viewer’s eye. The excellent dancers more than rose to the occasion: Pierre Guilbault, Ruth Howard, Vanessa Knouse, and Logan Pedon executed shape-shifting calligraphic gestures involving flexed and angled elbows, semaphoric arms, and vaulting legs with lightning speed dexterity. Pierre Guilbault especially demonstrated the bravura challenge of daring off-center leaps, bold balances, and startling recoveries. Intricately evolving contrapuntal canons constantly split apart and morphed into unexpected configurations creating a virtual labyrinth of detours, and was danced to an electronic score by Andreas Brade, against a mysteriously muted oneiric filmscape décor with bright, eye-catching costumes by Andrew Jordan. Ellen Cornfield danced magnificently in a long career with Merce Cunningham’s dance company; only an insider experienced in his high-energy digital process could compose a dance like this. The ancient Greek philosopher Lucien reminds us that the mysteries can only be danced out. And only dance can inhabit and reveal a parallel universe! Bravo!"
October 4, 2014
"For the opening of her 25th anniversary season, Ellen Cornfield didn’t need much space, much set, or much hoopla. Her small company of excellent dancers moved to graceful and distinct choreography… she humanized the work with tender underlying jokes and human expression, triggering connections among the dancers as characters in vaguely told stories."
“…lively dances…fluency of kinetic invention spinning from (Cornfield’s) fertile imagination…”
Artistic Director the Electric Theater Company, 2010
“Primer……amazed at every turn… wonderful depth of texture, contrasting elements that informed each other, color and motion that mingled and startled, groupings that intrigued, emotional tones that came suddenly and vanished as quickly.”
May 4, 2009
“…Cornfield Dance gives us dancing! …a kinetic balance between grace and athleticism that makes clear their passion and spot-on training.”
Carla Maxwell, Former Artistic Director of the Jose Limon Dance Company, 2009
"Ellen Cornfield offers us a rare blend of poetry and kinesthetic excitement. Watching her dances is to enter into a special worldwhere the unexpected is the norm."
David Parker, Curator West End Theater
"A feast of ravishing dancing with an unexpected emotional punch. The cast is superb. It takes decades of application to make this kind of work."
Jane Nowosadko, Manager of Public Programs, Yale Center for British Art
"Ellen Cornfield’s choreography is puregenius!”