The Sweeter End

Making of the Sweeter End

New Orleans Diary


In the 9-month-old “The Sweeter End,” the 10 members of the Trey McIntyre Project performed with devastating sharpness a breathless, engulfing, high-speed amalgam of ballet steps, gymnastic feats, ballroom fragments and eruptions of snake-hips undulation.

And it always flowed, always swung. By itself, John Michael Schert's extraordinary solo to "Ol' Man Mose" showed you a linear ballet body suddenly fractured, melted down, reintegrated and reconstituted as a futuristic prototype ready for anything. And the two contrasting arrangements of “St. James Infirmary” (one weighty and dirge-like, the other explosively propulsive) found McIntyre's forces not so much dancing to the music as developing a daring, virtuosic dialogue with it.

Meanwhile the band played on, sometimes deferring to the dancers by providing spare drum-and-hand-clap accompaniment, but elsewhere challenging any dancer anywhere to match the spirit and cohesion of its super, über-Dixieland musicianship. But the wow factor of McIntyre's choreography never faltered, so the evening sustained the sense of an ideal collaboration and proved again that there is indeed such a thing as genuine 21st century ballet, and it belongs more to this guy from Wichita than any of the over-hyped pretenders from England, France or Russia.

McIntyre rocks, McIntyre rules. Everyone else can just get in line.
-The Los Angeles Times

Perry was simply amazing, Rose was beautiful, and Jason Hartley’s solo was striking. Schert looked like he didn’t have a bone in his body, and Ashley Werhun’s duet with Perry was excellent. Every dancer had his or her moment to move and each one moved so differently, like one musician after another highlighting their instruments by improvising during a jazz performance. It looked totally spontaneous, but was precise and technical.
-Palm Beach Artspaper

In McIntyre's choreography, "Sweeter End" starts out with twisted shapes of anguish stretched over time and turned into confident, positive energy.
-Arizona Star

The robust muscularity of McIntyre's freewheeling choreography was at its invigorating best in "The Sweeter End," a 2011 collaborative effort with New Orleans' Preservation Hall Jazz Band.
-San Francisco Chronicle


Preservation Hall Jazz Band


Running Time: 28 minutes
Premiered: Feb. 4, 2011 by Trey McIntyre Project


Costume Design: Andrea Lauer
Set Design: Trey McIntyre
Lighting Design: Travis C. Richardson


The Sweeter End was co-commissioned by the New Orleans Ballet Association and underwritten by Blair Kutrow of Wrightsville, NC. Original music commissioned by the Charles and Joan Gross Family Foundation of New York, NY

Additional underwriting support provided by Kerry Clayton and Paige Royer of New Orleans, University of Florida Performing Arts and Lincoln Center for Lincoln Center Out of Doors 2011. Additional support provided by the Boise Convention and Visitors Bureau and National Endowment for the Arts funding through USA Projects, an online initiative of United States Artists

Denim supplied by Levi’s® Jeans