October 21, 2016

Mikhail Baryshnikov, one of the great ballet dancers of the late 20th century, tries to evoke the violently disordered mind of Vaslav Nijinsky, one of the great ballet dancers of the early 20th century, in “Letter to a Man,” an opaque and frustrating work of dance theater being presented at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. It takes just a glance at the visual aspects of the production — the vampire-white makeup on Mr. Baryshnikov’s face would probably suffice, actually — to clock his collaborator in this misguided enterprise: Robert Wilson, the theater auteur known for his chilly and glacially paced, if often hypnotically beautiful, work. Mr. Wilson is credited with the direction, set design and lighting concept, “with” Mr. Baryshnikov.