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New Swan Lake


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#1 purelyballet

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Posted 21 May 2004 - 08:46 AM

I believe PABallet is doing a new Swan Lake choreographed by Chris Wheeldon. Has anyone heard any info on this and does anyone know when the casting will be posted? B)

#2 Alexandra

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Posted 21 May 2004 - 01:38 PM

I don't know the casting yet, but there will be a new production of "Swan Lake" by Christopher Wheeldon at the Academy of Music from June 4 - 12. There's at least one interview with Wheeldon about this -- you might try doing a search on the Links thread for Wheeldon + Swan Lake.

#3 Dale

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Posted 21 May 2004 - 08:45 PM

I'll try to get the casting. Until then, here's the company press release:

PENNSYLVANIA BALLET PRESENTS A NEW, MILLION-DOLLAR SWAN LAKE
BY CHOREOGRAPHER CHRISTOPHER WHEELDON

PHILADELPHIA – Pennsylvania Ballet’s 40th Anniversary Season comes to a fabulous finish with the world premiere of a new, million-dollar production of Swan Lake, June 4 through 12 at the Academy of Music. Commissioned especially for Pennsylvania Ballet’s 40th Anniversary Season, this full-length production will be re-imagined by world-renowned choreographer Christopher Wheeldon.

Set to the famous Tchaikovsky score, Swan Lake embodies the heart and soul of classic story ballet, and ignites the senses with a mesmerizing plot, brilliant characters, and unforgettable moments of drama and beauty. Arguably the most famous ballet of all time, Swan Lake has touched generations of ballet and theatre-goers worldwide.

Pennsylvania Ballet’s new version will feature much of the original choreography created by Lev Ivanov and Marius Petipa in 1895, and the crux of the story – the tragic romance of the beautiful Swan Queen trapped by an evil sorcerer who allows her to become human only at night – will also remain the same. Mr. Wheeldon is changing selected elements of the plot as well as adding original choreography that will work cohesively with the traditional elements he will retain. He is also refocusing the narrative to be more prominent and realized more through dance and movement than through pantomime. In his own words, creating a new version of Swan Lake is to him like “resetting an old diamond heirloom into a contemporary setting.”

Resident Choreographer of New York City Ballet, Mr. Wheeldon is perhaps the most sought-after choreographer in the world, being hailed as “the next George Balanchine” by critics and audiences alike. His credits include a variety of repertory and full-length works for Boston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, The Royal

Ballet, and New York City Ballet, as well as the Broadway show Sweet Smell of Success and the film Center Stage. Born in Somerset, England, he studied at the Royal Ballet School, and danced as a member of the Royal Ballet for two years before joining New York City Ballet in 1993. He retired as a Soloist in 2000 to concentrate on his choreographic work.

“When we decided to create a new Swan Lake for the Company, I immediately knew I wanted Christopher to do it,” says Pennsylvania Ballet Artistic Director Roy Kaiser. “I have long admired his talent. Chris brings a wonderful perspective to this project – from his training and early years at the Royal Ballet to his current home, the New York City Ballet. This production will enable him to combine his contemporary creativity with his respect for and admiration of the tradition of Swan Lake.”

The award winning design team for this spectacular new production includes scenic designer Adrianne Lobel, costume designer Jean-Marc Puissant, and lighting designer Natasha Katz. Ms. Lobel recently developed, produced and designed the Tony nominated musical A Year with Frog and Toad, based on the story written by her father, Arnold Lobel. Her design credits include Broadway’s On the Town, Passion and The Diary of Anne Frank, many of Peter Sellars’ theatre and opera productions, and dance projects including works for Mark Morris Dance Company. Mr. Puissant’s design credits for dance include Tryst for Royal Ballet (Olivier Award Nomination for Best New Dance Production), Giselle for Ballet de l’Opera National du Rhin, The Sleeping Beauty for National Opera of Ankara in Turkey, VIII for the Hamburg Ballet, and The Seasons and Spring Pas de Deux for Royal Birmingham Ballet. Ms. Katz is a Tony Award winning lighting designer whose Broadway credits include Beauty and the Beast, Aida, and Seussical: The Musical. Additional design credits include Die Soldatan for New York City Opera and Don Quixote for American Ballet Theatre.

Tickets to Pennsylvania Ballet’s new production of Swan Lake range from $19 to $96, and are available beginning May 4 by calling (215) 893-1999 or online at www.paballet.org. Groups of ten or more can purchase discounted tickets now by calling (215) 551-7000, extension 1212 or 1213.

Performances are as follows:

Friday, June 4 at 8 p.m.
Saturday, June 5 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Sunday, June 6 at 2 p.m.
Wednesday, June 9 at 8 p.m.
Thursday, June 10 at 8 p.m.
Friday, June 11 at 8 p.m.
Saturday, June 12 at 12 p.m. and 8 p.m.
The 12 p.m. performance on June 12 is part of Pennsylvania Ballet’s Family Matinee Series, and includes a free Family Day event in the Academy Ballroom after the show. Family Day is a fun-filled event that features entertainment, games and craft activities, as well as autographs with some of the featured dancers.

This production was made possible, in part, by a grant from the William Penn Foundation; a Cultural Economic Development Grant funded by the Delaware River Port Authority with administrative support provided by the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance; the National Endowment for the Arts; and a grant from Dance Advance, a program funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts and administered by Drexel University. Additional support was provided by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, Wachovia, Claneil Foundation, the LouAlan Foundation, and Independence Blue Cross.

Founded in 1963, Pennsylvania Ballet is celebrating its 40th anniversary this season with popular works from the Company’s history, two company premieres and two world premieres commissioned for the 40th Anniversary. For more information, call (215) 551-7000 .

#4 carbro

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Posted 21 May 2004 - 10:22 PM

Resident Choreographer of New York City Ballet, Mr. Wheeldon is perhaps the most sought-after choreographer in the world, being hailed as “the next George Balanchine” by critics and audiences alike. 

Intending no disparagement to Mr. Wheeldon, who is indeed very talented, but . . . :jawdrop: !

#5 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 21 May 2004 - 10:34 PM

I think there's a good chance that when and if Wheeldon saw that quote, he cringed as well. No one likes that kind of praise, it only comes back to haunt you later.

#6 Alexandra

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Posted 23 May 2004 - 06:06 AM

There's an article in the Philadelphia Inquirer today with brief interviews with the three Swan Queens (the Siegfrieds don't count, evidently.) See Links for the link to the article, but the Unveiled are:

Dede Barfield

Riolama Lorenzo

Arantxa Ochoa

#7 purelyballet

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Posted 24 May 2004 - 07:42 AM

Thanks for doing such a great job of keeping us informed. :)

#8 lillianna

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Posted 25 May 2004 - 06:57 PM

I will be in the Philadelphia area on business from SF and lucky enough to be there for opening night. I am really looking forward to it. Hope that it isn't too far from the original. I really love the music. Swan Lake is one of my favorite ballets.

#9 Dale

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 07:00 AM

The casting is up now (click on the bottom Swan Lake):

http://www.paballet....new_season.html

#10 cargill

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 09:34 AM

Well, I see one promising development--no jester! There is also a Russian dance, which is nice, because I love that music. No mazurka, which is too bad, but after seening the Kirov's version, no one can match it, and half-done mazurkas are very dull. There are a couple of oddities, though--the ball room scene now lists can-can dancers and gentleman patrons, and ballerinas and waiters. Can it have turned into Merry Widow?

#11 Dale

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 10:02 AM

Mary, I noticed the can-can girls....this could be trouble.

#12 Alexandra

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 10:17 AM

Odile has been LONGING to show off her prowess in the Can-
Can for more than a century. Now may be her Big Chance!!!!

#13 GWTW

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 10:57 AM

Maybe Odette is one of the ballerinas who has a gentleman protector and Odile, who is a cancan dancer, is jealous because she can only catch the absinthe addicts.
Oh dear, I have been so sad that after spending 9 months in Philly I am going home exactly when this Swan Lake is premiering. I hope I remain sad about it after reading everyone's reviews. :wink:

#14 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 11:39 AM

Nonsense. Odette is actually the Merry Widow.

#15 cargill

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Posted 26 May 2004 - 11:51 AM

Sorry, Leigh, I see Odette more as one of the ballerinas with a gentleman patron! Those whiny women always seem to find someone to latch on to. Maybe the can can is an option for Odile when she is tired of fouettes.


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