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PA Ballet's 45th Anniversary Season2008-2009


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#1 Figurante

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 08:01 PM

The 2008-2009 Season has been posted on the website:

"Pennsylvania Ballet honors its Balanchine heritage while venturing beyond ballet boundaries in its 45th Anniversary Season with four Company premieres, two world premieres, two celebrated classics and the perennial holiday favorite, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker. Full season subscriptions, which start at $95, are available by calling 215.893.1955"

[size=2][font="Arial Black"]Balanchine and Beyond[/font][/size]
A triple-bill that includes George Balanchine’s Ballo della Regina, and the Company premieres of Mauro Bigonzetti’s Kazimir’s Colours and Twyla Tharp’s Push Comes to Shove.
October 29 - November 2 at the Academy of Music

[font="Arial Black"]
[size=2]George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker [/size][/font]
The quintessential holiday theatre tradition returns to the Academy of Music for its 40th Season.
December 12 – December 31 at the Academy of Music

[size=2][font="Arial Black"]Love & Longing [/font][/size]
A world premiere by innovative choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa completes this sizzling program that also includes Peter Martins’s Fearful Symmetries and Twyla Tharp’s Nine Sinatra Songs.
February 11-15 at the Merriam Theater at the University of the Arts

[size=2][font="Arial Black"]Cinderella [/font][/size]
This rags-to-riches tale, when told through the language of ballet, will delight audiences of all ages.
March 13 – March 21 at the Academy of Music

[size=2][font="Arial Black"]Tango with Style [/font][/size]
Choreographer in Residence Matthew Neenan will unveil his 10th work for the Company on a program of premieres that includes Peter Martins’s Barber Violin Concerto and
Hans van Manen’s passionate Five Tangos.
May 6 – 10 at the Merriam Theater at the University of the Arts

[size=2][font="Arial Black"]La Sylphide [/font][/size]
When a young Scottish farmer abandons his bride-to-be, his demise becomes clear to all but he.
June 5 – June 13 at the Academy of Music

“We’re looking forward to an exhilarating anniversary season. It’s very satisfying to perform classic works from our repertory while bringing new work by emerging international choreographers to audiences in Philadelphia,” says Artistic Director Roy Kaiser. “The artists of Pennsylvania Ballet have unique and distinct personalities, and I’m confident this season’s lineup will allow their artistry to shine through.”



Balanchine & Beyond

Ballo della Regina: Choreography by George Balanchine (Music: Giuseppe Verdi)
Kazimir’s Colours: Choreographed by Mauro Bigonzetti (Music: Dmitri Shostakovich)
COMPANY PREMIERE
Push Comes to Shove: Choreographed by Twyla Tharp (Music: Joseph Haydn and Joseph Lamb, arr. David Bourne)
COMPANY PREMIERE
October 29 – November 2
Academy of Music
Broad and Locust Streets

Pennsylvania Ballet’s 45th Season begins with a pageant of pastels and precision in Balanchine’s Ballo della Regina, a 17-minute tour-de-force of virtuoso variations and ballerina bravura that merits its translation, “Dance for the Queen”. Inspired by Russian painter Kazimir Malevich and set to Shostakovich’s Concerto for Piano, Trumpet and Orchestra, Mauro Bigonzetti’s Kazimir’s Colours explores the inter-relationships between joy and light, romance and lyricism, geometric forms and abstraction while adhering to classic technique. The evening is capped off with Twyla Tharp’s comedic tale of a male soloist’s struggle to navigate a world that demands structure. One of the dance arena’s most widely recognized “cross-over” ballets, Push Comes to Shove is a cornerstone piece in the Tharp canon, created for Mikhail Baryshnikov in 1976, that pushes through barriers of ballet and shoves modern dance to center stage in her signature style.

The acquisition and presentation of Kazimir’s Colours is made possible in part by a grant from Dance Advance, an artistic initiative of the Philadelphia Center for Arts and Heritage, funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts and administered by the University of the Arts.


George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker

Choreography by George Balanchine (Music: Peter Ilyich Tschaikovsky)
December 12 – 31
Academy of Music
Broad and Locust Streets

Pennsylvania Ballet and PNC present the perennial holiday favorite at the Academy of Music for its 40th season. A new production was unveiled last year before record-breaking audiences; hailed as “breathtakingly beautiful” by The Philadelphia Inquirer. Relive the majesty of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker this year with your family and friends. Balanchine’s masterful choreography and Tschaikovsky’s enchanting score performed by the Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra with the Philadelphia Boys Choir showcases the Company at its finest. Full of freshness and draped in grandeur, this is an extravaganza not to be missed. The production’s corporate supporters include PNC Bank, Presenting Sponsor; and Chrysler Jeep, the Official Automotive Sponsor of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker.


Love & Longing

Fearful Symmetries: Choreography by Peter Martins (Music: Samuel Barber)
World Premiere: Choreography by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa
Nine Sinatra Songs: Choreography by Twyla Tharp (Music: Frank Sinatra)
February 11 - 15
Merriam Theater at the University of the Arts
250 S. Broad Street

The perfect ballet for lovers and dreamers alike, this repertory program includes works by New York City Ballet’s Peter Martins, Twyla Tharp, and a world premiere by Belgian-born choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. Set against a landscape of crimson reds and icy blues, Peter Martins’s Fearful Symmetries is a complex ballet at the head of the contemporary class. Couples create unusual shapes as John Adams’s racing score leads to a high impact ensemble finish. Annabelle Lopez Ochoa is a versatile choreographer that has created works for the Scapino Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, and the Royal Ballet of Flanders, among others, that are largely concept-driven and explore human relationships. Twyla Tharp pays tribute to legendary crooner in Nine Sinatra Songs through graceful ballroom dancing and elegant costumes created from Oscar de la Renta designs. Couples explore the complexities of relationships as they dance to timeless hits like “Strangers in the Night,” “That’s Life” and “My Way.”


Cinderella

Choreography by Ben Stevenson (Music: Sergei Prokofiev)
March 13 - 21
Academy of Music
Broad and Locust Streets

The rags-to-riches tale of Cinderella has captured the hearts of children and adults for generations. A glass slipper, an opulent stagecoach, a lavish wedding and happily ever after are at the heart of this enchanted production. Gilded with Ben Stevenson’s regal choreography, featuring romantic partnering and the laugh-out-loud antics of the wicked stepsisters, Cinderella is a ballet lover’s dream come true. Exquisite costumes, spectacular sets and Sergei Prokofiev’s sumptuous score complete this charming production.


Tango with Style

World Premiere: Choreography by Matthew Neenan
Barber Violin Concerto: Choreography by Peter Martins (Music: Samuel Barber)
COMPANY PREMIERE
Five Tangos: Choreography by Hans van Manen (Music: Astor Piazzolla)
COMPANY PREMIERE
May 6 - 10
Merriam Theater at the University of the Arts
250 S. Broad Street

Choreographer in Residence Matthew Neenan creates his 10th work for the Company on a program that also includes two Company premieres. Bathed in white, two couples take the stage for an intensity-filled series of pas de deux in the Company premiere of Peter Martins’s Barber Violin Concerto. The piece embodies the lyrical movement of Samuel Barber’s inventive work that bridges from an opening adagio to its final scherzo, exploring the dichotomy between classical ballet and modern dance in three movements. Audiences will be seduced by the passion of traditional Argentinean tango when married with ballet. Dutch choreographer Hans van Manen finds a place in Pennsylvania Ballet’s repertoire with his 1977 work Five Tangos, driven by a fiery score from the master of tango nuevo Astor Piazzolla.


La Sylphide

Choreography after August Bournonville (Music: Herman Lovenskjold)
June 5 – 13
Academy of Music
Broad and Locust Streets

Returning to the Academy of Music stage after a 21-year absence for a special 45th season finale is La Sylphide, widely recognized as the oldest ballet in existence. With its blend of charm, infatuation, ethereal delights and a dash of comic relief, La Sylphide ushered in the reign of the romantic ballet. When a young Scottish farmer abandons his bride-to-be for a beautiful winged creature, he offends not only the wedding party, but also the witch who heralds his demise. Bournonville’s ambitious choreography demands prolonged pointe work and exudes the innocence of youth. Yet, for all its technical influence and thematic whimsy, La Sylphide cautions that the grass isn’t always greener.

2008 – 2009 Season Subscriptions are available by calling 215.893.1955. Full season subscription prices range from $95 to $515. Subscribers receive many benefits over single ticket purchasers including a 20% discount, priority seating, convenient partial payment plan, easy ticket exchanges, discounts to fine restaurants and other area cultural institutions, advance ticket purchasing for
Pennsylvania Ballet also offers a Family Matinee Series which includes a free Family Day event on the day of the show. Family Day is a fun-filled celebration featuring entertainment, games and craft activities, as well as autograph opportunities with some of the featured dancers. The Family Matinee Series performances this season are as follows: George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker on Saturday, December 13, Cinderella on Saturday, March 14 and La Sylphide on Saturday, June 6.

Pennsylvania Ballet’s 2008-2009 season sponsors include The Sporting Club at the Bellevue and 10 Arts by Eric Ripert.

Pennsylvania Ballet receives support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development.

Founded in 1963 by Balanchine student and protégée Barbara Weisberger, Pennsylvania Ballet is one of the nation’s leading ballet companies. Headquartered in Philadelphia, the Company’s annual local season features six productions of classic favorites and new works, including the Philadelphia holiday tradition, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker.

#2 carbro

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 08:56 PM

Thanks, Figurante! Interesting and varied season!

I look forward to hearing (or maybe even seeing, if I'm ambitious) how Push fares. The last time ABT revived it, despite good individual performances, it was flatter than a pancake. I wondered whether it had outlived its time.

The choreography of La Sylphide is credited "after Bournonville." Do you know whether it is Martins after B'ville? I know his staging was controversial, but on the whole, I rather liked it.

#3 Figurante

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 02:30 PM

Thanks, Figurante! Interesting and varied season!

I look forward to hearing (or maybe even seeing, if I'm ambitious) how Push fares. The last time ABT revived it, despite good individual performances, it was flatter than a pancake. I wondered whether it had outlived its time.

The choreography of La Sylphide is credited "after Bournonville." Do you know whether it is Martins after B'ville? I know his staging was controversial, but on the whole, I rather liked it.



Push Comes to Shove really IS a fabulous ballet! It is full of humor and nuances, and I think Pennsylvania Ballet has the right group of personalities to make it a success.... I had the opportunity to dance it a few seasons ago with another company, and it was received incredibly well! There are so many things going on in each section of the ballet, it is almost as if you don't know where to look. I personally feel it is exactly that, which makes it so interesting. It takes incredible stamina to get through the ballet. Especially for the principal man. It will definitely be a satisfying challenge for any undertakers!

As far as La Sylphide, I have heard who may be staging it, and it would be AMAZING!!!!!, but since nothing is in print, my lips are defaultly bound. :innocent:

There are so many ballet's that I am excited about. Kazimir Colours being one of them. I had the opportunity to see Zurich Ballet perform the work, and it was incredibly captivating. Especially since the other two bills on the program were Concerto Barocco and Apollo, and, sadly, were staged, and danced completely ineffectively and wrong. I almost fell out of my chair out of grief. I was sitting next to a founding member of PNB, and she and I exchanged 'ho-hums' and gasps from so many discrepancies! In any rate, from what I remember of Kazimir Colours it is more contemporary with really interesting, colorful costumes and was refreshing after my almost heart-attack.

I am always a fan of Nine Sinatra Songs even though some view it as slightly campy. It's a great bill for the age group of the Philadelphia audience. I have no doubt it will be received well.

Lastly, I think it is fabulous that Pennsylvania Ballet will have the opportunity to work with Martin's in two of his ballet's for next season. It should be a great boost for the coined "baby Balanchine" company that Pennsylvania Ballet is considered!


All in all, the 45th Anniversary season's repertoire is quite diverse! I think it will challenge and showcase the Pennsylvania dancers and company extremely well!

#4 Rosa

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 04:36 PM

What a diverse and interesting season! Very exciting.

Does anyone know if Pennsylvania Ballet's upcoming Cinderella is the same version currently preformed by ABT?

#5 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 05 March 2008 - 05:00 PM

No - ABT's current version is by James Kudelka. This one is an older version by Ben Stevenson - ABT has done it in the past, I believe.

#6 Figurante

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Posted 06 March 2008 - 04:53 PM

I am a little worried about how Cinderella will fare. I have not seen the version, but after Stevenson's Dracula this season, I am hoping for something a little less theactrical and more choreographically convincing/less awkward.


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