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ABT: Fall '03 Season at City Center

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This just in from the company.




Preview From Full-Length Raymonda and Revival of Pillar of Fire Also Planned

American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 Fall Season at New York's City Center was announced today by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie. The 2003 season will expand to three weeks, October 22-November 9, for the first time since ABT began its regular fall engagement at City Center in 1997.

Highlighting the City Center engagement will be the Company Premiere of William Forsythe’s workwithinwork and the World Premiere of Robert Hill’s Dorian, based on the novel by Oscar Wilde. The season will also feature a preview of Raymonda (Grand Pas Classique) from its new full-length ballet with choreography by Anna-Marie Holmes after Marius Petipa. Revivals scheduled for the season include Antony Tudor’s Pillar of Fire, Agnes de Mille’s Three Virgins and a Devil and Sir Frederick Ashton’s Symphonic Variations.

American Ballet Theatre’s City Center season will begin with an Opening Night Gala on Wednesday evening, October 22 at 7:00 p.m. featuring all of ABT’s Principal Dancers performing selections of the season’s works.

American Ballet Theatre’s City Center season is sponsored by UBS, ABT’s National Presenting Sponsor, and Movado Watch Company, a leading benefactor. ABT’s 2003 City Center season is made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency.

Company Premieres

The Company Premiere of workwithinwork on Friday evening, October 24 will be ABT’s first-ever presentation of the work of William Forsythe, renownedchoreographer and Artistic Director of the Frankfurt Ballet. workwithinwork is set to the music of Luciano Berio and Thom Willems with costumes by Stephen Galloway and lighting by William Forsythe. The ballet received its World Premiere by the Frankfurt Ballet in October, 1998.

The Company Premieres of Jiri Kylian’s Petite Mort and Sechs Tänze are scheduled for Thursday evening, October 30. Set to the music of Wolfgang Mozart, Petite Mort features costumes by Joke Visser and Sechs Tänze features costumes and scenery by Jiri Kylian. Petite Mort was given its World Premiere by Netherlands Dans Theatre I in August, 1991, and Sechs Tänze received its World Premiere by NDT I in October, 1986. ABT has previously performed Kylian’s Sinfonietta and Stepping Stones.

Christian Spuck’s Le Grand Pas de Deux will be given its Company Premiere at the Saturday, October 25 matinee. Set to Gioachino Rossini’s overture from The Thieving Magpie, Le Grand Pas de Deux features costumes by Nicole Siggelkow. The ballet was first performed by the Stuttgart Ballet in 1999.

World Premiere and a Preview

The World Premiere of Dorian by Robert Hill is scheduled for Thursday evening, October 30. Based on the Oscar Wilde novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Dorian is set to the music of Ernest Chausson, orchestrated by Jon Magnussen and features sets and costumes by Zack Brown. Dorian will be Mr. Hill’s fourth work for the Company including Baroque Game (1999), Marimba (2001) and Concerto No. 1 for Piano and Orchestra (2002).

On Thursday, October 23, ABT will preview an excerpt from the full-length Raymonda, choreographed by Anna-Marie Holmes after Marius Petipa. Raymonda, a ballet in two acts is a co-production with the Finnish National Ballet and will be given its ABT premiere during the Company’s 2004 Metropolitan Opera House season. This new production, which received its World Premiere by the Finnish National Ballet in May of this year, was conceived and directed by Anna-Marie Holmes and Kevin McKenzie and generously underwritten by Patricia Hagan. Set to the music of Alexander Glazounov, Raymonda was first performed at the Maryinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg in January, 1898. For its City Center season, ABT will preview the Grand Pas Classique from Raymonda for six performances.


Antony Tudor’s Pillar of Fire, created for American Ballet Theatre in 1942, will receive its Revival Premiere on Thursday, October 23. Set to the music of Arnold Schoenberg, ABT’s new production of Pillar of Fire will feature scenery and costumes by Robert Perdziola. ABT last presented the ballet in 1990 for the Company's 50th Anniversary season. Pillar of Fire’s revival will be staged by Donald Mahler.

Agnes de Mille’s Three Virgins and a Devil, will be given its Revival Premiere at the Saturday, October 25 matinee. Last presented by ABT in 1993, Three Virgins and a Devil is set the music of Ottorino Respighi with a scenario written by Ramon Reed. Scenery and costumes by Motley are supervised by John Jensen. ABT’s revival of de Mille’s Three Virgins and a Devil will be staged by Dennis Nahat.

Symphonic Variations, created by Sir Frederick Ashton in 1946, was first performed by ABT in 1992. Set to the music of Cesar Franck with scenery and costumes by Sophie Fedorovitch, Symphonic Variations will have its Revival Premiere on Thursday, October 23. Wendy Somes will stage the ballet for ABT.

American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 City Center season will be presented in three separate programs and will also feature Family Friendly Matinees on Saturday and Sunday afternoon performances. Additional repertory scheduled for the season includes George Balanchine’s Theme and Variations, Jerome Robbins’ Fancy Free, Martha Graham’s Diversion of Angels, Nacho Duato’s Without Words, classical pas de deux and Within You Without You: A Tribute to George Harrison.


ABTKids, a special performance for families, is scheduled for Saturday, November 1 at 11:30 a.m. This one-hour presentation is narrated by members of ABT and features a full orchestra. All tickets for ABTKids are priced at $15. Reckson Associates is the official corporate sponsor of ABTKids.


ABTTalks, pre-curtain discussions held one hour prior to performances, are free to ABT ticket holders at City Center. A detailed schedule will be announced at a later date.

Tickets for American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 City Center season are priced from $30 to $80. Discounts for packages of two and three performances are available beginning July 1 by calling CityTix at 212-581-1212. The box office will open on September 2. City Center is located at West 55th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues in New York City.

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Some (but not all) audience members at the June 24 performance received program inserts announcing ABT's fall season at City Center. It's never too early to start planning! Other than Opening Night, there are four fixed programs:

Wednesday, October 22

Opening Night

Symphonic Variations

Three Virgins and a Devil

two pas de deux

Theme & Variations

Thursday, October 23 Program #1:

Diversion of Angels

Symphonic Variations

Pillar of Fire

Raymonda -- Grand Pas Classique

Friday, October 24 Program #2:

Without Words


Within You Without You: Tribute to George Harrison

Saturday Matinee, October 25, Family Friendly Program:

Theme & Variations

Three Virgins and a Devil

two pas de deux

Fancy Free

Saturday Evening, October 26: Program #2

Sunday, October 26, Matinee: Family Friendly Program

Sunday Evening, October 26: Program 1

Tuesday, October 28: Program #1

Wednesday, October 29: Program #2

Thursday, October 30: Program #3

Petit Mort

Sechs Tanze

Dorian (World Premiere)

Friday, October 31: Program #3

Saturday Matinee, November 1: Family Friendly Program

Saturday Evening, November 1: Program #1

Sunday Matinee, November 2: Family Friendly Program

Sunday Evening, November 2: Program #3

Tuesday, November 4: Program #2

Wednesday, November 5: Program #1

Thursday, November 6: Program #3

Friday, November 7: Program #1

Saturday Matinee, November 8: Family Friendly Program

Saturday Evening, November 8: Program #3

Sunday Matinee, November 9: Family Friendly Program

Sunday Evening, November 9: Program #2

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This season looks very exiting to me. But the ticket prices - the lowest being $30 - are prohibitive. What gets me, it they will just give away a lot of them during the season for free.

I'm happy to see Symphonic Variations brought back. What an extraordinary ballet. Plus, ABT's roots will be on view with Pillar, Fancy Free, T&V, and the de Mille ballet. And a sneak at the new Raymonda. I'll have to start saving up.

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Very interesting program indeed. I know it is very early yet but what would be B-Alerters wishes for casting in some of the ballets( Pillar, Symphonic, Raymonda) Ms Meunier would be great as Raymonda.

M Van Hamel was a great Raymonda. Wishful thinking as it may be, i hope Kevin ask MVH to coach this role.


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At risk of prematurely counting chickens, many among my gang are bated-breathedly waiting to see Michele W. in the Raymonda.

Flip side: that damn (beautiful) score that gets in the head and stays there. Da da dum, da da dum dum, da dum, da da dum dum, . . .

:) ;)

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Originally posted by Dale

This season looks very exiting to me.  But the ticket prices - the lowest being $30 - are prohibitive.

In 2000, there were $12 (?) seats in the upper balcony, depending on how well sold any particular night was, usually only made available as the date neared. Based on attendance at the Met this season, as well as last year at City Center, it is not likely that there will be many (if any) low-cost seats. There were none last year that I knew of.

I wish the Powers understood that by lowering prices, or offering a few rows of seats at a lower price, they would fill more seats on more nights and ultimately take in more money. It is a self-defeating pricing policy.

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Originally posted by zerbinetta

Ah, but what about that "W" program? .. eek.

Oh, I thought it was the Preposition Program.

Hermann in T&V and as The Devil in the DeMille would be a treat.

Carreno as The Man Across the Way?

I'd shell out $30 bucks for Meunier's Hagar if it were the only thing on the program that interested me!:D And if she were doing it with Carreno, so much the better!
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Yes, indeedy, that would would be a fine Pillar. Robert Hill is wonderful in the true love role; do we know if he's still dancing?

Do we need a thread about Dancers Who Have Disappeared without Notice? I was wondering what happened to Jerry Douglas, who had a promising season last summer, despite being too big for the small boy roles in which he was cast.

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It wouldn't be because he couldn't dance it or wouldn't be musical, but I think of that part for a Danseur Noble and I think Cornejo is not that style of dancer, at least he hasn't been cast that. I guess with today's relaxed style of casting, he might work his way up to T&V. De Luz did T&V once a few summers ago when many of the company's male dancers were injured (they even imported Woetzel to dance the role across the plaza with Kent). It was the most classical De Luz looked. He took the assignment very seriously (he partnered Tuttle), but it still wasn't the right casting.

Of course, I forgot to add Nina Ananiashvili for Raymonda. She's a great Raymonda. I guess I agree with Robert Gottlieb's latest column in the New York Observer. There are too many good/great female dancers at soloist and principal level, but with the company so obsessed with its male dancers, there aren't that many great evening-length ballets with lots of solo women's parts. Raymonda is a great female role (and I do wish Martine Van Hamel would coach that part). And there are several nice soloist and demi-soloist women's parts.

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I do see H. Cornejo in the danseur noble roles but agree that it remains to be seen since he hasn't been cast that way yet. I hope he will be.

DeLuz did very well in that T&V, yes, but whether he would have become a prince/poet is likely to be moot now.

I'm afraid we'll get Irina D in the Raymonda, too, but perhaps good coaching of the MvH sort would help.

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Sorry, Leigh, didn't see your post until after I'd responded to Dale's.

Reyes, E. Cornejo & Cojocaru, should she return (please please) are all small enough for HC, as is McKerrow, but I don't think she does fall season plus she seems to be limiting her roles of late & perhaps permanently.

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zerbinetta, I tossed out De Luz's name because he was a dancer, like Cornejo, who is not a danseur noble who did the role recently at ABT. But he was filling in for an injured dancer and did not do the role again.

I'd love to see David Hallberg in the role.

Who should be in Symphonic Variations? Ashton felt three small dancers should be cast in the leads. But Michael Somes, when he set the ballet on ABT, was surprised when three taller dancers worked out nicely. The three should be of like minds - hard to find at ABT exactly.

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Actually, JdL did two T&Vs but, yes, due to another's injury.

Ah, Symphonic Variations. I'll be so happy to see it again at all, I may not be terribly particular about casting/sizes.

I did feel Hallberg should have made Soloist; he's been dancing solo roles for two seasons now &, with the minimum two-year-as-Soloist policy they seem to have at Ballet Theatre, wouldn't make Principal until 2006 at least, by which time he'll probably be doing Principal roles for three years. pfoo ..

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zerbinetta has asked:

Do we need a thread about Dancers Who Have Disappeared without Notice? I was wondering what happened to Jerry Douglas, who had a promising season last summer, despite being too big for the small boy roles in which he was cast.

As far as I know, the only thread that dealt directly with this was about former NYCB dancers.

Why not start a generic "Where are they now?" thread in the Dancer's forum, zerbinetta?

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C Harvey, A Tuttle and Sandra Brown,i think, were in the original cast.Ashley and Sandra are still around so they just have to find the 3rd(or main) ballerina.

            Carbro, you( as always) hit the bullseye, w/ M Wiles casting.


Anybody knows if there is a "trust"( similar to BalanchineTrust) supervising the staging Ashton ballets?S Variations will be staged by Wendy Somes.Did Michael Somes "owned" the rights to the ballet?

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