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Ballet Nouveau Colorado May 5 2007

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Last weekend being a sparse one for the performing arts in Denver, the only thing that I could find to go to was the season finale for Ballet Nouveau Colorado. Well, it turned out to be much better than I anticipated. I thought that they did an admirable job, in spite of having to overcome the 2 obstacles of a budget that allows a maximum salary of (IIRC) $450/week for dancers and a stage that was so small that it really was insufficient for 8 dancers.

Like last weekend's Doug Varone and Dancers program, this one featured 3 separate pieces. And like the Doug Varone and Dancers program, the dances expressed a mood rather than told a story. Unlike last weekend's Doug Varone and Dancers program, the choreography was an interpretation of the music. While I've never danced, the movements seemed to me to be a lot more physically difficult than anything in the DVaD show.

The three pieces were: Game Piece, choreographed by Amy Seiwert to Terry Riley's Sunrise of the Planetary Dreamer and G Song; In Between Dreams, choreographed by (outgoing artistic director) Robert Mills to music by Arvo Part and Gustav Mahler; and Dusty Heat, choreographed by Lee Wei Chao to music by Peter Ludwig. The first and third clearly fit into the "ballet" category, while I would consider the second to be "modern dance". All 3 impressed me far more than anything that Doug Varone did. Breaks in the dancing were purposeful, with the dancers maintaining a pose. My favorite was the second dance (Arvo Part RULES!!!). Since I'm not able to comment on the technical aspects, there's not a whole lot more that I can say.

An interesting sidenote: the first movement of In Between Dreams was set to a very sparse piano piece by Arvo Part. The seats in the theatre were quite squeaky, and it was fascinating how many people became fidgety when listening to something that had as much silence as sound.

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