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ABT's 75th anniversary celebration


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From the company:

AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE ANNOUNCES PLANS FOR

75th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION

Plans were announced today for American Ballet Theatre’s 75th Anniversary season by Kevin McKenzie, Artistic Director, and Rachel S. Moore, CEO. The 15-month long celebration will be highlighted by performances of ABT’s historic repertoire presented during the Company’s 2014 and 2015 seasons, a special PBS American Masters documentary by Ric Burns, a touring exhibit by the Library of Congress, a 75th Anniversary Gala and a new commemorative souvenir program.

HISTORIC REPERTOIRE

The span of American Ballet Theatre’s 75th Anniversary celebration will offer a retrospective of the Company’s vast repertoire performed at the Company’s

New York and tour venues. Works scheduled represent both the work of 20th century master choreographers most closely associated with Ballet Theatre, and newer works from leading 21st century choreographers. Beginning with the Fall season at the David H. Koch Theater, October 22-November 2, 2014, works such as Antony Tudor’s Jardin aux Lilas and Jerome Robbins’ Fancy Free will share the program with ballets by Liam Scarlett, Christopher Wheeldon and Alexei Ratmansky. ABT’s Spring season will feature ballets performed during the Company’s first decade which formed the foundation of ABT’s identity, including Michel Fokine’s

Les Sylphides, George Balanchine’s Theme and Variations (created for ABT in 1947), Tudor’s Pillar of Fire (created for ABT in1942) and Agnes de Mille’s Rodeo (given its ABT Premiere in 1950).

ALL-NEW PRODUCTION OF THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

The cornerstone of American Ballet Theatre’s 75th Anniversary celebration will be an all-new, full-length production of The Sleeping Beauty choreographed by

ABT Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky. Scheduled for its World Premiere on March 3, 2015 at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, the previously announced production of The Sleeping Beauty is set to the famous Tchaikovsky score, with scenery and costumes by Tony Award®-winning designer Richard Hudson. Hudson’s designs will be based on the historic work of Léon Bakst, who created a seminal version of The Sleeping Beauty for Serge Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes in 1921. ABT’s all-new version of The Sleeping Beauty is a co-production with Teatro alla Scala.

NEW WORKS

In keeping with American Ballet Theatre’s mission to encourage the creation of new works, the Company will present a new work by Liam Scarlett for Fall 2014 and by Mark Morris for Fall 2015. Scarlett’s new work, scheduled for its World Premiere on Wednesday, October 22, is set to music by Sergei Rachmaninoff and features costumes by Scarlett and lighting by Brad Fields. Details of the Fall 2015 World Premiere by Morris are still to be announced.

75th ANNIVERSARY GALA

A diamond anniversary Gala performance and evening is planned for Monday, May 18, 2015 at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York. The evening will feature performances spanning ABT’s seven and a half decades, with film excerpts of historic performances, interviews with major figures in the dance world and special guest appearances.

AMERICAN MASTERS – A FILM BY RIC BURNS

American Ballet Theatre’s 75th Anniversary and its extraordinary history will be the subject of a film by Emmy award-winning filmmaker Ric Burns to be featured on American Masters, PBS’ acclaimed biography series highlighting arts and culture. Scheduled for broadcast in May 2015, American Ballet Theatre: A Documentary Film combines intimate rehearsal footage and dramatic performances featuring the stars of today with interviews of many key figures from ABT’s past, present and future (Alicia Alonso, Donald Saddler, Frederic Franklin, Kevin McKenzie, Alexei Ratmansky). The film chronicles the Company from its modest beginnings on the eve of World War II to the present as one of the most respected dance companies on the world stage today.

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS EXHIBIT

A special exhibit at the Library of Congress, American Ballet Theatre: Touring the Globe for 75 Years, is on view August 14, 2014 through January 24, 2015 in the Performing Arts Reading Room at the Library of Congress’ James Madison Building. The exhibition celebrates the Company’s vibrant history, with objects drawn primarily from the Library of Congress’ American Ballet Theatre Collection, as well as from its extensive dance and music collections. The exhibition will travel to

the Library of Congress/Ira Gershwin Gallery at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in

Los Angeles, where it will be on view for six months (March 2015–August 2015). For more information, please visit www.loc.gov.

GUGGENHEIM WORKS & PROCESS

The Guggenheim Museum’s Works & Process performing arts series will present a three-part retrospective of American Ballet Theatre’s 75 years, April 19-20, 2015. Featuring repertory excerpts from ABT’s 2014-15 seasons, Works & Process’ combined format of seminar and performance will showcase the Company history and achievements in 25-year increments. Tickets are available beginning January 2015. For more information, please visit: http://www.guggenheim.org.

COMMEMORATIVE SOUVENIR PROGRAM

A new souvenir program will be issued for American Ballet Theatre’s Spring 2015 season. Combining historic photos with commissioned conceptual photos by renowned fashion and dance photographer Fabrizio Ferri, ABT’s 75th Anniversary souvenir program will include interviews with alumni and current dancers, along with essays on each quarter century of the Company’s history. ABT’s 75th Anniversary souvenir program will be offered for sale during performances beginning with the 2015 Spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House.

Subscriptions for American Ballet Theatre’s 2015 Spring Season at the Metropolitan Opera House are available by phone and online beginning October 27, 2014. For more information, please visit www.abt.org.

American Ballet Theatre gratefully acknowledges Lead Sponsor of

The Sleeping Beauty, David H. Koch. Additional leadership support is generously provided by the Lloyd E. Rigler - Lawrence E. Deutsch Foundation. Costume support for The Sleeping Beauty is generously provided by Linda Allard.

The Sleeping Beauty is generously supported through an endowed gift from

The Toni and Martin Sosnoff New Works Fund.

The Liam Scarlett World Premiere and New Mark Morris work are generously supported by the Toni and Martin Sosnoff Foundation and through an endowed gift from the Toni and Martin Sosnoff New Works Fund. Howard S. Paley is a Sponsor of the Liam Scarlett World Premiere.

Follow American Ballet Theatre on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ABTBallet

on Facebook at http://facebook.com/AmericanBalletTheatre

or on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/user/ABTBalletTheatre

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I'm so glad to see notice about the Burns film, which will give the bigger dance community a chance to see ABT at this milestone time -- I just wish that the company was touring more extensively as well.

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Thanks Dale. Interesting info. Still not clear to me if the May 18 gala is the start date for the season.

Although ABT has still not posted their spring schedule on their website, a glimpse of the first three weeks is available on the website of the Metropolitan Opera. The season begins May 11th, and the company is performing "Classic ABT" through the 16th. (No details are available, but clearly this is a repertory performance that will include some of the historical pieces mentioned in the press release.) The gala is on May 18th. From the 19th through the 21st they are performing Othello. Giselle runs from May 21st through the 28th, and The Sleeping Beauty begins on the 29th. The Met Opera schedule only runs through May, so that is the extent of the ABT schedule that is posted.

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Thanks Dale. Interesting info. Still not clear to me if the May 18 gala is the start date for the season.

Although ABT has still not posted their spring schedule on their website, a glimpse of the first three weeks is available on the website of the Metropolitan Opera. The season begins May 11th, and the company is performing "Classic ABT" through the 16th. (No details are available, but clearly this is a repertory performance that will include some of the historical pieces mentioned in the press release.) The gala is on May 18th. From the 19th through the 21st they are performing Othello. Giselle runs from May 21st through the 28th, and The Sleeping Beauty begins on the 29th. The Met Opera schedule only runs through May, so that is the extent of the ABT schedule that is posted.

I think I'm in the minority here, but I found ABT's last revival of Othello to be absolutely dreadful. I guess they needed another ballet in which Julie Kent could be thrown around like a rag doll. I really hope they are only doing it for three days, though it seems likely it will appear again later in the season (in the same way they split the Coppelia performances this last season). Fingers crossed for no Lady of the Camellias or Onegin.

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I'm not sure they will give Othello more than the four performances in May. It doesn't sell well. As noted, it gives Julie Kent something to do in her final season. I might be inclined to see Gomes, but I could not sit through this ballet more than once.

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Thanks art076. I never would have figured that out.

Does anyone know the logic of splitting up a full-length's run? ABT regularly does this, but having only 2 SB days on May 29/30 to then scratch the set for a week of Bayadere, to then bring back SB for 5 more days seems illogical to me.

Again, I wish they'd do more mixed rep during their Met seasons....

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They often split the run of a new production. Maybe they think that after the reviews are published regarding the first few performances of a new production, people will show up in larger numbers for the second run of the season.

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They often split the run of a new production. Maybe they think that after the reviews are published regarding the first few performances of a new production, people will show up in larger numbers for the second run of the season.

OK, that makes sense.

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The subscriptions go on sale on Oct 27, I suspect that all the casting (except for a few TBA's) will be available sometime next week, with a full press release regarding the season. That's how they have done it in the past, anyway.

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I guess the folks at ABT were not too pleased that this info was uncovered, because all of the ABT info has now vanished from the Met calendar. Not that there was any ever doubt, but this confirms that ABT reads the entries on this board. LOL.speechless-smiley-003.gif

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I guess the folks at ABT were not too pleased that this info was uncovered, because all of the ABT info has now vanished from the Met calendar. Not that there was any ever doubt, but this confirms that ABT reads the entries on this board. LOL.speechless-smiley-003.gif

I'm glad I printed everything out! Thanks to art076 for the heads-up earlier today! I hope ABT reads the pleas to revive Push Comes to Shove. (This reminds me of the mysteriously appearing and then disappearing rep lists for NYCB for 2014-15. I worried about posting that heads-up on this site, but those are the risks, I suppose!)

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I guess the folks at ABT were not too pleased that this info was uncovered, because all of the ABT info has now vanished from the Met calendar. Not that there was any ever doubt, but this confirms that ABT reads the entries on this board. LOL.speechless-smiley-003.gif

From memory, the remainder of the season is:

First week of June--La Bayadere

Second week of June--The Sleeping Beauty

Third week of June--Romeo and Juliet

Fourth week of June--Swan Lake

Last week through July 4th--Cinderella

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I guess the folks at ABT were not too pleased that this info was uncovered, because all of the ABT info has now vanished from the Met calendar. Not that there was any ever doubt, but this confirms that ABT reads the entries on this board. LOL.speechless-smiley-003.gif

Perhaps the press also didn't want to be scooped. These days they're so paranoid about their waning influence in the face of blogs and boards. It's all too funny.

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Is it me or does the rep sound a little boring? More of the same? I guess the mixed rep might be interesting. I think this could've been a good season to really do something slightly different. The new Sleeping Beauty is nice, but maybe this season could respect the past, but look towards the future. That is the impression I get from all the retirements, especially when paired with the major retirements in the past 5 years. (Well in this case the past is leaving quickly and the future isn't appearing or appearing without the proper coaching)

Casting will probably be even more interesting. We will probably either see a lot of debuts or an insane number of guest artists. Kevin's programing in starting to become stale and we all know how bad he is at developing talent. It would've been nice to see a new full length ballet, maybe Paquita or Flames of Paris. Maybe, even a national/international broadcast of a performance, with a video releasing later. So many good ballets or dancers to pick from. Also, if they plan on having Ratmansky slowly redo all their classics, might that be putting all their eggs in one basket. While I prefer Ratmansky over McKenzie any day, I think it might be better to diversify their repertory. How many more years can ABT continue to do the same ballets over and over?

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How many more years can ABT continue to do the same ballets over and over?

Well, considering they've been doing the same ballets (in different versions at times) over and over again for at least the last 40 years, I would say the answer is -- indefinitely! (That being said, they may be on the way to pricing themselves out of the market with their constant price increases.)

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How many more years can ABT continue to do the same ballets over and over?

Well, considering they've been doing the same ballets (in different versions at times) over and over again for at least the last 40 years, I would say the answer is -- indefinitely! (That being said, they may be on the way to pricing themselves out of the market with their constant price increases.)

That is so true about pricing. One of the problems with a reliance on full lengths is that it takes a big name to sell tickets. I would bet that the casual ballet goer that buys tickets to ABT thinks "guest artist" is always better.

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