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City Ballet 2016-2017 Season

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I'm going to be in New York next January through May, so I'm purchasing a choose your own subscription series. This is my first time ever buying a NYCB subscription - does anyone have any advice before I make the purchases? (i.e. does one get better tickets by calling them up or is it ok to do online, are there some categories of tickets that I should avoid, or is there something else I haven't even thought of yet?)

NYCB has maybe one of the most generous subscription privileges of any company. Free exchanges, discounts, and often (if you go up to the box office before curtain time) some upgrades to better seats. You really can't go wrong. All subscriptions are in the orchestra, first or second ring. I'd avoid orchestra side seats.

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Official release about the Fall Fashion Gala:





Choreographer JUSTIN PECK and Designer DRIES VAN NOTEN

Choreographer PETER WALKER and Designer JASON WU

New York City Ballet’s Fifth Annual Fall Fashion Gala

Conceived by SARAH JESSICA PARKER and Co-Chaired by Parker and NORIKO “DAISY LIN” MAEDA

Takes Place on Tuesday, September 20, 2016 at Lincoln Center

On September 20, 2016, New York City Ballet will open its 2016-17 Season at Lincoln Center with the fifth anniversary of its annual Fall Fashion Gala, featuring an evening of world premiere ballets created by an internationally-acclaimed roster of choreographers and fashion designers.

This year’s edition will include world premiere ballets by choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, featuring costumes designed by Rosie Assoulin; NYCB Principal Dancer Lauren Lovette, who will make her first-ever work for NYCB, featuring costumes designed by Narciso Rodriguez; NYCB Resident Choreographer and Soloist Justin Peck, featuring costumes designed by Dries Van Noten; and NYCB Corps de Ballet member Peter Walker, who will make his first-ever work for the Company, featuring costumes designed by Jason Wu. The lighting design for each of the world premiere ballets will be created by NYCB’s Resident Lighting Designer Mark Stanley.

Conceived by NYCB Board Vice Chair Sarah Jessica Parker, and launched in 2012 with a gala celebration of the legendary designer Valentino, NYCB’s Fall Fashion Gala has since featured costumes designed by Thom Browne, Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Peter Copping for Oscar de la Renta, Prabal Gurung, Carolina Herrera, Mary Katrantzou, Humberto Leon of Opening Ceremony and Kenzo,

Hanako Maeda of ADEAM, Marta Marques and Paulo Almeida of Marques’Almeida, Zuhair Murad, Olivier

Theyskens, Iris Van Herpen, and Valentino, who have designed costumes for works by choreographers Robert Binet, Peter Martins, Benjamin Millepied, Justin Peck, Angelin Preljocaj, Liam Scarlett, Troy Schumacher, Myles Thatcher, and Christopher Wheeldon.

Since the inception of the first Fall Fashion Gala in 2012, the annual event has raised more than $10 million for New York City Ballet. For the fifth anniversary of the event, Noriko “Daisy Lin” Maeda will join Parker as a co-chairman, and the evening will also feature a retrospective look at many of the designs that have been constructed over the past five years by the NYCB Costume Shop in collaboration with the designers and NYCB’s Director of Costumes Marc Happel.

World Premiere by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa Costumes Designed by Rosie Assoulin

Internationally-acclaimed choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa will make her first-ever work for the Company, which will be set to a selection of scores written for cello by composers Luigi Boccherini, Edward Elgar, and Peteris Vasks. Of Colombian and Belgian descent, Lopez Ochoa studied at the Royal Ballet School of Antwerp, and was a soloist with Scapino Ballet Rotterdam. In 2003, she stopped dancing to focus solely on choreography and has made works for dance companies around the world including the Dutch National Ballet, Cuban National Ballet, West-Australian Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Joffrey Ballet. In 2012 she created the choreography for the Scottish Ballet’s award-winning production A Streetcar Named Desire. In the fall of 2007, Lopez Ochoa participated in a working session at the New York Choreographic Institute, an affiliate of New York City Ballet.

The costumes for Lopez Ochoa’s premiere will be created by designer Rosie Assoulin, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, where she first used her grandmother’s sewing machine at the age of 13 to experiment with pattern, texture, and style as a means of exploring her identity. Fifteen years later, and after honing her skills under the tutelage of her mentor, and future mother-in-law, jewelry designer

Roxanne Assoulin, as well as two of her childhood idols -- Oscar de la Renta and Alber Elbaz -- Assoulin launched her eponymous label with a Resort 2014 debut collection and in 2015, won the CFDA’s Swarovski Award for Womenswear. At its core, her design aesthetic bridges the line between effortless elegance and the romantically fantastical – a blend of sculpted ease and bold lines.

World Premiere by Lauren Lovette Costumes Designed by Narciso Rodriguez

NYCB Principal Dancer Lauren Lovette will choreograph her first-ever work for a ballet company, which will be set to Robert Schumann’s Introduction and Concert Allegro, Op. 134. Born in California, Lovette began studying ballet at the age of 11 at the Cary Ballet Conservatory in Cary, North Carolina. She attended summer courses at the School of American Ballet (SAB), the official school of New York City Ballet, in the summers of 2004 and 2005, and enrolled at SAB as a full-time student in 2006. She became a member of the NYCB corps de ballet in 2010, was promoted to Soloist in 2013, and became a Principal Dancer in 2015. In addition to her work as a dancer, Lovette began choreographing while a student at SAB where she participated in the School’s annual choreography workshops in 2008 and 2009. In the summer of 2012, Lovette also participated in a working session of the New York Choreographic Institute.

The costumes for Lovette’s premiere will be designed by Narciso Rodriguez, one of America’s foremost fashion designers. Raised in Newark, New Jersey, Rodriguez received his formal education at Parsons The New School for Design, and worked at Anne Klein, under Donna Karan, before moving to Calvin Klein where he worked on the Women’s Collection. Rodriguez later held Design Director positions at TSE, Cerruti, and Loewe before establishing his own atelier in New York City in 2001. Rodriguez has won numerous design awards, and in 2002 and 2003 he was the first designer ever to win consecutive Womenswear Designer of the Year awards from the Council of Fashion Designers of America. In 2005, Time Magazine honored the designer by naming him one of the “25 Most Influential Hispanics in America.” In addition to his career in fashion, Rodriguez has also created designs for films and the stage, including collaborations with choreographers such as Christopher Wheeldon, Jonah Bokaer, and Stephen Petronio.

World Premiere by Justin Peck

Costumes Designed by Dries Van Noten

For the 2016 Fall Fashion Gala NYCB Soloist and Resident Choreographer Justin Peck will create a pas de deux set to the second movement of Bohuslav Martinů’s Piano Quintet No. 2. Peck also used a score by Martinů for the ballet Paz de la Jolla, which he created for NYCB in 2013.

Since creating his first work for NYCB in 2012, Peck has become one of the ballet world’s most in-demand choreographers with recent commissions from such companies as San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, L.A. Dance Project, and the Paris Opera Ballet. Born in Washington, DC, Peck spent his formative years in San Diego, California, where he studied at the California Ballet, prior to beginning his training at the School of American Ballet in 2003. He joined NYCB in 2007 and was promoted to Soloist in 2013. In 2009, Peck participated in his first working session at the New York Choreographic Institute, and in 2011 was awarded with the Institute’s first year-long choreographic residency. In 2012 he created In Creases, his first work for NYCB, and has since created a total of 10 ballets for the Company. In 2014, Peck was named NYCB’s Resident Choreographer, only the second person to hold that title in NYCB history.

The costumes for Peck’s ballet will be designed by Dries Van Noten, the Belgian designer, who was born in Antwerp and is the third generation of a family of tailors. Part of the famed Antwerp Six, a group of fashion designers who graduated from the Antwerp Royal Academy of Fine Arts in the early 1980s and went on to establish Antwerp as an important center for visionary fashion design, Van Noten launched his debut collection in 1986 to international acclaim. The same year he opened his first eponymous boutique in Antwerp’s gallery arcade, carrying both men’s and women’s collections, which were initially made from the same fabrics. Today the label, which includes womenswear and menswear collections, as well as accessories, is carried in free-standing boutiques and department stores around the world, and is headquartered in a 60,000 square foot warehouse space in Antwerp. In 2008 Van Noten was awarded the prestigious International Award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America; and in 2014 the first major museum exhibition of his work, Dries Van Noten – Inspirations, opened at the Les Arts Décoratifs in Paris.

World Premiere by Peter Walker Costumes Designed by Jason Wu

NYCB Corps de Ballet member Peter Walker will make his first-ever work for NYCB, which will be set to an original score by Thomas Kikta, a classical guitarist and professor of music at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Walker and Kikta have previously collaborated on a work for the School of American Ballet’s annual Winter Ball in 2015. Born in Fort Myers, Florida, Walker started his ballet training with former NYCB Principal Dancer Melinda Roy at the Gulfshore Ballet. Walker began his studies at the School of American Ballet during the 2006 summer course, enrolled as a full-time student in the winter of 2007, and joined the NYCB corps de ballet in 2012. Walker has also participated in working sessions at the New York Choreographic Institute in 2011 and 2012, and has created works for students at SAB for the School’s 2015 and 2016 Winter Balls.

The costumes for Walker’s ballet will be designed by Jason Wu, who was born in Taipei, Taiwan, and at the age of nine moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, where he first began designing and sewing, using dolls as mannequins. Wu spent his senior year of high school in Paris and then moved to New York City to enroll at Parsons The New School for Design. Wu debuted his first Ready-to-Wear collection in

New York City in 2007 and today more than 90% of the Jason Wu Collection is manufactured in the city’s

Garment District. Wu has received many accolades, including being named one of the finalists in the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund in July 2008. In June 2010 he won the Swarovski Award for Womenswear at the CFDA Fashion Awards and in April 2011 he was nominated for the CFDA/Swarovski Award for Accessory Design. Wu was appointed Artistic Director of Hugo Boss womenswear Ready to Wear and

Accessory collection in June 2013. More recently, Wu was honored with the Fashion Star Award at The Fashion Group International Night of Stars 2015, and won the 2016 International Designer of Year at the Canadian Arts & Fashion Awards.


Benefit-priced tickets for the gala evening, which include the 7 p.m. performance, a pre-performance reception, and black-tie supper ball following the performance, are available through the NYCB Special Events Office at 212-870-5585 and at nycballet.com/fallgala. Tickets for the performance only start at just $30 and will be available beginning August 7 at nycballet.com, by calling 212-496-0600, or at the David H. Koch Theater box office, located at West 63rd Street and Columbus Avenue.

Major support for new work is provided by members of the New Combinations Fund.

The Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation has generously provided support for new work by Lauren Lovette and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. Major support for Lauren Lovette’s new ballet is also generously provided by Malo and John Harrison, with additional support from Karin Schwalb. Funding for Lauren Lovette’s new work is also provided by The Rudolf Nureyev Fund for Emerging Choreographers, established through a leadership grant from the Rudolf Nureyev Dance Foundation, with additional grants from the Harriet Ford Dickenson Foundation and the Joseph and Sylvia Slifka Foundation, to support New York City Ballet’s commissioning of emerging choreographers.

The Travelers Companies, Inc. is the Global Sponsor of New York City Ballet.

Ruinart is the Official Champagne of New York City Ballet.

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Don't know if this is the appropriate place to put this - (probably not - but it was the closest that I could come up with in the limited time I have to search) ... but David Prottas it seems has joined the ensemble of the National (US) Tour of AN AMERICAN IN PARIS

Source: http://www.broadwayworld.com/article/AN-AMERICAN-IN-PARIS-Announces-Full-Casting-for-US-Tour-20160809#

Sad in a way - as I thought he was excellent in Ratmansky's PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION during the couple of performances he gave with NYCB in Paris, and he always seemed to stand out for his commitment otherwise.

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Thinking about seeing NYCB 'The Sleeping Beauty' for the first time. Does anybody know when they will announce the casting? Also, any advice/opinions about the production in general and THE cast to see would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks a lot in advance!

Edited by Waelsung
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Re Society NYCB -- In case any of you have been waiting for your renewal letters, I wanted to share my experience. The renewal letter was sent out in that huge 2016-2017 brochure they sent out around the beginning of August. The letter was tucked into the brochure. Since this looked like just another brochure (and I, like probably most Society NYCB members, am already well aware of what's on for the upcoming year), I nearly tossed it straight into the recycling bin. When I happened to open it later, a sheet of paper fell out. That was the renewal letter. If you missed it, I believe that you can still renew by calling the box office. You still have time -- the letter said the renewal was October 31. 

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I looked at Kowroski's Instagram and after the Paris run she mentioned having some new injuries. Bad news. I will miss her in Vienna Waltzes. I see Reichlen is debuting in the final section. Wish they would give Ashley Laracey a chance at that. I think I read somewhere that Laracey did that section sometime long in the past -- does anyone recall? I hope that some of the new choreography debuting on Sept 20 is worthy, and I look forward to reviews. I won't be there that night. 

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On August 31, 2016 at 3:38 AM, Waelsung said:

Thinking about seeing NYCB 'The Sleeping Beauty' for the first time. Does anybody know when they will announce the casting? Also, any advice/opinions about the production in general and THE cast to see would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks a lot in advance!

NYCB announces casting only 2 weeks before the performance, generally on a Tuesday. If casting for SL is similar to Nutcracker, the steady principals will get the first week and then we may see some Auroras from the soloist or corps ranks. SL is probably the best of Peter Martins' adaptations of classic ballets. When I saw it a few years ago, I saw Ashley Bouder and liked her but this year I'd probably rather see someone sweeter like Tiler Peck. I assume Sterling Hyltin will get opening night, since she usually gets opening nights. This year, I'd also really like to see an up and comer like Lauren King or Unity Phelan (who is getting all sort of lead roles). Hope that helps.

Edited by zobeide
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Week 3 casting is up. All-new cast for Stravinsky Violin Concerto (Lovette, Finlay, Mearns, Danchig-Waring) on Sept 29. Should be exciting. I am sorry that Emily Kikta is not getting another shot at the Tall Girl in Rubies. She was terrific last spring. 

I'd enjoy any comments about the premieres or last night's performance. 

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Saw the first two ballets on Thursday (ducked out before Vienna Waltzes). Great to see the company looking so energetic. Divertimento No. 15 was strong, clean, musical, and the whole cast seemed to have a real sense of camaraderie throughout. Tiler Peck's debut was absolutely fantastic, and her performance of the principal solo was among the best I've ever seen. Episodes is always a treat, and yet another chance to appreciate the depth of talent in the corps right now -- so much presence and charisma from so many of its most junior members! Looking forward to attending many more performances this fall season.

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I was East for a bat mitzvah last week, and all of my plans got scrambled.  I wasn't planning to be in the city on this trip, and Plan B was to go to my favorite knitting store downtown and then head back to Long Branch, but the friend who gave me a ride in said she needed to work late, and suggested looking for something playing and we could ride home together.  September has flown by so quickly that I didn't realize I was there for NYCB Opening Night, and I headed straight to the box office for one of the remaining tickets.


I've never been to the Fashion gala, but I've read plenty of snark about it. The program interested me on paper:  there was so much lead-up to Lauren Lovette's work, that I was eager to see how it worked out.  I've admired all of the Peck choreography that I've seen, and the work Lopez Ochoa did for Whim W'him last June, "Delicious Pesticides" is my favorite of hers.  Peter Walker is new to me.  But the main draw was to see so many young dancers that members here have written about and whom the critics have noticed.


Ironically, all of the men in the larger works were singular and impressive, whether solo, as partners, or in the ensemble, while I could barely remember Amar Ramasar in Peck's pas de deux, "The Dreamers.  To be fair, I'm not sure who could take attention away from Sara Mearns; she's a goddess, and I love the Martinu selection, a single movement from his Piano Quintet No 2.  In a solo in Walker's "ten in seven" Spartak Hoxha brought joyful virtuosity with no cheese, a much harder feat than it seems, but the men were just as strong and danced organically in ensemble, also harder than it seems considering how many of them came from the higher ranks,


I liked "The Dreamers" best of all -- I'd need to see it again to see if it was the choreography or the dancer and her dress -- but I was impressed by the ambitious pieces by Lovette (16 dancers) and Walker (10 dancers).  Each chose music with structure -- many choreographers starting out pick endless, atmospheric music, and the choreography doesn't really go anywhere -- but, in the end, I didn't find either score particularly inspiring for dance.  The Schumann was a single piece, but was all over the place temperamentally, and the ballet itself seemed to be running to catch up with the latest change.  The dancers looked good, but they didn't look great, and the work didn't seem to be particularly about them:  they were meeting the demands more than they were showcased.  It was good, but it looked more like a piece for Workshop dancers than the company dancers.


Peter Walker's work was to a series of pieces by Emily Kikta's father, Thomas Kikta.  I guess it was jazzy soft rock?  (If someone knows, please correct me.)  Walker had clearly thought out a lot, and there were plenty of quirky and unexpected movements, but I found the score surprisingly bland rhythm-wise:  it seemed to me that the dancers were trying to provide a rhythmic strength and drive that the music lacked.  Still, of all the works on the program, it had the most individual voice, and he gave wonderful roles to Hoxha and Indiana Woodward, who looked like a star in it. It would be great if he were mentored to go deeper into a smaller amount.  It wasn't kitchen-sink by any means, but it had a lot that didn't really tie together.  


Annabelle Lopez Ochoa's "Unframed" was set to a pastiche of composers -- Boccherini, Vasks, Elgar, and Vivaldi -- with cello as the centerpiece and the movements were only as inspired as the music.  I thought it had a strong start and that her choice of a selection from Vasks's haunting "Gramata Cellam (The Book) for Solo Cello" was inspired, although while Tiler Peck was very strong in it, she didn't seem to channel the music or follow its nuance or gravity.  Tyler Angle was superb as her partner.  I really wanted to like this piece, and Sterling Hyltin and Adrian Danchig-Waring gave it their best in the second Elgar, but I think the work had tired by then.  I would love to see what that pair would have done with the Vasks.  


I was shocked, and not in a good way, by "Bal de Couture."  The pieces that the PNB faculty do for the eight-year-olds at the student show are 10x more professional.  I did love the one dress with the multi-tiered skirt in black and cream with the cream-colored top:  swapping out the crinoline underskirt for softer fabric, it would make a fabulous Flamenco dress.


I liked almost all of the women's costumes in the first four works, and most of them, I liked a lot.  Mearn's dress was like an ad for the perfume "L'heure bleue," with it's Miro-like design, and it moved so beautifully.  I thought Rosie Assoulin's costumes for the women were inspired, and they worked well thematically and movement-wise.  She should do more ballet costumes.  However, the beach caftan has to go:  I saw her in the lobby not knowing who she was, and even fashion-challenged me couldn't suppress an eye-roll.  Imagine my surprise when she took a bow, and I realized she was the designer of such beautiful and creative things :speechless-smiley-003:.  Surely she could create something wonderful for herself.


The men's were more of a mixed bag.  Even Assoulin's jackets I found a bit distracting, but as the costumes became more spare as the piece went on, they were quite wonderful.  The men looked best the less they wore.  I'm usually not a fan of the bare-chested look, but it was much better than some of the wear they were encumbered with.


Last night at PNB, I was so mesmerized by one of the demis in the Second Movement of "Symphony in C," I forgot to watch the main couple.  I really wished for some of those eye-catching moments in this program, especially looking at the women in the casts lists, but, alas, there were none.  In that sense, the program was a non-starter.


As an FYI, I believe the announcer said it was Alexa Maxwell who replaced Brittany Pollack in the Lopez Ochoa.



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1 hour ago, Emma said:

Were the last promotions over a year ago?  Any thoughts on who's next?  Woodward seems to be making a great case for herself, dancing in two new ballets and subbing in Divert.

I also think she hasn't been in too many (if any) corps roles so far this season, which may be a sign of plans afoot (or so I hope!)


Company looked great in today's matinee -- lots of energy and everyone just felt more joyful. Maybe still feeding off the energy of last night's many debuts? It was particularly evident in Stravinsky Violin Concerto, where each and every dancer looked like they were having a ball.


Teresa Reichlen was MAGNIFICENT in Monumentum/Movements. I've never quite "gotten" the appeal of either piece, but with Reichlen at her full power (and partnered by Adrian Danchig-Waring, who seems to bring out the best in her), it finally clicked for me.


Megan Fairchild was really, really present in Duo Concertant, with a depth that I haven't always felt from her in previous performances of the role. She and Anthony Huxley have an intriguing dynamic, and they each are breathing new life into the work. 


Symphony in Three was probably the messiest on the program, but in more of an "everyone's dancing like a soloist" way than an "everyone's tired" way.


If the company continues to look as good as it has this week, it's going to be a really strong season.



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