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Boston Ballet and William Forsythe - establish partnership

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From the company:

BOSTON BALLET ANNOUNCES LONG-TERM PARTNERSHIP WITH

ESTEEMED CHOREOGRAPHER WILLIAM FORSYTHE

May 4, 2016 (BOSTON, MA)—Boston Ballet Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen is honored to announce a five-year partnership with internationally-renowned choreographer William Forsythe. The Company will add one new William Forsythe work to its repertoire each year, in addition to also presenting reprised works from the Company’s current repertoire. Nissinen and Forsythe will work together to select the programming for Boston Ballet, and the legendary choreographer and his assistants and stagers will work directly with the Company. This partnership will result in Boston Ballet having the richest collection of William Forsythe ballets in the United States.

To kick off the partnership during the 2016–2017 season, Boston Ballet will present Forsythe’s full-length ARTIFACT, February 23–March 5, 2017, at the Boston Opera House. The Company will be the first North American company to perform the full-length work. In February 2017, a BB@home program entitled “Focus on Forsythe” will be dedicated to Forsythe and his work; he will participate in the program and the Company will perform.

“I could not be more excited about this partnership. For me, and for Boston Ballet, it is a dream come true. Bill Forsythe is not only one of the greatest choreographers, he is a monumental modern artist,” explains Boston Ballet Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen. “I was fortunate to dance his ballets at San Francisco Ballet: the experience changed my dancing. I am super happy for our dancers to have this opportunity to dive deeper into his ballets and to work directly with Bill. Boston is one lucky city to have such extraordinary exposure to his incredible works. Fasten your seat belt, Boston!”

“I am so delighted to have the opportunity to spend so much time with this wonderful, fresh ensemble,” states William Forsythe. “Mikko's support of the work means that the dancers and I can deepen our wonderful relationship and I will have a new home for new ideas.”

Boston Ballet first presented Forsythe’s Love Songs in 1989. Since 2002, Mikko Nissinen has grown Boston Ballet’s Forsythe repertoire by four additional works: In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated (2002, 2005), The Vile Parody of Address (2008 Night of Stars), The Second Detail (2011, 2012, 2014), and The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude (2015, 2016). This partnership will add at least five Forsythe works to Boston Ballet’s repertoire.

William Forsythe is “widely recognized as one of the most important choreographers working today” (Roslyn Sulcas, The New York Times) whose work has been performed by virtually every major ballet company in the world. Forsythe danced with the Joffrey Ballet and Stuttgart Ballet, where he was appointed Resident Choreographer in 1976. He spent the next seven years of his career creating new work for Stuttgart and companies around the world. In 1984, he began a 20-year tenure as director of Ballet Frankfurt. He later served as the director of The Forsythe Company—a new, more independent ensemble based in Dresden and Frankfurt am Main—which he directed from 2005–2015. In 2015, Forsythe was appointed Associate Choreographer of the Paris Opera Ballet. Forsythe’s work continues to be commissioned by the world’s most prestigious companies. Additionally, Forsythe regularly gives lectures and workshops at universities and institutions around the world. He is an Honorary Fellow at the Laban Centre for Movement and Dance in London and holds an Honorary Doctorate from The Juilliard School. Currently, Forsythe is Professor of Dance and Artistic Advisor for the Choreographic Institute at the University of Southern California Glorya Kaufman School of Dance.

About Boston Ballet

Since 1963, Boston Ballet’s internationally acclaimed performances of classical, neo-classical, and contemporary ballets, combined with a dedication to world class dance education and community initiative programs, have made the institution a leader in its field, with a 52-year history of promoting excellence and access to dance.

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen and Executive Director Max Hodges, the Company maintains a diverse repertoire, ranging from full-length ballets to new works by some of today's finest choreographers. Boston Ballet's second company, Boston Ballet II, is comprised of dancers who gain experience by performing with the Company and independently, presenting special programs to audiences throughout the Northeast.

Programming for Boston Ballet’s 2015-2016 season includes Third Symphony of Gustav Mahler: A Ballet by John Neumeier, making Boston Ballet the first North American Company to perform the work; captivating classical works such as John Cranko’s Onegin and Mikko Nissinen’s Swan Lake; masterpieces by world-renowned choreographers such as George Balanchine and 20th century masters Leonid Yakobson and Léonide Massine; and two highly anticipated world premieres by Karole Armitage and Yury Yanowsky.

Boston Ballet School, the official school of Boston Ballet, has a long-standing dedication to providing exceptional dance education and ballet training to students across three studios in Boston, Newton, and the North Shore. Led by Director Margaret Tracey, the School reaches more than 5,000 students (toddler to adult) each year through its four core programs: Children’s Program, Classical Ballet Program, Adult Dance Program, and Pre-Professional Program.

Boston Ballet’s Department of Education and Community Initiatives (ECI) provides programming, events, and activities that connect the community to dance. ECI reaches more than 6,000 individuals in Boston, North Shore, and the surrounding communities each year through Citydance, ECI on Location, Adaptive Dance, and other community programs.

For more information, please visit www.bostonballet.org.

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Well, golly. This is a coup for Boston Ballet.

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