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Spring Fling, Online, April 19-May 3 for Pacific Northwest Ballet School

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Here is the press release:


SPRING FLING: Annual Celebration of Pacific Northwest Ballet School

Digital program – free to all – will feature archival performance of Jerome Robbins’ Fanfare.


April 19 – May 3, 2021


For release on April 19, 2021  Spring Fling, Pacific Northwest Ballet’s annual celebration of the PNB School, goes online for 2021, and everyone’s invited. This year’s event, in an all-digital format, features an archival recording of Jerome Robbins’ lighthearted one-act ballet, Fanfare, performed by PNB School students and accompanied by the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Stephen Radcliffe. Spring Fling also offers family-friendly activities, bonus videos from the PNB Orchestra, spring craft projects, a virtual art gallery, and more. The program is available for viewing online at PNB.org from April 19 through May 3, 2021. (PNB season subscribers will automatically receive a link to view Spring Fling.) This year’s Spring Fling is free for everyone, with donations greatly appreciated. As PNB looks to the future and begins planning to return all students safely to our studios in Seattle and Bellevue, we hope audiences will consider a donation to sustain our school. For more information, visit PNB.org

Music: Benjamin Britten (The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Op. 34, 1946)
Choreography: Jerome Robbins
Staging: Robert LaFosse

Text: Eric Crozier
Scenic and Costume Design: Irene Sharaff
Lighting Design: Ronald Bates, recreated by Randall G. Chiarelli

Rehearsal Director: Dana Hanson

Rehearsal Pianist: Elisabeth Ellis

Conductor: Stephen Radcliffe, Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestras
Premiere: June 2, 1953: New York City Ballet
Pacific Northwest Ballet Premiere: November 15, 1994

PNB School’s digital performance of Fanfare is an archival recording from June 16, 2018 at 2:00 pm, featuring Timothy McCuen Piggee as the Major Domo.

Jerome Robbins choreographed Fanfare in 1953 for New York City Ballet in honor of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. A work that blends ceremony and humor, Fanfare is set to Benjamin Britten’s The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra. Consisting of variations and a fugue on a theme by Henry Purcell, Britten’s score takes the listener on a tour through the various musical instruments or groups that make up the modern symphony orchestra before bringing them all together for a grand and glorious finale. Accordingly, and with delightful invention, Robbins has assigned his dancers the task of displaying those instruments and their relationships choreographically, all the while maintaining what he refers to as “the ‘royalty’ of it all.”

As critic Walter Terry observed when Fanfare premiered on Coronation Night in June 1953: “Not only has Robbins selected and reinvented movements and, particularly, rhythmic phrasings which appear to be visualized characteristics of the instruments portrayed and the themes allotted to them, but he has also found the special brands of fun associated with, say, the tuba, the double bass, or the bassoons. One sees speed and lightness in the dancing of the flutes, gliding in the celli, soaring in the clarinets, ripples and sweeps in the harp, and fine pomposity in the percussion.” [Notes by Jeanie Thomas, 1994; edited by Doug Fullington, 2017.]

Founded in 1974, Pacific Northwest Ballet School is recognized as one of the top ballet training institutions in the United States. The School offers a complete, professional curriculum to more than 1,000 students. PNB School’s renowned faculty inspires young dancers through music, movement, and classical ballet technique, while striving to educate all of its students in a healthy and positive environment, and to share with them the rewards of this extraordinary art form.

Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestras is one of the country's oldest and largest youth orchestra programs. SYSO is committed to harnessing the power of music to help young people advance artistically but also grow intellectually, socially, and emotionally. This year SYSO has gone virtual and concert videos can be viewed on their YouTube channel. Visit SYSO.org to learn more. 



Access to Spring Fling is free and available through PNB.org. (PNB season subscribers will automatically receive an email with a link to the program.) Spring Fling is viewable April 19 – May 3, 2021. Digital content can only be viewed during the allotted time period; No extensions or exceptions will be granted. For additional information, please visit PNB.org.


While Spring Fling is free, donations are greatly appreciated. Over a year has passed since the pandemic closed PNB School’s in-person classes, and this disruption has been felt deeply by our students and their families. Through this challenging time, PNB School has pivoted, offering hundreds of Zoom classes; teaching in-studio classes for upper-level students in “pods”; and serving as a steadying presence in a year of upheaval. As we look to the future and begin laying out a plan to return ALL students safely to our studios, we hope everyone will consider a donation to sustain our school until we can all be together again.

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