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Season Encore-June 11 @ 6:30pm Saluting the Career of Departing Dancer Lesley Rausch

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Season Encore Performance

Celebrating its 50th Anniversary, and saluting the career of departing dancer Lesley Rausch.

Featuring the world-famous PNB Orchestra.



Sunday, June 11, 2023 – 6:30 pm

Marion Oliver McCaw Hall

321 Mercer Street at Seattle Center

Seattle, WA 98109

SEATTLE, WA – Pacific Northwest Ballet Artistic Director Peter Boal has announced the line-up for the company’s 2022-23 Season Encore Performance, a crowd-pleasing reprise of audience favorites from PNB’s repertoire, and a bittersweet but celebratory salute to the career of retiring principal dancer Lesley Rausch. The program will feature PNB’s entire company, along with the world-famous PNB Orchestra under the baton of Music Director/Principal Conductor Emil de Cou. The program includes works by George Balanchine, Alejandro Cerrudo, Kiyon Ross, Penny Saunders, and Kent Stowell, among others.

PNB’s Season Encore Performance is a one-night-only affair, Sunday, June 11 at 6:30 pm at McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer Street at Seattle Center. Tickets are available exclusively through the PNB Box Office (online at PNB.org, by phone at 206.441.2424, or in person at 301 Mercer Street at Seattle Center.)

The line-up for the 2022-23 Season Encore Performance includes (follow select hyperlinks for complete program notes):


Wonderland (excerpt)

Music: Michael Wall, Jean-Philippe Goude, Hugues Le Bars, Erik Satie, Camille Saint-Saens, Stephen Foster

Choreography: Penny Saunders


Duo Concertant (excerpts)

Music: Igor Stravinsky

Choreography: George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust


Black on Black on Black (excerpt)

Music: Oliver Coates; Hidden Orchestra; Natalia Tsupryk; Parra for Cuva; Timber Timbre

Choreography: Alejandro Cerrudo


Giselle (Peasant pas de deux)

Music: Adolphe Adam, with additional music by Friedrich Burgmuller, Riccardo Drigo, and Ludwig Minkus

Choreography: Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot, and Marius Petipa, with additional choreography by Peter Boal


Slaughter on Tenth Avenue (excerpt)

Music: Richard Rodgers

Choreography: George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust


…Throes of Increasing Wonder (excerpt)

Music: Cristina Spinei

Choreography: Kiyon Ross


A Midsummer Night’s Dream (excerpt)

Music: Felix Mendelssohn

Choreography: George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust


Swan Lake (excerpt, Act II)

Music: Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Choreography: Kent Stowell



Pacific Northwest Ballet’s 2022-2023 50th Anniversary Season Encore Performance will be performed one night only, Sunday, June 11 at 6:30 pm at Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer Street at Seattle Center. Tickets range in price from $40 to $210 (PNB subscribers receive 20% off) and may be purchased exclusively through the PNB Box Office:


·         Phone - 206.441.2424*

·         In Person - 301 Mercer Street at Seattle Center

·         Online - PNB.org (24/7)

·         Subject to availability, tickets are also available 90 minutes prior to PNB show times at McCaw Hall.


Health & Safety: PNB will continue to follow the advice of our local health authorities in partnership with our labor groups to create our masking and vaccine policies. At this time, masks are strongly encouraged but not required as part of the PNB audience experience. For details and current information regarding PNB’s current health and safety policies, visit PNB.org/Health.

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16 hours ago, Helene said:

The news was posted in the Broadcasts forum, but it bears repeating here:  the stream is available for free online through June 15 at 11:59pm PDT:



What a treat to be able to take a second look. I especially enjoyed the film near the end with glimpses of her many roles - a reminder of the very rich and diverse rep of this company. Finishing with Act II of Swan Lake struck me at first as an odd choice, but that ballet is such a touchstone for so many of us, I liked it. It also brought in many company members, which was nice.

Edited by California
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Thanks Helene for the tip. I will definitely be watching it again now that I know.

(BTW, although no one is a bigger fan of Leslie than I, I thought the Encore program generally a bit strange. Somehow their choices didn't fully work for me. None the less, I was so glad to have been able to be "present" at this fabulous dancer's, this prima ballerina's, farewell. Had I been there, I would have been screaming my head off.)

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I was sorry that Odette's exit was so quick, and that the end of the scene was more about Siegfried and Rothbart. On this particular occasion it would have been nice to see Odette's transformation back into a swan as she slowly bourréed into the wings. Surely, it could have been done that way as a one-off. 

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I was sorry that Odette's exit was so quick....

I couldn't agree more. That's one of my favorite moments (every time Carla Korbes did it, tears came to my eyes), but that magic moment was just thrown away. At first I didn't believe it, so I backed up the video to see it again. Nope. Overall, I was not satisfied by the pieces chosen for Leslie (altho I assume she had a major part in those choices). The most exciting moments of the evening for me were in the video of her career.....so many great roles, done, oh so well. 

P.S. Frankly, I was hoping for "Red Angels" since it was in that role that I first fell in love with Leslie, but I didn't expect it since I believe only one person is allowed to play that music.

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On 6/13/2023 at 11:10 PM, volcanohunter said:

I was sorry that Odette's exit was so quick, and that the end of the scene was more about Siegfried and Rothbart. On this particular occasion it would have been nice to see Odette's transformation back into a swan as she slowly bourréed into the wings. Surely, it could have been done that way as a one-off. 

I finally watched the recording.  I had tickets to the show Sunday but wasn't able to attend.

It was interesting that Act II and a shortened Act IV were sequenced one after the other.  The normal Act IV is much longer and has the big drumroll "Hollywood" music before Odette bourrees off stage left.  There is also a very tender moment I enjoy before she leaves where Siegfried is kneeling and she gently puts his head down so he can't watch her leave.  The best Sigfrieds look up just as she has disappeared into the wings.  You'll have to buy the digital next season if you don't know what I'm talking about!

I enjoyed reviewing the season and seeing a wide variety of dancers perform.  It is so great to see Leta Biasucci back!  I thought it was an interesting choice to include the Giselle Peasant Pas but wow did Kuu Sakaragi impress me with his clean technique and tight feet placements!  In Worlds to Come he was featured in a lot of more virtuoso contemporary type jumps and turns but seeing him one week later in this piece tells me he has great foundation.  I also really enjoyed Lucien Postelwaite as Oberon!  I think he was made Principal in 2009 - it is amazing he can dance such a difficult solo at such a high calibre!

The video of Lesley was really special.  I loved seeing all that footage from different years - her great range across different styles of choreography, many partners, relationships, her training and trajectory of career.  

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Considering the precariousness of a career in ballet, it is noteworthy for a dancer to perform over time such a diverse series of roles as Lesley Rausch apparently did, based on the montage of past video clips inserted towards the end of the streamed farewell performance honoring her (as well as the comments by the members above). Similarly notable is for anyone in the audience to witness a dancer whose work they value achieve such a feat.

During New York City Ballet's recent run of Afternoon of a Faun, the epic nature of a particular moment in this work became evident to me. That is the instant the two dancers first notice each other in the "mirror." Imagine locking eyes with either dancer at that extraordinary moment. A dancer's eyes, in that split second, become metaphorically a giant canvas of the mind and soul, on which a person visualizes imprinted with a mark commensurate with its relative value and importance every work of art they have experienced.

How can an individual truly measure, one muses, the impact of all these works of art on the way we perceive ourselves and the world? For instance, how has its portrayal in countless novels, plays, poems, short stories, paintings, movies (or films), and ballets affected our understanding of the subject of "love"? How ironic and suggestive is it, moreover, that the two dancers view each other for the first time through the "mirror" of our eyes?

Obviously, it was gratifying and quite touching on such an occasion to observe that this was the precise moment from Afternoon of a Faun selected for inclusion among the video clips from Lesley Rausch's evidently lengthy and successful dancing career.

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