Classics Old and New
Piano Concerto No. 1 is part of a trilogy of works, choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky and set to the music of Dimitri Shostakovich with scenery by George Tsypin, costumes by Keso Dekker and lighting by Jennifer Tipton. A mercurial romp that veers from energetic to languid, precise to chaotic, Piano Concerto No. 1 was given its World Premiere by American Ballet Theatre on May 31, 2013, under the title Piano Concerto #1, danced by Diana Vishneva, Cory Stearns, Natalia Osipova and Ivan Vasiliev.
Petite Mort was originally created by Jiří Kylián for the Salzburg Festival on the second centenary of Mozart’s death, incorporating the slow movements of two of Mozart’s most beautiful and popular piano concertos. With costumes by Joke Visser and lighting by Joop Caboort, Petite Mort features six men, six women and six foils and expresses themes of aggression, desire, energy, silence, anarchy and vulnerability. Petite Mort was given its World Premiere at the Salzburg Festival on August 23, 1991, at the Kleines Festpielhaus, Salzburg, Austria. It was given its American Ballet Theatre Company Premiere at City Center, New York on October 30, 2003. Petite Mort will be staged for ABT by Elke Scheppers.
Last performed by ABT in 2008, Harald Lander’s Études is an exhilarating tribute to the art form of classical ballet. Set to music by Carl Czerny and arranged by Knudaage Riisager, Études ingeniously illustrates the development of a dancer’s technique and artistry, from the regime of exercises at the barre to the dazzling heights of balletic proficiency. Created in 1948 at the Royal Opera House in Copenhagen for the Royal Danish Ballet, Études was later staged for the Paris Opera in 1952 and has been performed at the opening performances in Moscow, London and Brussels. American Ballet Theatre first presented Études at the 54th Street Theatre on October 5, 1961, with the cast headed by Toni Lander, Royes Fernandez, and Bruce Marks. Études will be staged for ABT by Thomas Lund.
20th Century Works: Balanchine and Ashton
Ballet Imperial, set to Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky’s Concerto No. 2 in G for Piano and Orchestra, evokes the era of Russia’s Imperial Ballet with its grandeur. The ballet received its World Premiere by American Ballet Caravan at the Hunter College Playhouse, New York on May 27, 1941, danced by Marie-Jeanne, Gisella Caccialanza and William Dollar. The American Ballet Theatre Company Premiere of Ballet Imperial was given on February 10, 1988, at the Auditorium Theatre, Chicago, danced by Susan Jaffe, Ross Stretton and Amanda McKerrow. Ballet Imperial will be staged for ABT by Colleen Neary with scenery and costumes by Rouben Ter-Arutunian and lighting by Jennifer Tipton.
Returning for ABT’s 2023 Fall season, The Dream is Frederick Ashton’s beguiling retelling of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and its comedy of errors set in the magical woods of Victorian England. This happy ode to the illusory nature of love is set to a spellbinding score by Felix Mendelssohn and arranged by John Lanchbery, sets and costumes by David Walker and lighting by John B. Read. The Dream received its World Premiere by The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London on April 2, 1964, danced by Antoinette Sibley as Titania, Anthony Dowell as Oberon and Keith Martin as Puck. The Dream was given its American Ballet Theatre Company Premiere at the Metropolitan Opera House, New York on May 24, 2002, danced by Alessandra Ferri as Titania, Ethan Stiefel as Oberon and Herman Cornejo as Puck.
21st Century Works: King and Ratmansky
Single Eye is a subtle entreaty for peace and natural harmony during trying times. This visually stunning ballet is set to music by celebrated jazz artist and composer Jason Moran, with choreography by Alonzo King, sets and costumes by Robert Rosenwasser and lighting by Jim French. Single Eye was given its World Premiere by American Ballet Theatre on March 16, 2022, at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, danced by Isabella Boylston, Thomas Forster, Calvin Royal III, Skylar Brandt and Cory Stearns.
Ratmansky’s production of Sergei Prokofiev’s On the Dnipro brings audiences to the banks of the mighty Ukrainian river, the Dnipro, and into the life of young soldier Sergei as he arrives home from the battlefields of war. Ratmansky's On the Dnipro received its World Premiere on June 1, 2009, at the Metropolitan Opera House, under the title On the Dnieper, danced by Veronika Part as Natalia, Marcelo Gomes as Sergei, Paloma Herrera as Olga and David Halberg as Olga’s Fiancé. The production features scenery by Simon Pastukh, costumes by Galina Solovyeva, lighting by Brad Fields and projections by Wendall K. Harrington. Prokofiev’s score for On the Dnipro was originally commissioned by the Paris Opera, and the original ballet production received its World Premiere in 1932 by the Paris Opera Ballet.
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