Petite Mort (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart/Jiri Kylian) is the very erotic ballet piece to be performed at PNB starting this Friday, Sept 24.
As the local treasure that is the Pacific Northwest Ballet slowly approaches its 40th season in 2012, audiences are again being promised a dynamite season with their new lineup which debuts this coming Friday, September 24. It’s a year that promises to be full of familiar favorites, and featuring contemporary, innovative works that are bound to speak volumes to our communities, in a particularly eloquent way that only the dance world can.
Sechs Tänze (Six Dances)* (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart/Jiri Kylian) will be performed at the Director’s Choice at Pacific Northwest Ballet Sept 24-Oct 3.
First up, (this coming Friday in fact), we are treated to the annual Director’s Choice, in-which PNB’s Artistic Director, Peter Boal, will treat local audiences with an always promising selection, this time around including two premier pieces. The bill includes Petite Mort’s return, the PNB premier of Jerome Robbins’ “Glass Pieces” set to the music of Philip Glass, and audience favourite Jardi Tancat, amongst others. “Director’s Choice” will run from September 24th to October 3rd and tickets are still available. You won’t want to miss it!
Twyla Tharp’s “Waterbaby Bagatelles.
November offers audiences a chance to fall in love all over again with the works of internationally respected choreographer Twyla Tharp. “All Tharp” featuring two pieces she specially commissioned for PNB before receiving the highly acclaimed Kennedy Center Honors in 2008, and a third created in 2006 titled “Waterbaby Bagatelles”. “All Tharp” performs from November 5th to the 14th.
Anthony Dowell and Wayne Sleep as the Ugly Sisters in the 2004 Covent Garden/Royal Ballet Cinderella. Photo by John Ross.
After a 9 year hiatus, the classicly, splendid ballet “Cinderella”, featuring music by Sergei Prokofiev, and choreography by Kent Stowell will open the new year from February 4th to the 13th, and promises to be a wonderful night of dance theater for the entire family…or a posse of pals and gals. This particular production was commissioned and choreographed for PNB by Mr. Stowell in 1994, taking inspiration from the Royal Ballet’s 1948 production. An added treat for gender-bending fans will feature a traditional spectacle of sorts, as the Ugly Stepsisters are to be portrayed by… shock! Men! See? Queer culture, even if not intended to be just that, or specifically portrayed by queer individuals, is EVERYWHERE!! Even at the ballet!
Chalnessa Eames & Josh Spell in Paul Gibson’s The Piano Dance.Photo © Angela Sterling
Next Spring, we will be treated with contemporary works in a piece titled “Contemporary 4″, which features music by Lou Harrison, Dmitri Shostakovich, and many more (not all music to be performed has been announced), and choreography by Mark Morris, Paul Gibson, Marco Goecke, in a World Premiere and other promising individuals. “Contemporary 4″ runs from March 18th to the 27th.
The final two features for PNB’s season are beautiful classics in the canon and paint lyrical pictures with their marvelous storytelling through sensationally polished dance. William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” has received many adaptations as musicals or films or operas, but the ballet with music by Felix Mendelssohn and choreography by the the brilliant George Balanchine is one of the most splendid and masterfully crafted versions out there. PNB’s mounting of this beauty will run from April 8th to the 17th, and serves as a splendid way to welcome the Spring.
Adolphe Adam’s splendid score to the classic story of “Giselle” has enchanted audiences for over 150 years, and will prove a must-see event with PNB’s season closer, to feature new, inventive staging by Peter Boal himself! This production of the world-famous tragedy will be the first venture on the part of an American ballet company in reviving a classic based on original material researched by Stepanov notation expert Doug Fullington, in collaboration with leading “Giselle” scholar Marian Smith. This will be a very important event for area ballet fans, and is sure to draw a lot of national attention in the ballet world. “Giselle” runs from June 3rd to the 12th.
Pacific Northwest Ballet Company dancers in Nutcracker. © Angela Sterling
Of course, PNB will also feature two special productions; the 27th annual production of “The Nutcracker” will play November 26th to December 27th, featuring the classic score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and nationally acclaimed choreography by PNB’s founding Artistic Director Kent Stowell. This production has been a staple for local art and dance lovers for years, alongside ACT’s production of “A Christmas Carol”, and for me — the Dina Martina Christmas special, and always evokes tears in it’s splendid story, and fascinating music.
Come March, you are also invited to see the Pacific Northwest Ballet School’s production of “Pinocchio”, a narrated one-act ballet conceived and choreographed by Bruce Wells, with music by Nicola Piovani and Amilcare Ponchielli. This delightful story will receive a run of only 3 performances, two on March 20th, and one on March 26th, so do get your tickets early!
This, my friends, is a season nearly overwhelming in its level of promising creative energy. The anticipation for “Director’s Choice” this week is raising in my system, and I highly look forward to reporting back to you on each adventure I take with the company this season. For ticketing information, detailed history and artistic notes on each production, a list of working artists on each show including the cast (some unannounced until closer to show-time) and production crew, visit the Ballet’s website at http://www.pnb.org, or to pick up a set of season tickets, call 206-441-2424. Dance on, my friends!