Program 2 features the Company Premieres of Sir Frederick Ashton’s Rhapsody and Jerome Robbins’ The Concert alongside the revival of Christopher Wheeldon’s There Where She Loved. Opening 16 November 2018 at the Sarasota Opera House, these performances will be accompanied by orchestra and operatic singers. Rhapsody would become Ashton’s final major work, a ballet created in honor of Ashton’s close friend HM the Queen Mother’s 80th Birthday, and choreographed on Mikhail Baryshnikov, who had requested to perform in a new Ashton ballet as a part of his guesting contract with The Royal Ballet. Set to Sergey Rachmaninoff’s renowned Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, the ballet combines Ashton’s penchant for musicality, smooth lines and exquisite details in the upper body, as well as fast and meticulous footwork, with the spectacular bravura that encapsulates Baryshnikov’s artistry. Dance writer and critic Zoë Anderson described the role created on Baryshnikov “as a dazzling visitor, shooting through the ballet like a comet” contrasting the female principal role as “rich in both Ashtonian details and echoes of the classics of the Royal Ballet repertory.” Christopher Wheeldon, one of the most sought after choreographers of today, offers an intricate and poignant exploration of love with his ballet There Where She Loved. Described by dance critic Sarah Kaufman for The Washington Post as “a searing union of action, vocals and expression,” the ballet is set to songs by Frédéric Chopin and Kurt Weill. Its subtle structure and shifting tone appear in the artful repetition of specific phrases to starkly contrasting music and contexts, as his dancers meet and separate, expressing fleeting moments of joy, ebullient self-confidence, or despairing loss. Jerome Robbins’ comedic masterpiece The Concert is in part a light-hearted satire on dance as well as a comedy on human nature, with Chopin’s music enhancing Robbins’ insights into humanity and the characters on stage. This truly one-of-a-kind enchanting ballet portrays a cast of quirky and eccentric characters at a piano recital and their laugh-out-loud antics, and also demonstrates Robbins’ signature balance of physical humor and technical virtuosity. These performances of Robbins’ The Concert celebrate the centennial of Jerome Robbins’ birth, and the performances of Ashton’s Rhapsody commemorate the 30th anniversary of Sir Frederick Ashton’s passing.
Birmingham Royal Ballet Principal Mathias Dingman will be performing the lead role in Ashton's Rhapsody for the Friday and Saturday Evening performances.
The Sarasota Orchestra will accompany this performance, conducted by Royal Ballet Principal Guest Conductor Barry Wordsworth.
Choreography by Sir Frederick Ashton
Music by Sergei Rachmaninoff
THERE WHERE SHE LOVED
Choreography by Christopher Wheeldon
Music by Frédéric Chopin and Kurt Weill
Choreography by Jerome Robbins
Music by Frédéric Chopin
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