Ballet West’s 55th Season brims with energy, magic and drama
SALT LAKE CITY – February 8, 2018 – Ballet West promises a dramatic and breathtaking season for its 55th anniversary next year, bringing back Utah favorites and introducing new works to the Capitol Theatre stage.
The Season opens with Jewels, George Balanchine’s only plotless full-length ballet inspired by his relationship with jeweler Claude Arpels. Jewels is a ballet in three-acts with each act’s music revealing the essence of each stone. The mysterious Emeralds, set to the delicate music of Fauré, epitomizes French elegance, followed then by the high flying Rubies, which uses the jazzy strains of Stravinsky. The ballet’s elegant and grand finale, Diamonds, features music by Tchaikovsky and a large cast to portray the grandeur of imperial Russia. Artistic Director Adam Sklute said, “Each of the three sections is evocative of a mood, an era, and–even though the ballet is plotless—it tells a multilayered story.”
Last year, Ballet West unveiled new sets and costumes for Willam Christensen’s The Nutcracker, presented by the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation; it was a phenomenal success in both critical reviews and record-breaking ticket sales. The production, in its 63rd year, is the longest running in the United States, and possibly the world, and it remains a favorite Utah holiday tradition.
In February, Ballet West returns with Sklute’s critically acclaimed production of Swan Lake. Glorious and heart-melting music by Tchaikovsky and a timeless story make this one of the most beloved ballets in the Company’s repertoire. Ballet West’s Swan Lake broke attendance records when the Company produced it in 2014, and the Deseret News exclaimed, “the execution of artistry is some of the best in the ballet world.”
A major Utah premiere will highlight the spring, with the staging of John Cranko’s internationally renowned telling of Alexander Pushkin’s Onegin in April. “For many years I have dreamed of bringing Onegin to Utah,” said Sklute. “I consider this one of the great ballets of the 20th century. Cranko’s genius of storytelling, and his brilliant pas de deux work shine in his deft handling of Pushkin’s heartbreaking verse-novel Eugene Onegin. This piece of dance-theater will have you on the edge of your seat.” Onegin first premiered at the Stuttgart Ballet in 1965, and the choreography includes a wide range of styles.
“When I arrived in Salt Lake City 10 years ago I was honored to become part of a Company already known for a broad repertoire,” said Sklute. “My vision was to weave the great and storied history of Ballet West with a new, dynamic, and 21st century outlook.” Sklute’s dream of molding Ballet West into one of the world’s most versatile ballet companies is on full display in the range of productions he will bring to the stage in the upcoming Season.
The Ballet West World Choreographic Festival closes the Season in May, with performances by Ballet West and four esteemed international ballet companies. The Festival has gained national attention and continues to grow as Adam Sklute invites companies from outside the United States this year, who will bring with them an even more diverse and unique perspective on ballet.
In addition to the regular Season, Ballet West II dancers and students from the Ballet West Academy will bring back to the stage Beauty and the Beast, full of comedy, romance, and adventure. After the World Premiere two years ago, this production has traveled the United States receiving high praise. Beauty and the Beast is part of the Family Series, which has guided narration and a truncated presentation, perfect for the youngest balletomanes.
Single tickets do not go on sale until September, so patrons are encouraged to subscribe now or renew their season memberships early to get bests available. Three-show subscription packages begin at just $64. Contact Ballet West at 801-869-6900 or visit www.balletwest.org.