Richmond Ballet’s Studio 4 Brings Famed Choreographers Back To Richmond (Ticket Giveaway)
Photo credit: Richmond Ballet Dancers in Chasing Cello by William Soleau. Richmond Ballet 2013. All rights reserved. Photo by Sarah Ferguson.
The Richmond Ballet’s Studio series promises exciting new and experimental productions throughout the season, and tonight’s opening of Studio 4 is sure to keep the pace going strong. Famed New York choreographer William Soleau will return to Richmond to show “Chasing Cello,” a piece he designed specifically for the intimate Studio Series Stage.
“Chasing Cello” will feature live instrument performances, and specially designed movable walls. Soleau said these elements help reenforce the chamber-like setting that the Studio Series is known for. “I wanted to utilize the very intimate nature of it(the Studio Stage) and adapt the ballet to fit and work very well in it.”
Soleau started choreographing at the age of 27, but before then, he spent many years working under the likes of John Butler and Anthony Tudor, influential choreographers in their own right. Now in his 60′s, Soleau has used his impressive work history to define and develop a unique voice that comes from this exposure to greatness. “We’re an amalgamation of all we’ve learned and from all the teachers that have come before us,” said Soleau. “But now… having done 80 ballets, I’ve found I’m very comfortable in my style and what I do.”
While much of Soleau’s work is more theatric, stemming from his own background in theater, Chasing Cellos aims to show a relationship between the dancers and the live instruments with less of a cohesive narrative. The show is scored by 3 Bach sonatas, were usually there is a main instrument theme and a second instrument would do derivations of that theme. But in the sonatas Soleau used for Chasing Cellos, Bach changed it around and made the two instruments equal partners. Soleau wanted the dancers to essentially be a 3rd instrument. “The dancers are another instrument added to these other lying motif, and the show has now become a trio,” said Soleau. “Like Balanchine said, ‘hear the dancers, see the music,’ I really tried to have people see the music with this piece.”
Studio 4 will also feature a the completed work “Ershter Vals” by Ma Cong. Cong was part of the Richmond Ballet’s new works Festival in 2009 and 10. “Ershter Vals” uses music from World War II area Jewish ghettos, and aims to “portray the light people find in relationships and communities, even in the darkest times.” The production will feature folk dance woven with classical technique.
Both shows open Tonight, May 9th and run until the 19th. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased by calling the Richmond Ballet Box Office at 804-344-0906 ex.224
As far and as deep as Le Sacre du Printemps goes, the company’s visual elements were stellar.April 14, 2016
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