Wednesday, April 9, 2014

From Wunderland to New Works, Looking forward to Edwaard Liang's Next Piece

As an assignment for my Ballet II class at Ohio State, an intermediate class for non-dance majors who love to dance, we were required to go out and see BalletMet’s performance of Symphony in C. A group of us planned to attend the Sunday matinee performance together. As an intern at BalletMet, I had been excited about this production for months. I had quite a bit of insight as to what the show would consist of, as I had done a lot of research and produced some marketing materials for the show. In my excitement, on the way to the theatre, I asked my friends what they expected to see in the show. While all of us are dancers, none of the other girls really knew what to expect. I told them a little bit about what I knew of the show and we sat in the theatre anticipating the opening of the curtain.

The first piece in the production was by far my favorite and the favorite of each of the girls who attended with me. This piece was entitled Wunderland  and was Artistic Director, Edwaard Liang’s first showing of original choreography set on the BalletMet dancers. Especially to those who have the notion of Ballet as incredibly feminine and dainty, Wunderland  was unexpected and dynamic. Through his choreography, Edwaard showcased the inherent strength and athleticism dancers posses through intricate formations, innovative shapes, and impressive lifts. The choreography was filled with intensity and passion through the use of partnerships that tested gravity, showing both dependence and resistance. As the drama and beauty of the Wunderland came to a close, the audience around me rose to their feet for a standing ovation.

After seeing Wunderland I am really looking forward seeing to Edwaard’s next piece of choreography. The production is entitled New Directions, New Works and premieres April 25th at the Capitol Theatre. As this is a world premiere performance, BalletMet is keeping a lot of the details of the piece under wraps. The mysteriousness of the piece makes it even more anticipated and exciting! All I have been able to gather at this point, is that the new work will feature live music. Two pianists playing Rachmaninoff’s compositions are to accompany the dancers onstage, one of whom is Ty Boyle, BalletMet’s music director. Live music onstage is always a treat for audiences and really lends itself to the excitement and realness the dancing. I can’t wait to see how this piece will come together.

The production also features two other pieces to be performed by BalletMet dancers. The first is called Carousel and is choreographer, Christopher Wheeldon’s graceful and elegant interpretation of a 1945 broadway musical about new love. Lastly, the company will perform 18+1 a fun, Latin inspired piece choreographed by Gustavo Ramirez Sansano. 18+1 is a piece with a contemporary twist and is full of exciting, lively choreography. New Directions, New Works is set to be an exciting medley of three very different pieces of dance, and I am very excited to attend the performance!