David H. Koch Theater, 20 Lincoln Center Plaza (Columbus Ave. at 63rd St.)
Description: After The Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet is perhaps the most choreographed ballet of the last 60 years. Most versions are set to Sergei Prokofiev's lush 1935 score, although some choreographers have used music by Tschaikovsky, Berlioz, and Delius. In May 2007, Romeo + Juliet, a sumptuous new production of Shakespeare's romantic tragedy choreographed by Peter Martins, entered the repertory of New York City Ballet. While Mr. Martin's work utilizes Prokofiev's score, the choreographer, following City Ballet tradition, has streamlined the action into two acts with one intermission (instead of the usual three acts). And also in NYCB tradition, his ballet focuses on speed and virtuosity and showcases young company dancers in the lead roles. Says Mr. Martins, "The production is to honor the 100th birthday of NYCB co-founder Lincoln Kirstein so we are also using teachers and student from the School of American Ballet, which Lincoln helped found, as well."
The costumes and scenery are designed by acclaimed Danish artist, Per Kirkeby, who also collaborated with Peter Martins on the choreographer's 1996 NYCB production of Swan Lake. Kirkeby's use of jewel tones and stained glass scenic effects pay homage to artist Georges Rouault and his work for George Balanchine in the 1929 Constructivist-inspired Ballets Russes production of Prodigal Son. So, too, does the movable unit set that allows scenes to change before one's eyes, the action moving seamlessly from a bustling town square to Juliet's bedroom, from a ball room to a moonlit balcony. But above all, this is a production filled with dance, drama, and movement: passionate pas de deux, group dances by turns stately and exuberant, and realistic sword fights that will take your breath away.
Venue Description: Founded in 1948 by choreographer George Balanchine, New York City Ballet (NYCB) has the largest repertoire of any American ballet company and is currently the largest dance organization in America. The company stages more than 60 ballets in its winter and spring seasons at Lincoln Center each year and more than 20 in its summer season in Saratoga Springs. Balanchine's creativity influenced dance both across the United States and in Europe and The School of American Ballet (SAB), which Balanchine founded, is the official training school of New York City Ballet, where young American dancers are trained and schooled under the guidance of the world's greatest ballet masters. New York City Ballet has made numerous appearances in the world?s most influential capitals, with an active repertory of over 150 works, principally choreographed by Balanchine, Jerome Robbins and Peter Martins. NYCB's performances include "The Nutcracker," "Romeo and Juliet," and "A Midsummer Night's Dream," among others. The New York City Ballet also has a permanent orchestra and holds annual classical music festivals like the Stravinsky Festival, the Tchaikovsky Festival, and the American Music Festival.
The New York City Ballet's permanent performance space is located at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater on 63rd Street in Manhattan, and the other at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs, NY. The School of American Ballet is located in the Samuel B. & David Rose Building at Lincoln Center. For more information: nycballet.com.
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