BWW Reviews: Milwaukee Ballet's ROMEO AND JULIET Displays Pink's Dazzling Choreography
Fight scenes originally choreographed by Lee E. Ernst and then refined by Jamie Cheatham marvelously add to the story without overdoing the violence inherent in Shakespeare's play about two warring families unable to resolve their longstanding fued. Alexandre Ferreira's Mercutio and Ryan Martin's Tybalt compete valiantly, together with help of his true friend, Marc Petrocci's Benvolio, although a chance to offer forgiveness and healing is beyond hope until too many young lives are lost.
The Milwaukee Symphony's live ballet orchestra conducted by Andrews Sill places the Romeo and Juliet production into the stratrosphere of dance production. How fortunate for the city to have Sergei Prokofiev's profound musical score played live, which compels an audience to listen while the ballet focuses the audience's every minute of attention on the stage.
Pink finally fuses the classical choreography, technically complex and visually compelling, with contemporary dance to retell these neverending stories that resonate in the 21st century. A career milestone that Milwaukee can only anticipate will move further towards the exceptional with the world premiere of Mirror, Mirror in Spring 2014.
How does the company and Pink follow up such a stunning performance? Over the time of Pink's tenure with the ballet company he has consistently raised the standard of storytelling, classical ballet and choreography by contributing new works to Ballet's repertoire. His productions consistently revised and reworked until Pink can master the story of the clasical dance to his satisfaction, which then elevates his vision, Milwaukee's committment to the arts, and the legacy of the Ballet, indeed the city's world class ballet.
A theatrical renaissance may be underway in Milwaukee, still surfacing throughout numerous performing arts groups thriving in the city. Pink's command of the ballet highlights only one example. To enjoy such a superb dance production one would be hard pressed to uncover another in any theater or performing arts center in the country. Every seat in Uhlein Hall could be filled to support ballet, dance and the arts. Perhaps the Arts, especially when experiencing this beyond magical, magnificent Romeo and Juliet, powerfully remind the audience forgiveness sand redemption will be humanity's only hope.
The Milwaukee Ballet presents Romeo and Juliet one weekend only in Uhlein Hall at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts through November 3. A full season remains through 2014, with the delicious production of The Nutcracker December 14-27 and the World Premiere of Michael Pink's Mirror, Mirror, in May 2014. For further information or tickets, contact 414.902.2103 or visit milwaukeeballet.org.