American Repertory Ballet Presents AN EVENING OF PREMIERES Tonight, 10/6

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American Repertory Ballet will be performing a program of company premieres – An Evening of Premieres – tonight, October 6, 2012 at 8:00pm. The program will feature a new work by Resident Choreographer Mary Barton, Ann Marie DeAngelo's Blackberry Winter, and a major revival of Gerald Arpino's Viva Vivaldi.

Applauded for its gutsy revival of Gerald Arpino's Confetti during the 2011-2012 Season, ARB's premiere of Viva Vivaldi promises to be performed with equal gusto. Viva Vivaldi is a quick-footed ballet full of bravura and unique charm set to Antonio Vivaldi's Concerto in D for Violin, Strings and Cembalo.

ARB Resident Choreographer Mary Barton takes from her years as a Joffrey Ballet dancer a reverence for classical line along with more contemporary aesthetics, creating original neoclassical works through the lens of her vibrant choreographic imagination. Her new work for An Evening of Premieres promises to incorporate her uniquely narrative choreographic voice and acute sense of musicality.

Fellow Joffrey Ballet alum Ann Marie De Angelo's work Blackberry Winter was originally created in 1999 for a choreography workshop for Ballet Pacifica, now The National Choreography Initiative. The music for Blackberry Winter, composed by Conni Ellisor, is the only classical concerto written for the mountain dulcimer. It mixes folk melodies with a classical chamber orchestrA. Ellisor had classical training at Julliard, and over 15 years in the commercial music business. Her work has graced virtually all genres of contemporary American music.

The colloquialism "blackberry winter" describes a late spring frost necessary for a rich blackberry harvest. "A blackberry winter is unexpected yet fruitful" De Angelo explains. "So, as a metaphor for change, it tells us that with a little faith, we can expect a richer harvest."

"Cultivating a body of work that equally prioritizes female and male voices is paramount to ARB and vital to the field," says ARB Managing Director Christine Chen. "It has been a pleasure for us to be able to support and display the work of strong female choreographers such as Ann Marie DeAngelo, with whom we worked with last year on the Career Transition for Dancers' Gala, in addition to our own Resident Choreographer Mary Barton.

"By presenting major revivals of Gerald Arpino's often under-appreciated but wonderfully exhilarating work," she continues, "ARB demonstrates its unique voice in the world of dance, and in many ways, takes up the torch of Robert Joffrey and Arpino's vision - preserving their legacy here on the east coast after the Joffrey Ballet relocated to Chicago.

"Under Artistic Director Douglas Martin, American Repertory Ballet has been building a strong body of classically-based, fresh, American choreography through the kind of commissions and revivals which will be on full display at An Evening of Premieres."

Before the show, audience members can enjoy diverse fine dining experiences in nearby Somerville, NJ. Those who dine at Tapastre and Verve restaurants through October 5 can enjoy discounts to the performance.

American Repertory Ballet's mission is to bring the joy, beauty, artistry and discipline of classical and contemporary dance to New Jersey and nationwide audiences and to dance students through artistic and educational programs. The organization is comprised of: American Repertory Ballet, the preeminent contemporary ballet company in the state; Princeton Ballet School, one of the largest and most respected non-profit dance schools in the nation; and the Access and Enrichment initiatives, ranging from the long-running and acclaimed DANCE POWER program to the newly launched On Pointe series. The professional company is a classical and contemporary ballet company committed to presenting ballets from the 19th and 20th century alongside new and existing works by choreographers from today. Founded in 1963, the company is currently under the artistic leadership of Douglas Martin, former principal dancer with the Joffrey Ballet. The company's rich history of repertory includes established masterpieces by distinguished American choreographers such as George Balanchine, Gerald Arpino, Alvin Ailey, Paul Taylor and Twyla Tharp; cutting edge works by choreographers such as Val Caniparoli, Kirk Peterson, Dominique Dumais, Harrison McEldowney, Amy Seiwert, Susan Shields and Melissa Barak; and former Artistic Directors Dermot Burke, Marjorie Mussman, Septime Webre and Graham Lustig.

ARB has been designated a "Major Arts Institution" by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts consistently for the past two decades, and has repeatedly been awarded a Citation of Excellence by the Council. ARB was voted People's Choice for Best Dance Company in 2008 and 2011.

Photo Credit: George Jones