Houston Ballet to Return to Joyce Theater, 10/22-27
The Joyce Theater Foundation is proud to welcome back onto its stage Houston Ballet, following a successful debut two years ago, from October 22 - 27. This engagement will feature a program designed to showcase the company's contemporary repertoire with works by Stanton Welch (the company's acclaimed artistic director), Mark Morris, Ben Stevenson and Hans van Manen. Tickets range in price from $10-$59 ($26 - $44 for Joyce Members) and are available through JoyceCharge at www.Joyce.org or by calling 212-242-0800. Please note: ticket price is subject to change. The Joyce Theater is located at 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street, in Chelsea.
Under the leadership of artistic director Stanton Welch since 2003, internationally acclaimedHouston Ballet takes The Joyce Theater stage with a sensational program of 21st century ballet that includes Welch's 2004 work Play, set to music by DJ/techno artist Moby; Mark Morris's 1995Pacific, set to the music of Lou Harrison's Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano; the hauntingly romantic 2002 pas de deux by Ben Stevenson, Twilight, set to Serge Rachmaninoff's Elegi, Op. 3, No. 1; andHans van Manen's 1997 Solo, which is comprised of three solos for men danced to a recording of Bach's Suite for Violin in D Minor. Pacific and Twilight will both be performed to live music.
Stanton Welch's imaginative and youthful work Play is city life made into ballet with classical technique. The dancers wear street clothes, but are on pointe; however, the pointe shoes look like sneakers. Mr. Welch's inspiration for this piece comes from the media-saturated, heavily politicized twenty-first century environment that urban dwellers experience. Everyday city life is dance: the dancers brush their teeth, rush to and from work, and play video games. Play is set to several selections from the Grammy-nominated 1999 album Play by DJ/techno artist Moby. The ballet's story is driven by the music: blues-inflected electronica, which provides the ideal musical backdrop for the ballet.
Pacific, by Mark Morris, is a light and joyous ensemble piece for nine dancers set to the music of Lou Harrison's Trio for Violin, Cello and Piano, first performed by Houston Ballet in March 2013. Created in 1995 for San Francisco Ballet, Pacific has entered the repertoire of Pacific Northwest Ballet, The Washington Ballet and Le Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genève, and impressed critics with its serene alliance of mood and movement. Live music will be performed by Houston Ballet Principal Pianist Katherine Burkwall-Ciscon; Michi Wiancko on violin; and Paul Wiancko on cello.
Solo is an athletic tour-de-force for three gifted male dancers by choreographer Hans van Manen, set to recorded music by Johann Sebastian Bach. Solo was first performed by Netherlands Dance Theater in The Hague on January 16, 1997. Believing that the complexity of Johann Sebastian Bach's Violin Suite makes it impossible for just one person to dance, van Manen divides this masterful solo among three men in a tour de force work that challenges the men's daring agility and grace. This explosive display of virtuosity and wit launches the men into an exhilarating whirlwind of movement and musicality in a short - but powerful - seven-minute ballet. With a classical score and a contemporary dance style, the dancers connect briefly, and each dance features sequential solos with virtuosity.
Ben Stevenson choreographed his pas de deux, Twilight (to Serge Rachmaninoff's Elegie) for Houston Ballet Principal Dancer Sara Webb and Ian Casady to perform at the International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi in June 2002. In November of that same year, the company danced the piece at the legendary Bolshoi Theater in Moscow. Mr. Stevenson explained, "I tried to capture the romance that I thought was expressed in the music. Although I have attempted a romantic feeling, it is one of the most difficult pas de deux I have choreographed, and the piece demands a very strong male dancer to keep the difficult choreography smooth and elegant." Rachmaninoff's Elegiewill be performed live by Houston Ballet Principal Pianist Katherine Burkwall-Ciscon.
Houston Ballet, returning to The Joyce Theater for a one-week engagement from October 22 - 27, will perform as follows: Tuesday - Wednesday at 7:30pm; Thursday - Friday at 8pm; Saturday at 2pm & 8pm; Sunday at 2pm. Dance Chat, a free post-performance talkback with members of Houston Ballet, will take place on Wednesday, October 23. This enlightening discussion is open to all patrons attending that evening's performance. Tickets range in price from $10-$59 ($26 - $44 for Joyce Members) and are available through JoyceCharge at www.Joyce.org or by calling 212-242-0800. Please note: Tickets prices are subject change. The Joyce Theater is located at 175 Eighth Avenue at 19th Street, in Chelsea.