American Ballet Theatre Will Return to the Auditorium Theatre in March

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American Ballet Theatre Will Return to the Auditorium Theatre in March

American Ballet Theatre (ABT) returns to the Auditorium Theatre with Celebrating 80 Years! from March 19-22, 2020, the second engagement in the Company's four-year residency at the National Historic Landmark. The Company celebrates its 80th anniversary with a mixed repertory program featuring works from throughout its history, showcasing the best in classic and contemporary ballet.

Principal dancers Isabella Boylston, Misty Copeland, Herman Cornejo, Sarah Lane, Hee Seo, Christine Shevchenko, Cory Stearns, Devon Teuscher, and James Whiteside are all scheduled to perform. Stella Abrera makes her final Chicago appearances with the Company before her retirement during this engagement.

ABT's program at the Auditorium features Antony Tudor's Jardin aux Lilas, performed by the Company in its first-ever season in 1940; Natalia Makarova's staging of the classic "Kingdom of the Shades" scene from Marius Petipa's La Bayadère, premiered by the company during its 40th anniversary season in 1980; and Twyla Tharp's electrifying Deuce Coupe, which will have its Chicago company premiere in March.

"American Ballet Theatre first performed at the Auditorium Theatre more than 50 years ago, when the theatre had not yet celebrated 100 years and ABT was not yet in its 30th season," says Rich Regan, Auditorium Theatre CEO. "We are thrilled to have this legendary company perform on our legendary stage as both the Auditorium and ABT reach significant milestones, with the Auditorium celebrating its 130th anniversary and ABT turning 80."

The breathtaking "Kingdom of the Shades" scene from Marius Petipa's La Bayadère, restaged by Makarova, opens the program. After the warrior Solor loses his love Nikiya to a deadly snake bite, he hallucinates their reunion in the Kingdom of the Shades, an elaborate scene that features 24 ballerinas dancing in perfect unison. The scene is considered "one of the most famous and poetic expressions in all of classical ballet ... in which a seemingly endless stream of dancers in ghostly white tutus forms a hypnotic spectacle of precision and heavenly harmony" (The Washington Post).

Jardin aux Lilas, by ABT founding choreographer Antony Tudor, follows the story of Caroline, a woman attending a party thrown in honor of her wedding. At the party, both Caroline and her future husband - who are marrying for convenience - bid farewell to their former lovers. Tudor's choreography, called "a masterwork of contemporary ballet" (The New York Times) explores human relationships with great subtlety, using quick gestures and movements to convey grand emotions.

Twyla Tharp's Deuce Coupe, set to music by The Beach Boys, juxtaposes ballet movement with contemporary dance, creating a singular theatrical piece of dynamic spontaneity that contrasts classical ballet vocabulary with the playful sounds of the 1960s and 70s. The work was originally created for The Joffrey Ballet and premiered at the Auditorium Theatre in 1973. ABT added the work to its repertory in 2019, resurrecting it for "the current generation, who danced it with daring and aplomb, making it a hit all over again" (The New York Times).

Casting

Thursday, March 19 @ 7:30PM

La Bayadère, Act II (Kingdom of the Shades) - Devon Teuscher, Cory Stearns

Jardin aux Lilas - Hee Seo, Thomas Forster, Christine Shevchenko, Roman Zhurbin

Deuce Coupe - Christine Shevchenko, Isabella Boylston, Misty Copeland, Stella Abrera, James Whiteside, Calvin Royal III

Friday, March 20 @ 7:30PM

La Bayadère, Act II (Kingdom of the Shades) - Hee Seo, Aran Bell

Jardin aux Lilas - Devon Teuscher, Cory Stearns, Katherine Williams, Alexandre Hammoudi

Deuce Coupe - Christine Shevchenko, Isabella Boylston, Misty Copeland, Stella Abrera, James Whiteside, Calvin Royal III

Saturday, March 21 @ 2PM

La Bayadère, Act II (Kingdom of the Shades) - Isabella Boylston, Herman Cornejo

Jardin aux Lilas - Hee Seo, Thomas Forster, Christine Shevchenko, Roman Zhurbin

Deuce Coupe - Katherine Williams, Cassandra Trenary, Luciana Paris, Stella Abrera, Blaine Hoven, Thomas Forster

Saturday, March 21 @ 7:30PM

La Bayadère, Act II (Kingdom of the Shades) - Sarah Lane, Joo Won Ahn

Jardin aux Lilas - Devon Teuscher, Cory Stearns, Katherine Williams, Alexandre Hammoudi

Deuce Coupe - Christine Shevchenko, Isabella Boylston, Misty Copeland, Stella Abrera, James Whiteside, Calvin Royal III

Sunday, March 22 @ 2PM

La Bayadère, Act II (Kingdom of the Shades) - Devon Teuscher, Cory Stearns

Jardin aux Lilas - Hee Seo, Thomas Forster, Christine Shevchenko, Roman Zhurbin

Deuce Coupe - Katherine Williams, Cassandra Trenary, Luciana Paris, Stella Abrera, Blaine Hoven, Thomas Forster

ABOUT THE PRINCIPAL DANCERS

Stella Abrera, from South Pasadena, CA, joined ABT as a member of the corps de ballet in 1996 and was appointed a Soloist in 2001. She was appointed a Principal Dancer in August 2015. Her repertoire with the company includes Giselle and Myrta in Giselle, Clara in The Nutcracker, and Juliet in Romeo and Juliet.

Isabella Boylston, from Sun Valley, ID, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2006 and the corps de ballet in 2007. She was promoted to Soloist in 2011 and to Principal Dancer in 2014. Her repertoire with the Company includes Kitri in Don Quixote, Lise in La Fille mal gardée, and Odette/Odile in Swan Lake.

Misty Copeland, from Kansas City, MO, joined ABT as a member of the corps de ballet in 2001. She was appointed a Soloist in 2007 and appointed a Principal Dancer in 2015. Her repertoire with the Company includes Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, Giselle in Giselle, and Kitri in Don Quixote.

Herman Cornejo, from Mercedes, San Luis, Argentina, joined ABT in 1999 and was promoted to Soloist in 2000. He was appointed a Principal Dancer in 2003. His repertoire with the company includes Basilio in Don Quixote, Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, and Albrecht in Giselle.

Sarah Lane, from San Francisco, CA, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2003 and became a member of the corps de ballet in 2004. She was promoted to Soloist in 2007 and appointed a Principal Dancer in 2017. Her repertoire with the Company includes Kitri in Don Quixote, Columbine in Harlequinade, the title role in Manon, and Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty.

Hee Seo, from Seoul, South Korea, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2005 and the corps de ballet in 2006. She was appointed a Soloist in 2010 and a Principal Dancer in 2012. Her repertoire with the Company includes Kitri in Don Quixote, Giselle in Giselle, Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, and Nikiya in La Bayadère.

Christine Shevchenko, from Odessa, Ukraine, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2007 and became a member of the corps de ballet in 2008. She became a Soloist in 2014 and a Principal dancer in 2017. Her repertoire with the company includes Myrta in Giselle, Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, and Medora in Le Corsaire.

Cory Stearns, from Long Island, NY, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2005 and became a member of the corps de ballet in 2006. He was appointed a Soloist in 2009 and a Principal Dancer in 2011. His repertoire with the Company includes Edward Rochester in Jane Eyre, Albrecht in Giselle, Onegin in Onegin, and Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake.

Devon Teuscher, from South Burlington, VT, joined ABT as an apprentice in 2007 and became a member of the corps de ballet in 2008. She was appointed a Soloist in 2014 and a Principal Dancer in 2017. Her repertoire with the company includes Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, Jane in Jane Eyre, and Odette/Odile in Swan Lake.

James Whiteside, from Fairfield, CT, joined ABT as a Soloist in 2012 and was named Principal Dancer in 2013. His repertoire with the Company includes Harlequin in Harlequinade, Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Albrecht in Giselle, and Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake.

PERFORMANCE INFORMATION

American Ballet Theatre - Celebrating 80 Years!

Thursday, March 19 | 7:30PM
Friday, March 20 | 7:30PM
Saturday, March 21 | 2PM
Saturday, March 21 | 7:30PM
Sunday, March 22 | 2PM

Tickets start at $50 and are available online here, by phone at 312.341.2300, or in person at the Auditorium Theatre Box Office (50 E Ida B Wells Dr). American Ballet Theatre is part of the Auditorium Theatre's International Dance Series subscription, which offers a 25% discount and also includes Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and the Bolshoi Ballet. Discounted tickets for groups of 10 or more people are also available.

The Auditorium Theatre also offers $20 student rush tickets to full-time college students and $5 tickets to young people ages 13-19 with Urban Gateways' Teen Arts Pass program. The Auditorium Theatre's ADMIT ONE program offers complimentary tickets to Chicago-area community groups.

Photo Credit: Rosalie O'Connor



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