BWW Review: Douglas Martins PRIDE AND PREJUDICE by ARB is Stunning
The stunning World Premiere of Douglas Martin's Pride and Prejudice by the American Repertory Ballet (ARB) was performed at Princeton's McCarter Theater on Friday, April 21st and Saturday, April 22nd. Martin, the company's Artistic Director, has created a fabulous production that brings Jane Austen's beloved 1813 classic novel to the stage. The project was five years in the making and this artistic gem certainly has a great future in the world of dance.
From the opening number to the final scene, the beautifully adapted ballet is fascinating. Martin has succeeded in capturing the story of love and life among English gentility during the Georgian area. The show depicts all of the tale's romance, humor and drama. Lavish social gatherings take place at the estates of Longbourn, Netherfield, and Pemberly. State of the art projections bring the scenes to life.
Douglas Martin's choreography is delightfully inventive. The troupe, with over thirty members, performs Pride and Prejudice with the ARB's signature grace and style. The production is brimming with outstanding performances. They include Miss Elizabeth Bennet-Monica Giragosian; Miss Jane Bennet-Lily Saito; Miss Lydia Bennet-Nanako Yamamoto; Miss Catherine Bennet (Kitty)-Emily Parker; Miss Mary Bennet-Karen Leslie Moscato; Mr. Bennet- Michael Landez; Mrs. Bennet-Mary Barton; Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy-Mattia Pallozzi; Mr Charles Bingley-Aldeir Monteiro; Miss Caroline Bingley-Erikka Reenstierna Cates; Miss Georgiana Darcy-Elenora Ambler; Miss Charlotte Lucas -Shaye Firer; Sir William Lucas-Tim Munoz; Mr. William Collins-Austap Klymko; Mr. George Wickham-Jacopo Jannelli; Mr R. Denny-David Greenberg (Act 1); Colonel Fitzwilliam-David Greenberg (Act 2); Men of the Regiment-Flavio Altieri, Matanya Solomon; Lady Catherine de Bourgh- Kathleen Moore Tovar; Mr. Edward Gardiner -Douglas Jackson; Mrs. Elizabeth Gardiner-Pamela Levy; Mr. Philips-Ron Krukowski; Mrs. Philips-Paulina Espinoza Hernandez; Young Ladies of Meryton-Greta Battistin, Dana Cox, Giulia Settimo, Mizuki Sato, Sophia Thomas; Town's People of Meryton-Esther Krukowski, Jo-Ann Munoz, Rachel Samoil, Jacopo Griffo, Karl Picuira-de Pimodan, Ken Samoil.
The Princeton Symphony Orchestra provided excellent orchestral accompaniment conducted by John Devlin with direction by Rossen Milanov. The selections included pieces by Ignaz Pleyel, John Field, Franz Schubert and Felix Mendelssohn. The score is by Douglas Martin and the Score Librarians are Jonathan Benjamin and Taras Pavlovsky.
The Creative Team has done a wonderful job of bringing Pride and Prejudice to the stage. The Costume and Production Designer: A. Christina Gianinni; Scenic Design Artist: Omar Ramos; Lighting Designer: Christopher Chambers; Production Manager: Lauren Parrish; Prop Coordinator: Rachel Jacquin.
We can only hope that there will be future stagings of Douglas Martin's Pride and Prejudice. This elegant new ballet is truly distinctive. It should entertain audiences for years to come.
For more information on the ARB and to learn about future performances, visit their web site at http://www.arballet.org/.
Photo Credit: Leighton Chen