DANCES PATRELLE Opens Tonight 4/16 At Kaye Playhouse At Hunter College

Opening tonight - Thursday, April 16th at 7:300 pm is Dances Patrelle, 20th Repertory Season, through April 19, 2009 at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College (68th Street between Park & Lexington Avenues) NYC. The diverse and exciting program celebrates 20 years of creativity that includes 2 dramatic ballets by Francis Patrelle: a World Premiere as well as a past dance classic staged by Cynthia Gregory.

The world premiere will be "Murder At The Masque; the casebook of Edgar Allan Poe" choreography by Francis Patrelle to a commissioned score by Patrick Soluri, and a story by Justin Allen. It has set design by Gillian Bradshaw-Smiths, costumes by Rita B. Watson, and lighting by David Grill. This is also the 200th Anniversary of the birth of one of America's most treasured literary masters, Edgar Allan Poe. Featuring characters and settings drawn from Poe's stories and poems. Lord Roderick Usher (danced by Royal Ballet alum Matthew Dibble) has been murdered; everyone at the Masquerade Ball is a suspect, and world famous detective Auguste Dupin (danced by "Movin' Out" alum Alex Brady) is on the case.

The company is reviving "Come Rain/Come Shine" (to songs sung by Judy Garland) with American Ballet Theatre stars Marcelo Gomes, Maria Riccetto, Kristi Boone, Isaac Stappas, Gemma Bond & Roman Zhurbin. The original roles were danced by Merrill Ashley, John Meehan, Judith Fugate, Medhi Bahiri, Miriam Mahdaviani & Carlo Merlo. The first revival starred Cynthia Gregory & Donald Williams. This is Judy Garland's 40th Anniversary of her death. Staging is by Cynthia Gregory with the set by Mark Di Quinzio, costumes by Rita B. Watson, lighting by David Gill and the song collage by Jerry Rice (artists subject to change)

Artistic Director, Francis Patrelle has created ballets for numerous distinguished dancers such as: Lynn Aaron, Merrill Ashley, Frank Augustyn, Peter Boal, Judith Fugate, Marcelo Gomez, Karen Kain, Lourdes Lopez, Douglas Martin, John Meehan, Daniel Mejia, Kevin O'Day, Johnathan Riseling, Jenifer Ringer, Jock Soto, Miranda Weese, Tim Wengerd, Donald Williams, and Prima Ballerina Cynthia Gregory to only name a few. He studied ballet in Philadelphia before receiving his BFA from Juilliard, where he studied with Alfredo Corvino, Jose Limon, and Antony Tudor. In 1980, he began choreographing for opera companies (Vienna State and Santa Fe). This led to Willie Stark, directed by Harold Prince for the Houston Grand Opera, which was televised on PBS's Great Performers Series as well as performed at the Kennedy Center. He also has many theater credits. Mr. Patrelle has worked with a wide range of companies throughout the world.

Dances Patrelle, reinventing dramatic dance, was founded in 1988. One of the goals is to bring dramatic dance to all audiences, through a collaborative process which blends music, drama, and history. dP's goals are to expand the awareness and appreciation for dramatic ballet; to preserve the works of Francis Patrelle and to provide an opportunity for further choreographic expression as well as present other choreographers' dramatic ballets and a forum for those works. Also dP provides a forum by which experienced dancers can share in a mentoring relationship with young dancers, and contribute to their evolution as performers and artists and also to provide maturing dancers the opportunity to expand their art through new choreographic works.

Dances Patrelle 20th Anniversary performances are this Tonight Thursday at 7:30pm; Friday & Saturday at 8pm; and Sunday at 3pm. Tickets are only $20 for all performances with a few special Patron tickets at $100. There is a special Opening Night Patron tickets for $200 which includes a reception following the performance for this evening. For reservations call dP (212) 722-7933. Tickets can be purchased at The Kaye Playhouse box office at (212) 772-4448. The Spring 2009 season is made possible by The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation Inc. and The Harkness Foundation For Dance.

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