|The Brahms-Haydn Variations
Choreography by Twyla Tharp | Music by Johannes Brahms
Exhilarating with high energy and bravura steps, this ABT commission features thirty dancers powerfully immersed in choreographic counterpoint that fills the stage with activity, refracted and multiplied as in a kaleidoscope. Performed to one of Brahms' personal favorites, Variations on a Theme by Haydn for Orchestra, Tharp's inventive work reaches a new peak of the choreographer's opus for large-cast classical ballets.
Monotones I and II
Choreography by Frederick Ashton | Music by Erik Satie
Pure poetry, these haunting yet elegant pas de trois achieve an eerie otherworldliness of understated intensity, as Ashton reaches the summit of adagio classicism. Demanding immense rigor, these deeply mysterious ballets focus on the sculptural molding of luscious, curving poses and slowly unfurling shapes in a serene landscape beyond time and place.
Serenade after Plato's Symposium
Choreography by Alexei Ratmansky | Music by Leonard Bernstein
After the recent World Premiere performance in May 2016, The New York Times claimed, "Alexei Ratmansky's Symposium is the most authoritatively original creation this bewilderingly versatile choreographer has given us and richly extends the nature of dance theater. Made to Bernstein's exceptional violin concerto, it's a marvel of musicality; you hear this American concerto far better for watching the dance. And yet this work's true heart lies in the colloquy among seven male dancers, revealing the intense individuality of each one discussing the nature of love, with beautifully subtle classicism."
Choreography by George Balanchine | Music by Sergei Prokofiev
Balanchine's powerful account of the Biblical parable has continued to be as startlingly impactful today as when it premiered in 1929 for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. This tale of sin and forgiveness follows a rebellious child who flees his father's hearth to find adventure and temptation, only to return home, heartbreaking in his penitence. The ballet's coveted roles offer a rare, dramatic opportunity to re-create this vibrant, breathing work of art.
Daphnis and Chloe - Company Premiere
Choreography by Benjamin Millepied | Music by Maurice Ravel
One of the seminal masterworks of French music, Ravel's shimmering score paints a musical fresco for the pastoral tale of the young shepherd Daphnis' love for the wood nymph, Chloe. In a wonderful suspension between abstraction and narrative, Benjamin Millepied's ability to create ever-shifting patterns is on dazzling display with a balletic language echoing the frieze-like figures of a Greek vase, captivatingly complemented by a production design of color-infused geometric forms in perpetual movement. This is a unity of music, dance and art at its harmonious best.
Jessica Lang World Premiere
Music by Fanny Mendelssohn
A self-proclaimed "visual artist whose medium is dance," choreographer Jessica Lang incorporates striking design elements and transforms classical ballet language to conceive a complete universe, both artfully crafted and emotionally engaging. For her ABT commission, Lang finds an intriguing inspiration for her "visual music" in a piano suite by Fanny Mendelssohn, the sister of composer Felix Mendelssohn, whose most famous work, Das Jahr (The Year), is a musical diary depicting the months of the year she spent in Rome with her family.
Choreography by Frederick Ashton | Music by César Franck
Acclaimed as one of Ashton's finest works, Symphonic Variations is a radiant classical showpiece for its six dancers, full of flowing lines and gleaming footwork. It is one of the great challenges of the ballet repertory, needing soft grace in demanding steps, as dancers coalesce in quartets, duets, sextets and solos but always with a sense of serenity, grandeur and spirituality, perfectly reflecting Franck's masterful score for piano and orchestra.