March 14, 2007
ABT ANNOUNCES CAST CHANGES
FOR ROMEO AND JULIET
AT THE CIVIC OPERA HOUSE,
MARCH 21-25, 2007
VIACHESLAV SAMODUROV, PRINCIPAL DANCER WITH THE ROYAL BALLET, TO PERFORM ROMEO ON MARCH 22 AND MARCH 24
HERMAN CORNEJO AND GILLIAN MURPHY TO DEBUT IN TITLE ROLES DURING CHICAGO ENGAGEMENT
Due to illness and injury, American Ballet Theatre (ABT) has announced cast changes and additions for its Chicago engagement of the romantic classic Romeo and Juliet, choreographed by
Sir Kenneth MacMillan, at the Civic Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive, in Chicago, March 21-25, 2007.
The casting for the roles of “Juliet,” “Romeo,” and “Mercutio” in Chicago is as follows: Julie Kent, Angel Corella, and Craig Salstein (Opening Night, Wednesday, March 21 at 7 p.m.); Paloma Herrera, Viacheslav Samodurov, and Jesus Pastor (Thursday, March 22 at 2 p.m.); Xiomara Reyes, Angel Corella, and Carlos Lopez (Thursday, March 22 at 7:30 p.m.); Gillian Murphy*, David Hallberg, and Craig Salstein (Friday, March 23 at 8 p.m.); Xiomara Reyes, Herman Cornejo*, and Carlos Lopez (Saturday, March 24 at 2 p.m.); Paloma Herrera, Viacheslav Samodurov, and Jesus Pastor (Saturday, March 24 at 8 p.m.); and Gillian Murphy, David Hallberg, and Craig Salstein (Sunday, March 25 at
2 p.m.). *Gillian Murphy will make her debut as “Juliet” on March 23 at 8 p.m. Herman Cornejo will make his debut as “Romeo” on March 24 at 2 p.m. All casting is subject to change.
Guest artist Viacheslav Samodurov of The Royal Ballet – Great Britain’s most prestigious ballet company – will join ABT in the role of “Romeo” for two performances only, Thursday, March 22 at 2 p.m., and Saturday, March 24 at 8 p.m. Born in Talinn, Russia, Viacheslav Samodurov trained at the Vaganova Ballet Academy and joined the Maryinsky Ballet in 1992, where he toured extensively and was promoted to principal in 1998. In 2000, he joined the Dutch National Ballet as a principal, where he expanded his repertory to include works by Sir Frederick Ashton, George Balanchine, William Forsythe, Hans Van Manen, Jerome Robbins and Rudi Van Dantzig. Samodurov joined The Royal Ballet in 2003 and has danced the pas de deux Voices of Spring, Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, the Prince in Cinderella and
The Nutcracker, Orion in Sylvia, Colas in La Fille mal gardée, Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake, Lescaut in Manon, and Albrecht in Giselle. The Chicago engagement of Romeo and Juliet will be Samodurov’s first appearance with American Ballet Theatre.
Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s masterful interpretation of William Shakespeare’s enduring romantic tragedy entered ABT’s repertoire in 1985 and has since become one of the Company’s signature productions. Against the sumptuous setting of Renaissance Italy, MacMillan weaves a dance tapestry rich in character nuance and sensuality, and Sergei Prokofiev’s stirring music underscores the lyric beauty and passion of this beloved ballet’s star-crossed lovers.
The principal roles in Romeo and Juliet are widely considered to be the ultimate test of dramatic ability, at once demanding both consummate artistry and technique, while giving leeway for individual interpretation. ABT’s dancers, who hail from around the world, each bring distinctive qualities to these roles, creating a unique audience experience for every performance.
Each performance of MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet will feature American Ballet Theatre’s 85+ member company, accompanied by a live 65-member orchestra performing the classic Prokofiev score. The production includes scenery and costumes by Nicholas Georgiadis and lighting by Thomas Skelton.
An Opening Night Gala, to benefit American Ballet Theatre, will take place Wednesday evening, March 21, featuring a pre-performance Gala reception at 5:30 p.m., prime seating for the 7:00 p.m. performance of Romeo and Juliet, and a post-performance champagne toast on stage with the dancers. ABT’s Opening Night in Chicago is co-chaired by Sonia Florian and William McIntosh. Information and tickets for the Chicago Opening Night Gala, priced from $400, are available by calling (212) 477-3030, extension 3245. For performance-only tickets, please call (312) 902-1500.
Tickets for performances of American Ballet Theatre’s Romeo and Juliet, which range in price from $23 to $103, can be purchased by calling (312) 902-1500; by visiting the Civic Opera House box office; or on-line at www.ticketmaster.com. Groups of 15 or more can receive discount pricing by calling
(312) 922-2110, ext. 357. A limited number of student rush tickets, priced at $20, will be available on the day of each performance at the Civic Opera box office and through Ticketmaster. Students must present a valid ID.
For more information on American Ballet Theatre’s presentation of Romeo and Juliet at the Civic Opera House, March 21-25, 2007, please call (312) 902-1500 or click here.