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ABT News

June 11, 2004


Special 90th Birthday Celebration for Frederic Franklin on June 21

Casting for the seventh and eighth weeks of American Ballet Theatre’s 2004 Spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House was announced today by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie.

Eight performances of Coppélia, staged by Frederic Franklin, will be highlighted by a special celebration of Franklin’s 90th birthday on Monday evening, June 21. A distinguished ballet master and choreographer, Franklin was one of the original members of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and has appeared with American Ballet Theatre in recent years. Coppélia is set to the music of Léo Delibes and features scenery by Tony Straiges, costumes by Patricia Zipprodt and lighting by Brad Fields. Franklin’s staging of Coppélia received its Company Premiere in February 1997. Ashley Tuttle, in her debut as Swanilda, will lead the opening night cast of Coppélia on Monday, June 21, dancing opposite Angel Corella as Franz. On Tuesday, June 22, Irina Dvorovenko will be making her debut as Swanilda, with Maxim Beloserkovsky as Franz. Xiomara Reyes and Herman Cornejo will debut in the leading roles at the Wednesday, June 23 matinee and Gillian Murphy and Marcelo Gomes will dance the roles for the first time at the Wednesday, June 23 evening performance.

The season will conclude with eight performances of Romeo and Juliet, choreographed by Sir Kenneth MacMillan and set to music by Sergei Prokofiev. Romeo and Juliet will have its first performance of the season on Monday, June 28, with Alessandra Ferri as Juliet and Angel Corella as Romeo. At the matinee on Wednesday, June 30, Jesus Pastor will debut as Mercutio, with Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Beloserkovsky dancing the leading roles.

Countrywide Financial is the National Sponsor of American Ballet Theatre and Cole Haan is a Leading Benefactor. Graff Jewelers is ABT’s season sponsor of the 2004 Metropolitan Opera House season. ABT’s 2004 spring season is also made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Tickets for American Ballet Theatre’s 2004 Spring Season, priced from $20 to $90, are on sale at the Metropolitan Opera House box office or by calling 212-362-6000.

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