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ABT News

November 6, 2002

HEREAFTER, A CHORAL EVENING CHOREOGRAPHED BY NATALIE WEIR AND STANTON WELCH, ACCOMPANIED BY 100 MEMBER NEW YORK CHORAL SOCIETY, TO HIGHLIGHT 2003 SPRING SEASON AT THE METROPOLITAN OPERA HOUSE, MAY 5-JUNE 28

ONE-TIME ONLY EVENING HONORING THE CULTURAL OLYMPIAD TO INCLUDE WORLD PREMIERE OF ARTEMIS BY LAR LUBOVITCH

Alina Cojocaru to Appear as Guest Artist

American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 Spring Season at the Metropolitan Opera House, May 5 through June 28, was announced today by Kevin McKenzie, Artistic Director.

The eight-week season will feature seven full-length ballets including the World Premiere of HereAfter (working title) in collaboration with the New York Choral Society. The season will also include a special Spring Gala performance and a one-time-only evening in honor of the Cultural Olympiad featuring the World Premiere of Artemis by Lar Lubovitch. Last season’s Company Premieres of Frederick Ashton’s La Fille mal gardée and The Dream will return to ABT’s repertory, as well as Antony Tudor’s Offenbach in the Underworld.

Principal Dancers for the engagement will include Nina Ananiashvili, Maxim Belotserkovsky, Julio Bocca, Jose Manuel Carreńo, Angel Corella, Irina Dvorovenko, Alessandra Ferri, Marcelo Gomes, Guillaume Graffin, Paloma Herrera, Julie Kent, Vladimir Malakhov, Amanda McKerrow, Gillian Murphy, Ethan Stiefel and Ashley Tuttle.

Alina Cojocaru, a principal dancer with The Royal Ballet in London, will make her debut with American Ballet Theatre appearing as a guest artist for two performances as Nikiya in La Bayadčre on Saturday evening, May 10 and Monday evening, May 12. Born in Bucharest, Romania, Cojocaru trained in Kiev and at The Royal Ballet School. She danced with the Kiev Ballet and joined The Royal Ballet in 1999. She was promoted to first soloist in 2000 and to principal dancer the following year.

American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 Metropolitan Opera House season is sponsored by UBS PaineWebber and UBS Warburg, ABT’s National Presenting Sponsors, and Movado Watch Company, a leading benefactor. ABT’s 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.

American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 Spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House will open with a gala performance on Monday, May 5 at 6:30 P.M. For information about the Opening Night Gala, please call the Special Events Office at 212-477-3030, ext. 3239.

The World Premiere of HereAfter (working title), a unique choral evening, will combine the choreography of Stanton Welch and Natalie Weir, accompanied by over 100 members of the New York Choral Society. HereAfter, scheduled for its World Premiere on Friday, May 16, will consist of two separate acts bound together in one theme. Ms. Weir will choreograph the first act to John Adams’ Harmonium, and Mr. Welch’s choreography for the second act will be set to Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana. HereAfter features costumes and scenery by Santo Loquasto and lighting by Brian MacDevitt.

The Cultural Olympiad will be celebrated by American Ballet Theatre on Tuesday, May 20 with a special salute to the culture of Greece. Internationally acclaimed film director Costa Gavras will direct the evening, which will feature filmed projections and readings by Greek and American personalities. This special gala program in honor of the Cultural Olympiad, will include performances by two renowned Greek artists, opera singer Agnes Baltsa and George Dalaras and his orchestra. The evening will also feature the World Premiere of Lar Lubovitch’s Artemis, a full company work inspired by the Greek myth of Diana and Acteon. Artemis is set to a commissioned score composed by Elliot Goldenthal.

The first of two repertory programs on ABT’s Spring schedule will be presented May 6 through 8 and will include Antony Tudor’s Offenbach in the Underworld. Staged by Donald Mahler, Offenbach in the Underworld, with sets and costumes by Kay Ambrose and lighting by Brad Fields, received its ABT Company Premiere on October 24, 2002. The ballet, which is set to Offenbach’s score, arranged and orchestrated by George Crum, depicts French café society in the 1870’s.

The second repertory program, scheduled for June 23 through June 25, will feature Lar Lubovitch’s Artemis and last season’s Company Premiere of Frederick Ashton’s The Dream. Alessandra Ferri and Ethan Stiefel will dance the lead roles of Titania and Oberon at the season’s first performance of the ballet on Monday evening, June 23. Staged by Anthony Dowell and Christopher Carr, The Dream is set to music by Felix Mendelssohn, with sets and costumes by David Walker and lighting by John B. Read. The Dream is presented in memory of Clarence Y. Palitz, Jr. by his family.

Full-length ballets scheduled for ABT’s Spring Season at the Metropolitan Opera House include La Bayadčre, which will have eight performances, beginning on May 9 with Julie Kent, Ethan Stiefel and Irina Dvorovenko in the leading roles. Choreographed by Natalia Makarova after Marius Petipa, La Bayadčre features scenery by PierLuigi Samaritani, costumes by Theoni V. Aldredge and lighting by Toshiro Ogawa. The full-length production of La Bayadčre received its World Premiere by ABT in May, 1980 at the Metropolitan Opera House.

Frederick Ashton’s La Fille mal gardée is scheduled for seven performances beginning Friday, May 23 with Xiomara Reyes and Angel Corella in the leading roles of Lise and Colas. This production of La Fille mal gardée with choreography by Frederick Ashton and staging by Alexander Grant, Grant Coyle and Christopher Carr, received its ABT Premiere on May 31, 2002. The ballet features music by Ferdinand Hérold, freely adapted and arranged by John Lanchbery, scenery by Osbert Lancaster and lighting by Brad Fields. ABT gratefully acknowledges Julia and David H. Koch for their generous underwriting of this production.

Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet returns to ABT’s repertoire on Thursday, May 29 with Alessandra Ferri and Julio Bocca performing the title roles. Choreographed by Sir Kenneth MacMillan, Romeo and Juliet features scenery and costumes by Nicholas Georgiadis and lighting by Thomas Skelton. The ballet, which will be given 11 performances, May 29 through 31 and June 6 through 11, was premiered by ABT in January, 1985.

Don Quixote, staged by Kevin McKenzie and Susan Jones, after the choreography of Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky, will be given 10 performances, June 2 through June 5 and June 12 through 16. Paloma Herrera and Jose Manuel Carreńo will dance the leading roles for the first performance of the season. Set to music by Ludwig Minkus and arranged by Jack Everly, Don Quixote has scenery and costumes by Santo Loquasto and lighting by Natasha Katz. Mr. McKenzie’s and Ms. Jones’ staging of the current production was first performed by ABT in June, 1995.

Closing the season will be Kevin McKenzie’s production of the Tchaikovsky classic, Swan Lake, generously underwritten by the Rosh Foundation. Swan Lake will have its first performance of the season on Tuesday, June 17 with Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Belotserkovsky in the leading roles. The ballet will be given an additional 10 performances June 18 through 21 and June 26 through 28. Swan Lake, staged by Kevin McKenzie with scenery and costumes by Zack Brown and lighting by Duane Schuler, was given its World Premiere in March, 2000 at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

ABTalks, 30-minute pre-curtain discussions, are held one hour prior to performances and are free to ABT ticket holders.

ABTKids, a special one-hour performance for children and their families, is scheduled for Saturday, May 17 at 11:30 A.M. Narrated by ABT’s artistic staff, ABTKids presents age-appropriate excerpts from the season’s repertory. All tickets for ABTKids are priced at $15. Reckson Associates is the Principal Corporate Sponsor of ABTKids. Additional support is provided by the MetLife Foundation

American Ballet Theatre’s productions of HereAfter, The Dream and La Fille mal gardée have also been made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding for these productions has been provided by Philip Morris Companies Inc.

Subscriptions for American Ballet Theatre’s 2003 Metropolitan Opera House season are on sale now by phone at 212-362-6000 and by mail. For more information, visit ABT’s website at www.abt.org.

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