Colorado Ballet artistic director Gil Boggs started planning a year ago for the major production of “Swan Lake,” which opens Oct. 11 and runs …
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Colorado Ballet artistic director Gil Boggs started planning a
year ago for the major production of “Swan Lake,” which opens Oct.
11 and runs through Oct. 26.
He contracted with ballet masters Amanda McKerrow and John
Gardner, colleagues from Boggs’ American Ballet Theatre days, to
set and update the four-act production for his company,
“This is a very traditional production,” he says, with original
choreography by Marius Petipas and Lev Ivanov. McKerrow and Gardner
have added new choreography to the waltz in Act I and made some
choreography changes for the swans in Act IV. She coached the
ballerinas who will dance the lead as Odette and the evil
look-alike, Princess Odile. The double role is a challenge for any
dancer, Boggs said.
Tchiakovsky was commissioned in 1876, for 800 rubles, to write
music for the Bolshoi Ballet’s new production, based on Russian and
German folk tales and created a worldwide classic. An Internet
search brings up stories about the lack of coordination between
composer, ballet master and costumer that make one wonder how it
ever came together at all in February 1877. The Petipas/Ivanov
choreography came later, in 1895.
Three pairs of dancers alternate as the doomed lovers Prince
Siegfried and the lovely Princess Odette, who is transformed into a
swan by evil Baron Von Rothbart, a curse that only can be broken by
royal marriage vows.
Principal dancers Maria Mosina and Igor Vassine, as well as
Sharon Wehner and Koichi Kubo (returned from a stint with Smuin
Ballet in San Francisco) and Chandra Kuykendall and Alexi Tyukov
will partner in the leading roles. Boggs said Mosina has danced the
role previously, but the other two ballerinas have not.
A 50-piece orchestra will perform with the dancers, filling the
Ellie Caulkins Opera House with Tchaikovsky’s beautiful score.
Performances at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House, Denver
Performing Arts Complex, 14th and Curtis in Denver, will be at 7:30
p.m. Oct. 11, 17, 18, 24, 25; 6:30 p.m. Oct. 15, 22; 2 p.m. Oct.
12, 18, 19, 25, 26. Tickets cost $19 to $145, 303-837-8888, e-mail
online at www.coloradoballet.org.
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