Ballet Austin's Aara Krumpe in The Firebird. After 20 years, this is Krumpe's final season with the company. Photo by Tony Spielberg, Courtesy Ballet Austin.

Onstage This Week: NYCB Opens Fall Season With "Jewels," The Australian Ballet's Debut of "Spartacus," Firebirds, Swans and More!

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've pulled together some highlights.


New York City Ballet's Fall Season Opens with "Jewels" 

New York City Ballet's fall season opens September 18 at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater with six performances of Jewels. George Balanchine's beloved triptych is celebrated as the first full-length abstract ballet. When it debuted in 1967, Balanchine explained the inspiration behind his new masterpiece to an interviewer by saying, "The whole thing was—I like jewels." Catch a glimpse of "Emeralds," "Rubies" and "Diamonds" in the above trailer. The first week of NYCB's season also includes an all-Balanchine program featuring Concerto Barocco, Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux, Stravinsky Violin Concerto and Symphony in C.

The Australian Ballet Debuts a New "Spartacus" 

September 18–29, The Australian Ballet's much awaited Spartacus debuts in Melbourne. Choreographer Lucas Jervies' new production retells the classical story of a warrior leading a slave rebellion against the Roman empire with music by Aram Khachaturian and sets and costumes by Jérôme Kaplan, known for his work on Alexei Ratmansky's Cinderella. The Australian Ballet has put out a series of behind-the-scenes videos giving viewers an insider look at the sets, costumes and choreography of the, ambitious production. Spartacus returns November 9–24 in Sydney.

Pacific Northwest Ballet Kicks Off Jerome Robbins Festival

Celebrations of Jerome Robbins' centennial are still in full swing. Pacific Northwest Ballet presented an all-Robbins program in Paris this summer, and now on September 21, they're bringing it back home. PNB's two-week Robbins festival featuring seven iconic ballets: In the Night, West Side Story Suite, Afternoon of a Faun, Other Dances, Circus Polka, The Concert and Dances at a Gathering. Check out an excerpt of the hilarious "Mistake Waltz" section of The Concert in the above video.

Nashville Ballet Opens Season with "Swan Lake" 

Nashville Ballet is opening their season with a bang: Their upgraded Swan Lake runs September 21–23. Artistic director Paul Vasterling (celebrating his 20th year with the company) made a number of choreographic updates, and Odette and the swan corps will be sporting new costumes. In anticipation, Nashville Ballet just put out this video describing the process behind creating 28 new swan tutus. Watch to see how many hours go into making a tutu—we bet you'll be surprised.

"The Firebird" Lights Up Ballet Austin's Season Opener 

Ballet Austin's 2018–19 season opens September 21–23 with a program featuring artistic director Stephen Mills' The Firebird juxtaposed by Lar Lubovitch's fluid Dvořák Serenade. Performances will feature company dancer Aara Krumpe in one of her best-known roles, the Firebird. Krumpe is embarking on her final season with Ballet Austin after a 20-year tenure, the longest of any dancer in the company's history.

Smuin Ballet's 25th-Anniversary Season Opens with Mixed Rep Program 

San Francisco–based Smuin Ballet launches its 25th anniversary season September 21 with Dance Series 01, a mixed repertoire program showing the breadth of the company. Works include Trey McIntyre's Blue Until June to music by Etta James, a trio of works by current and former company dancers, and two works by Michael Smuin himself: Schubert Scherzo and Eternal Idol. Learn a bit more about the company's 25-year history in the above video.

Related Articles From Your Site
Related Articles Around the Web

Latest Posts


Whitney Ingram

Revisiting Julie Kent's Dance Bag, 20 Years Later

Julie Kent was our very first Show & Tell when Pointe magazine launched in spring of 2000. Then a principal with American Ballet Theatre, Kent carried a second bag entirely dedicated to her pointe shoes. Twenty years later, she is now the artistic director of The Washington Ballet, and no longer needs to tote her pointe shoes. "For 40 years they were like a part of my body," says Kent. "And now they're not part of the landscape until my daughter's old enough to go on pointe." Nevertheless, Kent's current role keeps her in the studio. She always carries practice clothes and ballet slippers for teaching and rehearsals.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Courtesy Tiler Peck

Tiler Peck's Top 10 Tips for Training at Home

On March 15, New York City Ballet principal Tiler Peck announced to her 172,000-plus Instagram followers that she'd be teaching a live class from her family's home in Bakersfield, California, where she's currently waiting out COVID-19. Little did she know that she'd receive such a viral response. Since then, Peck has offered daily Instagram LIVE classes Monday through Friday at 10 am PST/1 pm EST, plus an occasional Saturday class and Sunday stretch/Pilates combo. "The reaction was just so overwhelming," she says. "These classes are keeping me sane, and giving me something to look forward to."

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

It’s OK to Grieve: Coping with the Emotional Toll of Canceled Dance Events

Grace Campbell was supposed to be onstage this week. Selected for the Kansas City Ballet School's invitation-only Kansas City Youth Ballet, her performance was meant to be the highlight of her senior year. "I was going to be Queen of the Dryads in Don Quixote, and also dance in a couple of contemporary pieces, so I was really excited," she says. A week later, the group was supposed to perform at the Youth America Grand Prix finals in NYC. In May, Grace was scheduled to take the stage again KC Ballet School's "senior solos" show and spring performance.

Now, all those opportunities are gone.

The COVID-19 pandemic has consumed the dance community. The performance opportunities students have worked all year for have been devoured with it. Those canceled shows might have been your only chance to dance for an audience all year. Or they might have been the dance equivalent to a cap and gown—a time to be acknowledged after years of work.

You can't replace what is lost, and with that comes understandable grief. Here's how to process your feelings of loss, and ultimately use them to help yourself move forward as a dancer.

Keep reading SHOW LESS