Maya Beiser and Wendy Whelan in THE DAY

Nils Schlebusch, Courtesy Jacob's Pillow Dance

Onstage This Week: Wendy Whelan in "THE DAY," Vail Dance Fest Week 2, World Premiere at American Contemporary Ballet and More!

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


Wendy Whelan Returns to the Stage

This week, New York City Ballet associate artistic director Wendy Whelan joins celebrated cellist Maya Beiser onstage at Jacob's Pillow in THE DAY, choreographed by postmodern icon Lucinda Childs. Exploring memory and resilience, this multi-genre collaboration between Beiser and Childs features music by Pulitzer Prize–winning composer David Lang. After its July 31–August 4 run at Jacob's Pillow, THE DAY is scheduled to tour to New York City and Washington, DC.

Stars Descend on the Vail Dance Festival 

The second week of the Vail Dance Festival has arrived, and with it a deluge of stars and premieres. July 30 marks the the festival premiere of BalletX in Annabelle Lopez Ochoa's new The Little Prince. On July 31, M.A.I. co-founders Lil Buck and Jon Boogz, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Hope Boykin and New York City Ballet principal Lauren Lovette join forces for UpClose: Just Dances, a rehearsal-style performance.

On August 2 and August 3, things get even more glamorous. The two International Evenings of Dance feature a seemingly endless list of stars from NYCB, American Ballet Theatre, the Mikhailovsky Ballet, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Pam Tanowitz Dance, Dorrance Dance and much more. A handful of the many ballet highlights include Catherine Hurlin and Julian MacKay in a pas de deux from Don Quixote, Unity Phelan and Calvin Royal III in excerpts from Apollo and Maria Kochetkova and Joseph Gordon in a pas de deux from La Sylphide.

World Premiere of "Death and the Maiden" at American Contemporary Ballet

American Contemporary Ballet artistic director Lincoln Jones presents the world premiere of Death and the Maiden August 1-11 at The Fashion Theater in Los Angeles. Jones' newest ballet is set to Franz Schubert's string quartet of the same name, which he wrote in 1824 as a testament to his own mortality. Check out ACB's Instagram for beautiful rehearsal shots of this new work.

Stars of American Ballet Take Aspen

New York City Ballet principal Daniel Ulbricht's summer pickup company, Stars of American Ballet, takes the stage in Aspen on August 3. The troupe, which is being presented by Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, is bringing classic works including George Balanchine's Tarantella, Jerome Robbins' Andantino and Christopher Wheeldon's This Bitter Earth.

Louisville Ballet Presents "Cleopatra: Queen of Kings" Outdoors

July 31-August 4, Louisville Ballet presents Cleopatra: Queen of Kings as part of the company's partnership with Kentucky Shakespeare's Festival in Central Park. Choreographed by Louisville Ballet dancer Erica De La O, Cleopatra is set to an original score by Kentucky-based composer Scott Moore and features step dancers from Western Middle School. This week's performances are all free and open to the public.

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Vikki Sloviter

Sydney Dolan Takes Center Stage at Pennsylvania Ballet

This is Pointe's Summer 2020 cover story. You can subscribe to the magazine here, or click here to purchase this issue.

Just days before the world shuttered under the strain of the coronavirus pandemic, and the curtain came down indefinitely on dance companies everywhere, Pennsylvania Ballet soloist Sydney Dolan debuted Gamzatti in La Bayadère with captivating ease. Her jumps soared, her technique was sound, and her cheeky smile paired with exquisite port de bras was beguiling. Though she didn't know the company would soon cancel the remainder of its season, her beautiful performance acted as a kind of send-off into the unknown.

Dolan's career could be described in one word: charmed. At just 19 years old, she's flown through the ranks at PAB, debuted a long list of roles, won a Princess Grace Award and been named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch." Yet it's her challenges that have shaped not only her training but her outlook, giving her a solid foundation for becoming one of Pennsylvania Ballet's rising stars.

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Courtesy Alonzo King LINES Ballet

Alonzo King LINES Ballet Reconnects with Nature in This 5-Part Video Series

Earlier this month, Alonzo King LINES Ballet released the first in a series of five dance films, part of a new project entitled "There Is No Standing Still." The series features company members spanning 10 cities and four continents dancing amid their outdoor environments, in spaces ranging from quiet forests to rocky deserts to the ocean shore. While COVID-19 has put the company's normal activity on hold and forced the dancers to separate from each other physically, "There Is No Standing Still" allows LINES to create new material together in a different way. Directed by Robert Rosenwasser and edited by Philip Perkins, this installment of five short films incorporates choreography by artistic director Alonzo King and company dancers as they become one with the space around them. Check out the first two, released last month, below.

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VAM/Siggul, Courtesy YAGP

YAGP Has Announced the Winners of the 2020 Pas De Deux Virtual Competition

Last weekend, Youth America Grand Prix took to the internet, hosting its first virtual pas de deux competition. Over the course of three days, YAGP streamed videos from its regional events' highest-ranked competitors for a panel of esteemed judges. And, drum roll please... YAGP has just announced the winners, spanning three categories: Senior Classical, Junior Classical and Contemporary.

You can watch the full virtual awards ceremony, hosted by YAGP director of external affairs Sergey Gordeev, below, or scroll down for the list of winners. And if you're missing the thrill of competition, don't fear: Gordeev announced that registration for the 2021 season will open on July 10, with both in-person and virtual options available.

Congratulations to all!

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