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Onstage This Week: Ballet Austin and Kansas City Ballet Find Never Never Land, Cleveland Ballet Falls Down the Rabbit Hole, and More

Kansas City Ballet Dancers Tempe Ostergren and Dillon Malinski. Photo by Kenny Johnson, Courtesy KCB.

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


New Peter Pans at Ballet Austin and Kansas City Ballet

Never Never Land becomes a reality this week with two exciting new productions. Kansas City Ballet presents world premiere choreography by artistic director Devon Carney in Peter Pan May 11-20, while Texas audiences can experience the Austin premiere of Paul Vasterling's acclaimed Peter Pan May 11-13. We love this fun trailer that Ballet Austin put together.



World Premiere of Cleveland Ballet's Alice

Choreographer Margo Sappington's re-telling of the famous Lewis Carroll novels, simply titled Alice, opens May 11 in Cleveland. The Mad Hatter is ready—are you?


City Ballet of San Diego's New Carmina Burana, Set in the Jazz Age

Running May 11-13, Geoffrey Gonzalez's new Carmina Burana is set in New York City at the end of the Roaring 20s and the beginning of the Great Depression. He created the ballet to the original cantata by German composer Carl Orff; performances will feature a full live chorus and orchestra. Catch a behind-the-scenes glimpse below. Also on the program is resident choreographer Elizabeth Wistrich's Mozart's Concerto for Flute and Harp.


The Mariinsky's Maxim Petrov Makes His North American Choreographic Debut in Atlanta

Atlanta Ballet's Bach to Broadway program, running May 11-13, features George Balanchine's Who Cares?, Helgi Tomasson's 7 for Eight, and the world premiere of Concerto Armonico, choreographed by Mariinsky Theatre dancer Maxim Petrov. This work marks Petrov's North American choreographic debut; hear him explain the "Americanness" of his new ballet in the below video.


World Premiere by Katarzyna Skarpetowska for Richmond Ballet

The Virginia-based company's final Studio Series performance opens tonight with Gargoyles, choreographed in 2012 by former New York City Ballet principal Philip Neal. Also on the program is a world premiere by Katarzyna Skarpetowska, one of Dance Magazine's 2016 "25 to Watch." If these costume designs are any indication, this new work, titled Akwarium, is sure to leave audiences dreaming of the ocean.


Connecticut Ballet Pays Homage to the Classics

May 11-13, Connecticut Ballet presents a triple-bill titled Russian Classics! including Marius Petipa's Raymonda Variations, Darrel Grand-Moultrie's contemporary PULSE and Michel Fokine's one-act Petrouchka. Fokine created this work in 1911 for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes to music by Igor Stravinsky. CT Ballet last presented Petrouchka in 1997 with current artistic director Brett Raphael dancing the lead; Raphael was coached by Vladimir Dokoudovsky, who worked directly with Fokine on revivals of the piece for Ballets Russes. We love this photo of Stravinsky with Vaslav Nijinsky in his original Petrouchka costume.


Island Moving Company Presents an Evening of Premieres

This Newport, RI-based contemporary ballet company is presenting a world premiere by Maurice Causey May 12. Get to know Causey and his new work in the below video. The evening will also celebrate the Leonard Bernstein Centennial with a performance of IMC artistic director Miki Ohlsen's Chichester Palms and new works by Boston Ballet's Kevin Jenkins and IMC associate artistic director Danielle Genest.

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Master pointe shoe fitter Josephine Lee of the California-based ThePointeShop catches up with Moscow-based Russian State Ballet Theater dancer Matisse Love to hear all of her pointe shoe hacks, particularly her tips for pancaking. Before joining Russian State Ballet Theater, Love, a Los Angeles native, graduated from the Bolshoi Ballet Academy and had a recurring role on the TV show Bunheads.

The Royal Ballet's Vadim Muntagirov and Marianela Nuñez in La Bayadère. Photo by Bill Cooper, Courtesy ROH.

Do you ever wish you could teleport to London and casually stroll into The Royal Opera House to see some of the world's best-loved ballets? Well, we have a solution for you: The Royal Ballet's 2018-19 cinema season.

Whether live or recorded, the seven ballet programs listed below, streaming now through next October, will deliver all of the magic that The Royal Ballet has to offer straight to your local movie theater. Can you smell the popcorn already?

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Pacific Northwest Ballet principals Rachel Foster and Jonathan Porretta took their final curtain call on June 9, 2019. Photo by Lindsay Thomas, Courtesy PNB

We all know dance careers are temporary. But this season, it feels like we're saying goodbye to more stars than usual.

Many have turned to social media to share their last curtain calls, thoughts on what it feels like to say farewell to performing, and insights into the ways that dancing has made them who they are. After years of dedicating your life to the studio and stage, the decision to stop dancing is always an emotional one. Each dancer handles it in their own way—whether that means cheekily admitting to having an existential crisis, or simply leaving with no regrets about what you did for love.

We will miss these dancers' performances, but can't wait to see what awaits each in their next chapters.

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Ballet Stars
Houston Ballet's Yuriko Kajiya and Linnar Looris in "The Merry Widow." Photo by Amitava Sarkar, Courtesy of Houston Ballet.

With Houston Ballet's Sunday performance of Marie, the company bade farewell not only to its spring season, but to two of its most beloved leading men: principal Jared Matthews and first soloist Linnar Looris each took their final bows on the Wortham Theater Center stage. Both men will travel soon to Estonia, where they will work together to lead the Estonian National Ballet, with Looris serving as the company's artistic director and Matthews as the assistant to the artistic director.

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