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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.

Ballet Stars
Karolina Kuras, Courtesy NBoC

It's hard to imagine the National Ballet of Canada without ballerina Greta Hodgkinson. Yet this week NBoC announced that the longtime company star will take her final bow in March, as Marguerite in Sir Frederick Ashton's Marguerite and Armand.

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Sponsored by BLOCH
Courtesy BLOCH

Today's ballet dancer needs a lot from a pointe shoe. "What I did 20 years ago is not what these dancers are doing now," says New York City Ballet shoe manager Linnette Roe. "They are expected to go harder, longer days. They are expected to go from sneakers, to pointe shoes, to character shoes, to barefoot and back to pointe shoes all in a day."

The team at BLOCH developed their line of Stretch Pointe shoes to address dancer's most common complaints about the fit and performance of their pointe shoes. "It's a scientific take on the pointe shoe," says Roe. Dancers are taking notice and Stretch Pointe shoes are now worn by stars like American Ballet Theatre principal Isabella Boylston, who stars in BLOCH's latest campaign for the shoes.

We dug into the details of Stretch Pointe's most game-changing features:

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News
Alice Pennefather, Courtesy ROH

You ever just wish that Kenneth MacMillan's iconic production of Romeo and Juliet could have a beautiful love child with the 1968 film starring Olivia Hussey? (No, not Baz Luhrmann's version. We are purists here.)

Wish granted: Today, the trailer for a new film called Romeo and Juliet: Beyond Words was released, featuring MacMillan's choreography and with what looks like all the cinematic glamour we could ever dream of:

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Viral Videos

What do Diana Vishneva, Olga Smirnova, Kristina Shapran and Maria Khoreva all have in common? These women, among the most impressive talents to graduate from the Vaganova Ballet Academy in recent years, all studied under legendary professor Lyudmila Kovaleva. Kovaleva, a former dancer with the Kirov Ballet (now the Mariinsky), is beloved by her students and admired throughout the ballet world for her ability to pull individuality and artistry out of the dancers she trains. Like any great teacher, Kovaleva is remarkably generous with her wealth of knowledge; it seems perfect, then, that she appears as the Fairy of Generosity in this clip from a 1964 film of the Kirov's The Sleeping Beauty.

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