Boston Ballet in Jerome Robbins' Fancy Free. Photo by Gene Schiavone, Courtesy Boston Ballet.

Onstage This Week: Boston Ballet Celebrates Jerome Robbins, Island Moving Company Performs "Peter Pan" Ballet on a Ship, And More!

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


Boston Ballet's Season Opener Celebrates Jerome Robbins' Centennial

Though we're sad to see summer come to an end, we couldn't be happier to see companies back in season and back on the stage. Boston Ballet opens their 2018/2019 season September 6-16 with Genius at Play, a celebration of Jerome Robbins' centennial. The program features a range of Robbins' most loved works: Interplay, to music by Morton Gould, Fancy Free, the first of Robbins' many collaborations with Leonard Bernstein, and the company premiere of Glass Pieces to a score by Philip Glass.

Ballet Memphis Opens Its 30th Anniversary Season 

Ballet Memphis enters its 30th anniversary season September 8-9 with a program titled Shelter, featuring Julia Adam's Devil's Fruit, Uri Sand's Salve and a world premiere by company ballet master Brian McSween. The title of the bill refers to Ballet Memphis' new building, finished in 2017, and the sense of shelter that it aims to provide for the city's dance community.

Island Moving Company's Site Specific "Peter Pan"... On a Tall Ship 

September 6-9, Island Moving Company is bringing their full-length Peter Pan story ballet to a very different kind of stage, ahem, boat. The Rhode Island-based company will present Second Star to the Right: A Tale of Hook and Pan on the decks and rigging of the tall ship Oliver Hazard Perry and the surrounding docks of Fort Adams. IMC has a tradition of site-specific works: Their repertoire includes Newport Nutcracker at Rosecliff, set in a mansion, and Dracula at Belcourt Castle. The company made a series of trailers highlighting different characters in the ballet; check out Peter Pan's above, and click here for more on Wendy, Captain Hook and more.

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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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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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Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy ABT

Defining and Refining Musicality: How to Tune In and Develop Your Artistic Voice

Ask a hundred people what musicality is, and you're likely to get a hundred different answers. "Musicality is where an artist's personality shines brightest," says Smuin Contemporary Ballet member Ben Needham-Wood. For American Ballet Theatre soloist Skylar Brandt, "it's what distinguishes one dancer from another. It helps me express myself more vividly and emotionally."

Teachers encourage it, directors seek it out and dancers who possess it bring choreography to life in compelling ways. But what exactly is musicality, and how can dancers get more of it?

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