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Onstage This Week: TWB Presents a New "Sleeping Beauty," NBoC Celebrates Guillame Côté, ENB Returns to the U.S. After 30 Years, and More!

National Ballet of Canada's Guillaume Côté, Xiao Nan Yu and artists of the ballet in Apollo. Cylla von Tiedemann, Courtesy NBoC.

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


English National Ballet Brings Akram Khan's "Giselle" to Chicago

This week, English National Ballet comes to the U.S. for the first time in 30 years. The London-based company brings Akram Khan's much-lauded 2016 Giselle to Chicago's Harris Theater, February 28–March 2. Using original music by Vincenzo Lamagna, based on Adolphe Adam's original score, Khan's modern take blends Indian kathak and contemporary movement to tell the story of migrant workers and landlords, as opposed to the traditional peasants and aristocrats.

The Washington Ballet Debuts New Production of "The Sleeping Beauty" 

February 27-March 3, The Washington Ballet debuts a new production of The Sleeping Beauty at The Kennedy Center. Artistic director Julie Kent and associate artistic director Victor Barbee restaged Marius Petipa's beloved 1890 original to fit the size and scale of TWB.

Ballet Fantastique Presents New "Odyssey" Story Ballet

Ballet Fantastique debuts The Odyssey: The Ballet, a brand new full-length story ballet based on Homer's classic tale, March 1-3 in Eugene, OR. Choreographed and produced by company directors (and mother-daughter duo) Donna and Hannah Bontrager, the ballet features live looping electric violin by Cullen Vance. Audiences everywhere can watch a live broadcast of the March 3, 2:30 pm PST performance here.

NBoC Celebrates Guillaume Côté's 20th Company Anniversary 

National Ballet of Canada brings four works to stages March 1-3 and March 20-21, headlined by George Balanchine's Apollo. The program also includes the Canadian premiere of Julia Adam's Night, Robert Binet's The Sea Above, The Sky Below, and a new adaptation of Paquita by Christopher Stowell. The March 2 performances features principal dancer Guillaume Côté in the title role of Apollo in celebration of his 20th anniversary with the company. Hear him discuss the role in the above video.

Lucas Jervies' "Human Abstract" is Back at Louisville Ballet

Australian choreographer Lucas Jervies' full-length ballet Human Abstract returns to the Louisville Ballet stage February 28-March 3. The ballet, which made its Louisville Ballet debut in 2017, is a co-production with Louisville Visual Art, and is billed as a "riveting psychological drama."

"Don Quixote" Returns to BalletMet

BalletMet brings back Don Quixote March 1-3 at the Ohio Theatre. To get into the Don Q spirit, BalletMet made a video featuring company dancer Kristie Latham showing off some of her best fan work, with tips on how to make a fan work for you.

Los Angeles Ballet Brings Back Two Classics

Los Angeles Ballet embarks on a mini tour of Southern California March 2, 9 and 16 with a program featuring two romantic classics by master choreographers: George Balanchine's Serenade and August Bournonville's La Sylphide.

Texas Ballet Theatre Presents Three Company Favorites 

Texas Ballet Theater's mixed bill, running March 1-3, features three modern works: William Forsythe's In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, Christopher Bruce's Ghost Dances and TBT dancer Andre Silva's 11:11. Silva's work is focused on contemporary expression, set to a mix of tribal, pop and electronic music.

The Conversation
News
Ma Cong in the studio with Tulsa Ballet. Courtesy Tulsa Ballet.

Without him we wouldn't have The Nutcracker, Swan Lake or Sleeping Beauty. But how much do you know about Pytor Ilyich Tchaikovsky, the man behind classical ballet's most recognizable music? Did you know that the Russian composer hid his homosexuality for much of his life? He also struggled with depression; there's been speculation that his death in 1893 was in fact a suicide.

Tulsa Ballet resident choreographer Ma Cong dramatically recounts his life in a new full-length ballet titled Tchaikovsky: The Man Behind the Music, premiering March 29-31. If you think a story ballet about the most renowned composer of story ballets set to, yes, a Tchaikovsky score, is a bit meta, you wouldn't be wrong. But considering the renewed importance of LGBTQ rights in society, it's a ballet perfectly timed to our era. In Russia, censorship still asserts that Tchaikovsky was not gay. The subject also calls to mind backlash surrounding an LGBTQ-themed work at Louisville Ballet just last month.

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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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