Nevada Ballet Theatre in Balanchine's "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue." Photo by Virginia Trudeau, Courtesy NBT.

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

New York City Ballet's Jerome Robbins Festival Opens with World Premiere by Justin Peck

This week marks the start of NYCB's Robbins 100 festival, running May 3-20, celebrating the centennial of choreographer Jerome Robbins. The company will dance 19 Robbins' ballets as well as a world premiere by resident choreographer Justin Peck inspired by Robbins and set to a score by Leonard Bernstein. The centennial of Bernstein, Robbins' longtime collaborator, will also be celebrated this year. This striking trailer offers glimpses of some of Robbins' most beloved ballets, including Fancy Free and The Cage.

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Good evening, and welcome to the show. Please take a minute to take out your cell phones and tweet.


Yup, Diablo Ballet is looking for real-time Tweeters. For their upcoming performance next month, the company is creating complimentary "tweet seats." A section at the back of the house will be reserved for audience members who promise to tweet throughout the show in exchange for a free ticket. Diablo Ballet hopes to encourage "citizen critics," and encourage artistic conversation between audience members. 


The performance takes place March 2 at 7:30 pm at Shadelands Arts Center in Walnut Creek. The company will present the West Coast premiere of Christopher Wheeldon's Mercurial Manoeurves, along with KT Nelson's Escaping Game and a new work by David Fonnegra set to Frank Sinatra classics.


Any Bay Area resident aged 16 and older with an active Twitter account can apply for a free seat. Just send your name, phone number, city and a link to your twitter account to Dan Meagher at by February 22. Participation is by invitation only.

Choreographers get inspiration from all sources. This winter, Diablo Ballet's Robert Dekkers is getting his from Twitter. Starting today, the California company is inviting people to Tweet their ideas for a new ballet using the hashtag #DiabloWebBallet. You can suggest emotions, moods, specific steps or music. Voting closes February 14, when Dekkers will choose the seven best suggestions and then spend two weeks putting them all together for The Web Ballet, to premiere March 1. Diablo Ballet's known for its embrace of social media to engage audiences—last year they were the first professional dance company on the West Coast to invite viewers to live Tweet their performances. Check out more about their latest project at

When Diablo Ballet of California announced its new “Web Ballet” in January, nobody knew quite what to think. The company asked its fans to help choreograph the ballet, requesting Tweeted suggestions for the emotion of the dancers, the mood of the piece and even specific steps. Voters also chose their favorite of three music options.

Valentine’s Day marked the end of submissions, and Diablo Ballet has shared some of the tweets they received. The hundreds of recommendations are tremendously diverse, but they all show how excited the fans were to be involved. Here are a few of our favorites:

#DiabloWebBallet dance the small everyday good deeds ppl do. We all see the awfulness, pls show some good. tks 4 listening

@LeslieUdland: Love this idea! My suggestions: 1) Mood: solitary/alone 2) Emotion: pensive...afraid to move 3) Dance steps: Various battements - basic and generic, until one "discovers" that movement frees 4) Setting: Insane asylum

: Dancers: sassy; Mood: intelligent; Moves: not about freakish flexibility, but subtlety. Can't wait to see the outcome!

: Dancing on guitars, pedals, keyboards, other things that make noise.

: Ella, 7yrs old, says #DiabloWebBallet should include "sashay sashay step step leap.”

Now that the fans have had their say, it's up to Diablo Ballet artistic director Lauren Jonas and choreographer Robert Dekkers to choose from the suggestions and get working on the piece, which will be performed March 1 and 2 in California. Those who submitted winning suggestions will receive complimentary tickets, so they'll be able to enjoy the ballet they helped produce.


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