The Washington Ballet's NEXTsteps program opens this week. Here are company dancers Ashley Murphy-Wilson and Alexandros Papajohn. Procopio Photography, Courtesy The Washington Ballet.

Onstage This Week: World Ballet Day 2019, John Heginbotham Makes Ballet Debut, and Houston Ballet Comes to NYC!

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


World Ballet Day 2019 Is Here!

Like us, you might feel like every day is World Ballet Day, but that doesn't mean we're not excited for the all-day live stream event coming our way on Wednesday October 23. This year's edition is co-hosted by three major international companies—The Royal Ballet, The Australian Ballet and The Bolshoi Ballet—but it also features streams from over 30 companies worldwide including Hong Kong Ballet, Paris Opéra Ballet, English National Ballet and Pacific Northwest Ballet. Check out the Facebook pages for World Ballet Day, The Royal and Australian Ballet for up-to-date information, schedules and links to the streams.

John Heginbotham Breaks Into Ballet

The Washington Ballet opens its fall season with NEXTsteps, a program devoted to world premieres. October 23–27, the company performs works by a diverse pool of choreographers: Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Jessica Lang and John Heginbotham.

While Ochoa and Lang are ballet-world veterans, Heginbotham is new to the scene. "John is one of the most creative, musical and theatrical choreographic voices today," says TWB artistic director Julie Kent. A former member of the Mark Morris Dance Group, Heginbotham most recently choreographed the innovative Broadway revival of Oklahoma! His new ballet will be a palindrome in movement and in music, using a suite of high-energy and quick-moving percussion quartets composed by Jason Treuting of So Percussion and played live. —Cadence Neenan

Hosuton Ballet Onstage at New York City Center

Seldom seen on the East Coast, Houston Ballet heads to New York City Center this week with a triple-bill program. The October 24-26 run features two New York premieres: Mark Morris' 2015 The Letter V and Justin Peck's 2019 Reflections. Also on the docket is Aszure Barton's all-male Come In.

ABT Fall Season Closes With Two Premieres and a Homecoming

American Ballet Theatre's fall Lincoln Center season closes October 27, but not before throwing another two premieres our way. October 23 marks the world premiere of former ABT dancer Gemma Bond's A Time There Was and the New York premiere of company principal James Whiteside's The New Romantics.

On October 26, ABT honors Herman Cornejo, who is celebrating his 20th anniversary with the company this year, with a special performance including a pièce d'occasion. Cornejo will be joined by his sister, former ABT soloist and Boston Ballet principal Erica Cornejo, for a performance of Ana María Stekelman's 1998 El Chamuyo.

Ballet Fantastique is Tutu Spooky

Ballet Fantastique co-directors Donna and Hannah Bontrager present the world premiere of Nevermore: Stories of Edgar Allan Poe October 25–27 in Eugene, Oregon. The ballet features some of Poe's most macabre and best-loved stories and poems, with original music played live by local folk orchestra Mood Area 52.

Boston Ballet Provides a Platform for Company Choreographers

October 24-25, Boston Ballet presents BB@home, an intimate black box theater performance that offers company members a chance to present their choreography. This year's program, ChoreographHER, features new works by six female Boston Ballet dancers: Lia Cirio, Chyrstyn Fentroy, Lauren Herfindahl, Sage Humphries, Abigail Merlis and Joy Womack. Learn more about the ChoreograpHER initiative in the above video.

Cincinnati Ballet Presents Septime Webre's "The Wizard of Oz" 

Last year, Colorado Ballet, Kansas City Ballet and Royal Winnipeg Ballet joined forces to produce Septime Webre's new The Wizard of Oz. This week, the yellow brick road extends to Ohio; Cincinnati Ballet presents the full-length ballet for the first time October 25-November 3. Catch a glimpse of rehearsal above (and check out this video of the company's wardrobe department bedazzling Dorothy's shoes).

Sarasota Ballet Opens Its Season with a Tribute to Ricardo Graziano

The first program of Sarasota Ballet's 2019-20 season runs October 25-27. Titled Graziano, Retrospective, it's a tribute to principal dancer and resident choreographer Ricardo Graziano's 10th anniversary with the company, and features three of his original works: Shostakovich Suite (2011), En las Calles de Murcia (2015) and In a State of Weightlessness (2015).

Latest Posts


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.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
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!

Keep reading SHOW LESS
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?

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks