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CAROLINA BALLET ANNOUNCES 2010-2011 SEASON

Thirteenth Season to Sparkle with New Ballets and Favorites from the Repertory

Carolina Ballet is pleased to announce the line-up of productions for the company’s 2010-2011 season highlighting ballets from the company’s repertory as well as five premieres for Triangle audiences. Seven productions are planned, plus the tenth anniversary of the annual Nutcracker. The productions will be presented at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium (RMA) and the AJ Fletcher Opera Theater (AJF) of the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts. The schedule for the company’s thirteenth season is as follows:

Carolina Ballet's Firebird

Lilyan Vigo in Carolina Ballet's Firebird; Photo by Russ Howe

Firebird – September 16-October 3, 2010; 11 performances – AJF

Choreography, Robert Weiss; Music, Igor Stravinsky
With new ballet by principal dancer Timour Bourtasenkov

Dracula (world premiere) – October 14-31, 2010; 11 performances – AJF

Choreography by Lynne Taylor-Corbett; Music by J. Mark Scearce
With new work by Robert Weiss

Pinocchio (Raleigh premiere) – November 24-28, 2010; 5 performances – RMA

Choreography by Bruce Wells; music by Nicola Piovani and Amilcare Ponchielli

Lara O'Brien in Carolina Ballet's The Ugly Duckling; Photo by Russ Howe

Lara O'Brien in Carolina Ballet's The Ugly Duckling; Photo by Russ Howe

The Ugly Duckling – February 17-March 6, 2011; 11 performances, AJF

Choreography by Lynne Taylor-Corbett; Music by Michael Moricz
With new ballet by Robert Weiss

Melissa Podcasy and Timour Bourtasenkov  in Carolina Ballet's Carmen; Photo by Barbour Photography

Melissa Podcasy and Timour Bourtasenkov in Carolina Ballet's Carmen; Photo by Barbour Photography

Carmen – March 24-April 10, 2011; 11 performances, AJF

Choreography by Robert Weiss; Music by Georges Bizet

Carolina Ballet Company in Monet Impressions; Photo by The Right Image Photography

Carolina Ballet Company in Monet Impressions; Photo by The Right Image Photography

Monet Impressions – April 14-17, 2011; 5 performances, RMA

Choreography by Lynne Taylor-Corbett and Robert Weiss
Music by Poulenc, Debussy and Chausson

Lilyan Vigo, Gabor Kapin and Company in Carolina Ballet's A Midsummer Night's Dream; Choreography by George Balanchine (c) The George Balanchine Trust; Photo by Russ Howe

Lilyan Vigo, Gabor Kapin and Company in Carolina Ballet's A Midsummer Night's Dream; Choreography by George Balanchine (c) The George Balanchine Trust; Photo by Russ Howe

A Midsummer Night’s Dream – May 19-22, 2011 – 5 performances, RMA

    Choreography by George Balanchine; Music by Felix Mendelssohn
    With new ballet by principal dancer Attila Bongar

    During Carolina Ballet’s first twelve seasons, artistic director Robert Weiss has made a name for the company by presenting more than 72 new works – more than any other ballet company in the country during that same time period with the exception of New York City Ballet. This tradition continues during the 2010-2011 season with five world premieres by Weiss, principal guest choreographer Lynne Taylor-Corbett, and principal dancers Timour Bourtasenkov and Attila Bongar. A sixth ballet will be the Raleigh premiere of the much loved fairy tale, Pinocchio, by Bruce Wells, formerly of Boston Ballet and currently with Pacific Northwest Ballet.

    One of the highlights of the fall season is Lynne Taylor-Corbett’s new ballet of Bram Stoker’s gothic romantic thriller, Dracula, accompanied by specially commissioned music by J. Mark Scearce. Carolina Ballet has collaborated with Scearce (director of the music department at NC State University) on several other occasions – The Kreutzer Sonata, Endymion’s Sleep and most recently Song of the Dead on this season’s Picasso program, of which the News & Observer said Scearce’s music “ranges arrestingly from turbulent to wistful to hymn-like.” And Scearce composed the music for Guernica by Attila Bongar also on the Picasso program. Dracula will be accompanied by live music conducted by Alfred E. Sturgis, Carolina Ballet music director and director of the North Carolina Master Chorale.

    Ms. Taylor-Corbett, a two-time Tony Award nominee has created such works on the company as Carmina Burana, Carolina Jamboree with the Red Clay Red Ramblers, Cabaret with Andrea Marcovicci, and Code of Silence, among others. Following the opening of Carmina Burana in 2001, the Herald Sun wrote “to witness such a mind at work is a tremendous thing; that it is here, available and accessible to all is nothing short of miraculous.” Carolina Ballet will also present Taylor-Corbett’s The Ugly Duckling, and Picnic on the Grass from Monet Impressions during the second half of the season.

    Timour Bourtasenkov and Attila Bongar are both two-time recipients of New York Choreographic Institute Fellowship Grants. They have received critical acclaim for their ballets choreographed on Carolina Ballet over the past several years. Most recently Bongar choreographed Gurenica on the Picasso evening, and the “Exotic Birds” section of last season’s Beauty and the Beast which the New & Observer called “the most arresting dancing.” Bourtasenkov’s most recent choreography for Carolina Ballet was Dances for Piano and Violin of which the News & Observer said he showed an “inventive flair as a choreographer.” He also choreographed several sections of Carolina Ballet’s successful Messiah when it premiered in 1998 – among other ballets over the past twelve years.

    The remainder of the season is made up of several of the most popular ballets in the company’s repertory – Robert Weiss’ Firebird (“takes our breath away….aptly describes the dynamic combination of subtlety, athleticism and color that imbues this timeless classic.” Winston Salem Journal); and Carmen (“there have been flamenco Carmens and tango Carmens, but Robert Weiss’ may be the definitive Carmen.” Winston-Salem Journal); and Monet Impressions with Taylor-Corbett’s Picnic on the Grass and Weiss’ Gardens of Giverny. The season closes with George Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream to the music of Felix Mendelssohn. According to Robert Weiss “Balanchine always said that his inspiration for this ballet came more from the beautiful score than the Shakespeare play, however the choreography plays great homage to the play, clearly telling the story of the star-crossed lovers and magic spells.” The News & Observer said in 2004 “even a small child could understand which pairs are in love, which are bickering, and which have been turned upside-down by the mischievous Puck’s spell.”

    Information about becoming a subscriber, or creating a subscription that best suits one’s schedule, is available by calling the Carolina Ballet box office at 919 719-0900 or online at www.carolinaballet.com. There are many benefits to being a subscriber including the opportunity to purchase tickets for Nutcracker before they go on sale to the public. For the upcoming season there will be 12 performances of Nutcracker December 17-26, 2010 at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium.

    Carolina Ballet, Inc. has taken its place among America’s premier arts organizations. Under the innovative direction of artistic director Robert Weiss, a talented company, fiscally responsible management and community support, Carolina Ballet exposes audiences to traditional ballet by legendary masters and new works of contemporary choreographers. This twelfth season represents the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit and ever-increasing quality of life experienced here in North Carolina.

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