Saturday, October 23, 2010

Classical Materpieces & Contemporary Gems

A group of young ballerinas and danseurs moved across an unadorned stage, taking the opening steps of ballet legend Marius Petipa's classic pas de dix, Raymonda. They were soon joined by the dancers of Michigan's only professional ballet company, stunning white costumes highlighting each movement against the dark background. Tutus bounced, sequins sparkled, and each pliƩ, arabesque, and spin stole you deeper into a magical land where a point of the foot spoke a thousand words. This is ballet.

I am by no means a ballet expert - my own would-be ballet career was ended at six after an incident involving a red and white sequined lollipop  (I'll spare you) - but I am a lover of the sheer athleticism, poise and aesthetics of this genre and find myself drawn to return to its hold, time and time again.

The three part program marking the Grand Rapids Ballet Company's opening performance was an exquisite mix of classic and contemporary dance, each piece showcasing the professionals' superb talent. Raymonda left me breathless. Guest artist Kyohei Giovanni Yoshida's Compulsive made me shine. Sense of Doubt with Lindsi Dec and Karel Cruz was moving. Le Corsaire took my jaw to the floor. Finally, Who Cares?, George Balanchine's ode to his friend George Gershwin's golden Hollywood compositions, sent me into the night merry, smiling, and leaping about the DeVos Performance Hall in my best ballerina impression.

The 2011 Season is set with artistry and beauty around each bend. If you have a chance to see any of these outstanding works, please, please do.

2011 Grand Rapids Ballet Company Calendar
Who Cares?
October 22 - 24
DeVos Performance Hall

The Nutcracker
December 3 - 5 & 10 - 12
DeVos Performance Hall

Nine Sinatra Songs
January 28 - 30 & February 4 - 6
Peter Martin Wege Theatre

Romeo & Juliet
May 13 - 15 & 20 - 22
Peter Martin Wege Theatre

A perfectly poised high five,



Anonymous said...

What a fabulous show! Just loved the guest artists in the chair piece and the lovely duet and the Le Corsair was the best I have ever seen anywhere. Kudos to the dancers of the GRBC for their heart and soul in the Gershwin piece. We are so proud to have this company here in Grand Rapids.

West Michigan Tourist Association said...

Anonymous, I couldn't agree with you more! Are you as jazzed about the upcoming season as I am? I'm particularity looking forward to Romeo & Juliet in May.