Sunday, May 15, 2011

Christopher Sqaured and ELO

We have a rep that has snuck up on us quicker than any of us could say SLOW DOWN!
We tech in 6 days and one of the pieces was just completed a few days ago!!!!!
The rep is:
  • Christopher Bruce's American Premiere of "Grinning in your Face"
  • Jorma Elo's World Premiere of "One/End/One"
  • Christopher Wheeldon's Houston Ballet premiere of "Rush"
Each ballet is wildly different.
My goal was to not watch Jorma's new piece until it was finished... so I can't wait to see what he has created for our company. I've seen the costumes and it is absolutely intriguing to see such a classical tutu in a very very contemporary ballet. I hear that's kind of his thing, mixing old world style with new world movement. Holly Hynes designed the costumes and the music is to Mozart's Violin Concerto No. 4.
Costume Design By Holly Hynes
Woman's corset. Photo by Valerie Reeves of Art Institute of Houston North

Christopher Wheeldon will be here on Tuesday with Joanna Burmann (who set the ballet on us about a month ago) to tidy up before our premiere. I love working with Christopher and Joanna. They each have such positive personalities that make you want to work and push yourself for the ballet. Everything in this ballet is about clarity and precision. It makes in fun and challenging to see how clean and precise you can be. Christopher's choreography is always extremely musical without being mechanical, everything flows. The music is to Bohuslav Martinu's
Sinfonietta La Jolla for chamber orchestra and piano

Finally Christopher Bruce's "Grinning in Your Face".
This is my very first "Bruce" ballet. I can't tell you how ecstatic I am to be doing this ballet. He came and set the ballet on us in October and we had to put it to rest until about a month ago. I have been waiting anxiously ALL year to get back to rehearsing this ballet. The music is to a Martin Simpson soundtrack called "Grinning in Your Face". It is a compilation of different folk songs and a few covers by artists such as Cat Stevens and Bob Dylan. The ballet's setting is in the 1930's and 40's . He explained it as the "Dust Bowl" era. The movement is organic and fluid with moments of labor, humor, love and war. Our costumes are amazing rayon dresses each a different color and style. There are 5 girls in the piece. Each named after the original dancers at Rambert Dance Company. I dance the role of Angela, a kind of sassy character who picks up the "Roving Gambler" even if it is against her mother's will.... There is also a little girl character who does a great solo to "Birdie" with her cardigan as her wings. There is a the "teenage lover" who has a wonderful pas de duex to a instrumental version of Cat Steven's "First Cut" and a cheating pas de duex between "Samantha" and the cheating husband character. The second movement is to the "Grinning in Your Face" folk song. It has an amazing pas de deux with the Miranda and her cheating husband. It is one of the most brilliant pas de duex's. The perfect display of struggle in a relationship. The partnership weaves in and out of the four girls gossiping behind them. Here is a link to the original song.
Grinning in Your Face

Next week is a BIG week. We have three world renowned choreographers present in our brand new building, preparing three premiere's.. one a world premiere, one an American premiere, and on a Houston Ballet premiere. What a great time to be apart of this company.

I can't WAIT for everyone to see this rep.
It is going to be AMAZING.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Tutu, Hush, and The Core at Miller

Uhhhh, Hello?
Are you alive?


To my 21 followers:
I apologize for never blogging.
I know you are just waiting eagerly by your computers, ipads, ipods , smart phones, iphones, dingleberries, doodleberries, marionberries, and every other new piece of technology that you can get on to view the next post by the crafterina. If this is the case I suggest you stop and check back once every 17 years for a new blog post....
I take that back.

NOW I present to you.

The Miller Outdoor Theater

For me one of the most enjoyable performances we do each season. There is always a great and enthusiastic crowd for these shows. I mean I don't know how you couldn't be excited. Ballet? A picnic? The outdoors? A hill to roll down? Sounds like the ULTIMATE!

Well this year our rep was Stanton Welch's "Tutu" and "The Core" and Christopher Bruce's "Hush". All three incredibly different pieces and each amazing in their own right. We performed "Tutu" earlier this season at the Wortham and I believe I wrote quite an extensive blog on it. It was fun to bring it back and made it easier to throw together with all the other things we are working on right now. I was happy to see "The Core" come back for an outdoor theater. I knew the audience at Miller would really like the "Broadway" sense of the ballet and the Gershwin music is always nice to hear. Also I got to perform "Jane", which is always fun!

"The Core" waiting room

Christopher Bruce's "Hush" is one of my favorite ballet's of ALL TIME. It has the most amazing soundtrack by Yo-Yo Ma with vocals by Bobby McFerrin. The music is infectious. You can't help but hum and sing along. The movement is AMAZING. And maybe one of the most special things about this ballet is the fact Christopher Bruce created this ballet for the Houston Ballet. It is like our own little gem. Every single time I see this ballet it gets better and better. One of the highlights for me is the Mother's solo. It is perfect. The way it flows and tells a story, the constant struggle of being a mother and caring for children, and managing the every day chores. It is absolutely flawless, it gives me chills every single time.

Jess in the Mother solo in "Hush"

Here is a clip of the little girls solo: