BalletX Presents World Premieres by Darrell Grand Moultrie and Trey McIntyre, Plus Matthew Neenan’s ‘Increasing’
BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet company, presents its Spring Series 2018 at The Wilma Theater, March 7-18. The series features world premieres by Darrell Grand Moultrie and Trey McIntyre, as well as the return of Increasing (2014) by Matthew Neenan, BalletX co-founder. The program boasts a diverse set of music, ranging from Classical to Motown and Latin selections.
“I am excited for Darrell and Trey to return to Philadelphia to create new works on BalletX, and for the opportunity to revive Matt’s Increasing, which we all remember so fondly,” says Christine Cox, BalletX Artistic & Executive Director. “These are three of the finest choreographers in the country, and each have a unique talent for challenging dancers and transporting audiences.”
For his return to BalletX, Darrell Grand Moultrie offers a world premiere that celebrates the music and culture of his native Spanish Harlem. Turning to a treasured neighborhood resource early in the creative process, he found additional inspiration for his piece in Raices Latin Music Museum – a comprehensive collection of rare instruments, sheet music, recordings, and photographs documenting the evolution of Latin, Afro-Caribbean music in New York City. Over the course of his career, Grand Moultrie has worked in multiple genres, including theater, ballet, modern, and commercial dance, and emerged as one of America’s most sought-after choreographers. He has created work for Colorado Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, and Dance Theatre of Harlem, among many others. In 2013, he choreographed for Beyoncé’s Mrs. Carter World Tour, the highest-grossing female solo tour of the year, as reported in Billboard. Most recently, Tony Award-winning director Diane Paulus tapped Grand Moultrie to choreograph the original musical Witness Uganda at American Repertory Theater. The Washington Post describes Grand Moultrie’s choreography as “exuberant and deliberate… a reminder that the human form is as powerful in stillness as it is in unbridled motion.”
Trey McIntyre has created choreography dealing with a variety of compelling subject matters, including Shakespeare, the illustrated works of Edward Gorey, Glacier National Park, and the mating rituals of the Praying Mantis, to name a few. BalletX audiences will be treated to McIntyre’s wide-ranging, adventurous scope this spring when he premieres a new work inspired by episodes of American Bandstand and Soul Train, and set to an eclectic mix of Motown and other radio hits from the 1970s. To embody the energy and fashion of the era, steeped in counterculture and revolutionary values, McIntyre will collaborate with designer Andrea Lauer, highly regarded for costuming the original Broadway production of American Idiot. Supremely prolific, McIntyre has created over 100 works on numerous prestigious companies, including Stuttgart Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and New York City Ballet. His 2016 BalletX world premiere, Big Ones, a drama played out in a showbiz coliseum to the music of the late, great Amy Winehouse, was hailed by The New York Times as “funny, touching, poignant, stirring.” Both McIntyre and Grand Moultrie’s new works will feature lighting design by Mark Stanley, Resident Lighting Director of New York City Ballet.
Spring Series 2018’s world premieres will be complemented by Matthew Neenan’s Increasing – a work that originally premiered on BalletX at Vail International Dance Festival’s NOW: Premieres program in 2014, with key roles performed by special guests Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild, Principal Dancers of New York City Ballet. Members of BalletX will undertake the guest positions this spring, lending their unique voices to the parts originated by Peck and Fairchild. Neenan’s Increasing is set to Franz Schubert’s Quintet in C Major, composed during the final weeks of Schubert’s life in 1828, and often ranked among his greatest accomplishments (NPR Music). Neenan has called it his favorite piece of music, naturally turning to it when he set out to make a piece that was purely musical. Unlike a conventional quintet, Schubert’s work features an extra cello instead of an extra viola. For the upcoming revival of Increasing, the Schubert score will be performed live and in its entirety by alumni from Curtis Institute of Music and Yale University. Covering its 2014 premiere, The New York Times wrote, “Mr. Neenan is one of those rare dance makers who can create a world that coexists beside important music.” Neenan is the co-founder of BalletX, and his works on the company have been performed on stages around the country, including Jacob’s Pillow, Central Park’s Summerstage, Laguna Dance Festival, Joyce Theater, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in his hometown, Boston.
The 12-performance run will also invite audiences deeper into the world of contemporary ballet through two signature BalletX X-Process events: a pre-show Conversations with the Artists on opening night and a post-show Q&A on March 8. BalletX will host Young Xers Night, a pre-show open bar and after party for young dance lovers and professionals, on March 15.
Season subscriptions to BalletX’s 2017/18 Season and single tickets to Spring Series 2018 are available online at http://www.balletx.org/, by phone at 215-546-7824, and in person at The Wilma Theater Box Office, 265 S. Broad Street.
BalletX Spring Series
Wednesday March 7th 8:00PM – Pre-Show Q&A with Artistic Collaborators, 7:00PM
Thursday March 8th 8:00PM – Post-Show Q&A with choreographers
Friday March 9th 8:00PM
Saturday March 10th 2:00PM
Saturday March 10th 8:00PM
Sunday March 11th 2:00PM
Wednesday March 14th 8:00PM
Thursday March 15th 8:00PM – Young Xers Night, 7:00PM
Friday March 16th 8:00PM
Saturday March 17th 2:00PM
Saturday March 17th 8:00PM
Sunday March 18th 2:00PM
The Wilma Theater, 265 S. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Season and single tickets to Spring Series 2018 are available online at http://www.balletx.org/, by phone at 215-546-7824, and in person at The Wilma Theater Box Office, 265 S. Broad Street.
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