Cincinnati Ballet Presents Director’s Cut: Musical Masters

A dynamic evening featuring two iconic ballet choreographers and an innovative new voice, all paired with musical masterpieces

Cincinnati Ballet continues its season with a triple bill highlighting dynamic choreographers paired with musical masterpieces performed with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, March 15-18 at Aronoff Center for the Arts.

The program has been hand-selected by Artistic Director, Victoria Morgan, and showcases the symbiotic and critically-important relationship between dance and music.

“This is Cincinnati Ballet’s first March Series to be performed with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra.  We are honored to present pieces that were created by both iconic and newly-honed choreographers, that are partnered with an intentional focus on significant orchestral works,” said Victoria Morgan, Artistic Director.

The centerpiece of the program is Jerome Robbins’s Fancy Free, with music by Leonard Bernstein. Fancy Free was the first ballet on which the two collaborated, and it later served as the inspiration for the Broadway show and classic film, On the Town. Fancy Free serves as Cincinnati Ballet’s centennial celebration of “Bernstein at 100,” a worldwide observation of his 100th birthday as well as the global celebration of Robbins’s 100th birthday, “The Jerome Robbins Centennial.”

The program includes George Balanchine’s legendary ballet Rubies, danced to the music of Igor Stravinsky, and the Cincinnati premiere of Garett Smith’s Façades, featuring selections by Antonio Vivaldi, George F. Handel, and Philip Glass.

Originally choreographed in 1944, Fancy Free is the first piece choreographed by Robbins, and it marked the start of the longtime partnership between Robbins and Bernstein. This playful and comical ballet follows the antics of three sailors on a brief shore leave during World War II, and is the first Robbins’ production to be performed by Cincinnati Ballet. Later the same antics were recreated by Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly in the movie On The Town.

Rubies is the second of three works that are contained in George Balanchine’s full-length ballet, Jewels.  Set to the jazz-influenced music of Igor Stravinsky, Rubies, as the name implies is fiery red and is Jewels most energetic and exuberant piece, requiring speed and  technical mastery of its dancers.

The third piece on this program is the Cincinnati premiere of Smith’s Façades, a ballet that takes an innovative look at self-awareness through a Baroque eye.  A true crowd-pleaser when it first premiered at Ballet West, the action is set in front of – and behind – an ornate gilded mirror, providing for the exploration of reality and its reflections or distortions.  The score for this mesmerizing work is a compilation of music by Phillip Glass and a number of Baroque composers.

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