2017–2018 Season Overview
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October 27-29, 2017 – Benedum Center
Choreography: Ben Stevenson | Music: Franz Liszt
Over Halloween weekend, PBT brings back the deliciously spine-chilling Dracula, based on Bram Stoker’s 1897 gothic novel – the grandfather of all vampire dramas. Dissatisfied with his bevy of undead brides, Count Dracula fixates on Svetlana, a young girl on the cusp of engagement, to satiate his thirst for fresh blood. A haunting score by Franz Liszt builds suspense while scenic designer Thomas Boyd’s fastidious studies of Balkan and Romanian architecture add authenticity to the 19th-century Transylvanian setting. The dancing also has teeth, with levitation, flying and pyrotechnics that make the choreography even more climactic. At the time of its premiere, the New York Times described it as a “spectacle of an order ballet audiences seldom see today.”
Artist: Cooper Verona | Photo: Duane Rieder
December 1-27, 2017 - Benedum Center
Choreography & Staging: Terrence S. Orr | Music: Peter I. Tchaikovsky
Complete with flurrying snow, a colossal Christmas tree and magic tricks galore, this holiday spectacular features over 100 dancers, 210 costumes and Tchaikovsky’s exultant score. Since its 1892 premiere, The Nutcracker has held a special place in holiday traditions all over the world. PBT adds its own spin to the time and place with a turn-of-the-century setting incorporating Pittsburgh’s own landmarks, historical figures and personality. Each performance features a unique casting combination, giving regulars the chance to see a variety of dancers perform iconic roles like Marie, the Nephew, the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier.
Artist: William Moore | Photo: Duane Rieder
February 16-25, 2018 - Benedum Center
Swan Lake with the PBT Orchestra
Choreography: Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov | Music: Peter I. Tchaikovsky
An evil enchantment and a mysterious love story give wings to a ballet that has captured the public imagination since 1895. Together with the live PBT Orchestra, PBT returns to Swan Lake for two weekends around Valentine’s Day. Swan Lake exemplifies classical technique – from the ballet en blanc swan scenes to the Black Swan’s famous 32 fouettés. But it’s the undulating port de bras of the swans – a movement quality unique to Swan Lake – that lends its own mystique to the classical vocabulary. Set to the stirring themes of Tchaikovsky’s score, the split personalities of Odette and Odile mirror the age-old battle between good and evil.
Artist: Amanda Cochrane | Photo: Duane Rieder
March 16-25, 2018 - August Wilson Center
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre: New Works
Choreography: Mixed repertory program of world premiere works by PBT dancers
PBT has built its repertory around an eclectic mix of classics, modern masterworks and new commissions from both seasoned and emerging choreographers. In March at the August Wilson Center, Artistic Director Terrence S. Orr will hand over the program to five choreographic voices from PBT’s own company of dancers: Amanda Cochrane, Julia Erickson, Yoshiaki Nakano, William Moore and Cooper Verona. Each choreographer will create a signature work on his or her fellow artists, offering audience members a personal, insightful look at the way today’s dancers interpret their own medium.
Artist: Luca Sbrizzi | Photo: Duane Rieder
May 4-6, 2018 - Benedum Center
UPMC Presents ‘West Side Story Suite’ + ‘In the Night’ with the PBT Orchestra
West Side Story Suite
Choreography: Jerome Robbins
Music: Leonard Bernstein
In the Night
Choreography: Jerome Robbins
Music: Frédéric Chopin
PBT’s season finale celebrates the 100th birthdays of Jerome Robbins and Leonard Bernstein, whose game-changing Broadway collaboration remains as relevant today as it was in 1957. “West Side Story Suite” samples classic songs and dances from the full-length musical and film. In this work, the dancers not only dance – they’ll sing excerpts from famous songs like America and Cool. Tapping into the raw emotions that drove the full-length story, the dancers will take on the personas of Tony, Maria and the rival Jets and Sharks through choreography that earned Robbins a Tony Award. “West Side Story Suite” will share the program with another Robbins masterwork: his intimate 1940 work, “In the Night,” set to four Chopin nocturnes. With pas de deux for three very different couples, “In the Night” lifts the curtain on love at its most tender and its most tumultuous.
Artists: Jessica McCann, Alejandro Diaz & PBT Company Members | Photo: Duane Rieder
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