Tulsa Ballet presents the return of Ben Stevenson’s Dracula

TULSA, Okla., Oct. 2018, – Tulsa Ballet presents the return of the gothic ballet Dracula at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center October 25-28th.

Dracula was first created by choreographer Ben Stevenson in 1997 as a production co-commissioned by Houston Ballet and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. Tulsa Ballet has performed this production twice (most recently in 2012) to sold out audiences.  Tulsa Ballet Artistic Director Marcello Angelini says, “Dracula is successful beyond any expectations because every element of the production excels and each and every component complements the other, adding a layer of artistry and entertainment to the show.” Entertainment critics agree: Dance Magazine proclaimed the work “a Dracula to die for…a magnificent spectacle,” and The Chicago Tribune enthused, “Dracula gives new life to an old art form.”

The production has the feel of a Broadway show; with awe inspiring stunning theatrics, vampire brides who soar through the air, and an exploding chandelier, this dramatic production will have you at the edge of your seat. Angelini continues, “Ben Stevenson is the ultimate story teller of our generation. He is able to distill the essence of each story and each moment to communicate with the audience in a silent, yet very effective way.  I adore his works such as Cinderella, which we presented last year, and l really love Dracula. I am so happy to share it again with our audience!”

Tickets are in such high demand for Dracula that the company has made a limited number of additional tickets available for purchase for the Thursday, October 25th Preview Night performance. This special performance is the company’s final dress rehearsal. Patrons purchasing tickets to Preview Night will have the opportunity to arrive one hour prior to curtain to watch the dancers finish their warm up on stage, and will have access to a private cash bar on the Promenade level of the theater.

Performances of Dracula will be accompanied live by Tulsa Symphony Orchestra. The ballet is set to the music of Franz Liszt, in an arrangement by John Lanchberry. Tickets range from $25 – $120. For tickets call (918) 749–6006 or visit www.tulsaballet.org.

 

Tulsa Ballet’s Dracula

QUICK FACTS

Choreography:                         Ben Stevenson

Music:                                       Franz Liszt arranged by John Lanchbery

Peter Stafford Wilson, Principal Conductor

Tulsa Symphony Orchestra

 

Performance Dates:       Thursday, October 25 at 7:00pm – PREVIEW NIGHT* (see below)

Friday, October 26 at 7:30pm

Saturday, October 27 at 7:30pm

Sunday, October 28 at 2:30pm

*PREVIEW NIGHT – A limited number of tickets are available for Preview Night. Be the first to see the show when you purchase your tickets to our special dress rehearsal. Arrive one hour early get a behind-the-scenes look as the dancers warm up before the show and enjoy a private cash bar. Please note that Preview Night is a dress rehearsal performance. There may be extra pauses in the performance and noise from the technical staff.

Ticket Information:

Call (918) 749-6006 or visit www.tulsaballet.org/dracula

 

Pre-Performance Discussion:

Enhance your experience at Dracula. Tulsa Ballet holds Pre-performance discussions in the Westby Pavilion on the Promenade level 30 minutes prior to the Friday, Saturday and Sunday performances. Discussions are led by Tulsa Ballet artistic staff and visiting artists, and topics may include the choreography, musical score, costuming, or other subjects related to the performance. Pre-performance discussions are free and all ticket holders are invited to attend.

 

For more info on our 2018/19 Season visit www.tulsaballet.org.

 

Hi-Res images and interview opportunities available:

Ryan Allen, PR & Communications Manager

918.392.5949, ryan.allen@tulsaballet.org

 

Tulsa Ballet to Tour Italy, Spain and Switzerland in 2019

TULSA, Okla. – August 2018 – Following a successful residency at The Joyce Theater in New York in the spring of 2018, Tulsa Ballet will return to the international stage in April 2019, proudly representing the arts and culture of our city and state. The 2019 tour will see the company presenting a series of performances throughout Italy, Spain and Switzerland making this the fifth international tour for Tulsa Ballet. The company made its international debut in 2002, when it performed as part of the Sintra Festival in Sintra, Portugal. In 2007, the company performed in Serbia and Croatia, and Oklahoma Governor, Brad Henry, issued a proclamation decreeing Tulsa Ballet the official “Oklahoma Cultural Ambassador.” In 2008, the company traveled to Seoul, South Korea and made its Italian premiere in 2016. Between 2009 and 2016 the company focused on US appearances, performing at The Joyce in New York and The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC.

Continue reading Tulsa Ballet to Tour Italy, Spain and Switzerland in 2019

Tulsa Ballet presents Creations in Studio K

Creations in Studio K returns with two world premiere works and a historic partnership with Philbrook Museum of Art

TULSA, Okla. – August 2018 – Tulsa Ballet launches its annual Creations in Studio K September 14-23, 2018, held at Tulsa Ballet’s intimate performance space, Studio K, on Brookside. Since its opening in 2008, Studio K has become one of Tulsa’s most unique performance venues. With only 295 seats and a full sized stage, Studio K provides the opportunity for Tulsans to witness the power and athleticism of professional dancers up close and personal. The program is dedicated to furthering innovation in dance by commissioning new works from renowned choreographers from across the world. Artistic Director Marcello Angelini says, “To celebrate the twelfth year for Studio K, we came up with a very special program that includes groundbreaking projects and exciting new works.”

One new initiative Angelini instituted for the Creations program is to empower the dancers with artistic choice. For the first time in the history of the company, the dancers were given the opportunity to choose their favorite work to perform again. The dancers voted to reprise Second to Last by Alejandro Cerrudo, which was last performed in 2016.

This year will also mark the first creation for the main company by Choreographer Jennifer Archibald. Archibald has created two works for the second company TBII, OMENS and Morning Light. Archibald is the Founder and Artistic Director of Arch Dance Company as well as Resident Choreographer for Cincinnati Ballet. She has created works for Atlanta Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Kansas City Ballet, among many others. Archibald has also worked commercially for brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, Nike and MAC Cosmetics. Angelini says, “The piece Jennifer is creating for the company is stunning. It’s primal in movement, grounded, abstract and yet full of drama. It’s energetic, powerful and has a very distinctive physicality. The dancers love working with her and I am very confident the audience will be at the edge of their seats watching her work.”

Another new initiative for Creations in Studio K centers around collaboration. Through a partnership between the Philbrook Museum of Art and Tulsa Ballet – the first of its kind – the two arts organizations will create a groundbreaking project that combines the performing and visual arts. This new work will feature the creative efforts of three great artists: composer and musician Ryan Lott, of Son Lux, has composed a brand new score for the piece; visual artist and painter Eric Sall will be creating new paintings for the work; and Tulsa Ballet Resident Choreographer Ma Cong will be creating the choreography. At every performance, Mr. Sall will be on stage with the dancers, starting with an over-sized blank canvas. The ballet begins with a dancer striking the canvas with a brush of color. With the inspiration drawn by this first stroke, Mr. Sall will be creating a brand-new painting every night. Tulsa Ballet will start the first performance of every week with five blank canvases on the stage and by the end of the weekend, all canvases will be completed, gracing the stage and interacting with the dancers.

The Creations in Studio K program will conclude with its last performance on the lawn of the Philbrook Museum of Art on September 29th. All eleven canvases will be on display. Angelini says, “I don’t think anything like this has ever been attempted. Ma Cong will have to choreograph around very large canvases moving about the stage and Eric Sall will have to start and finish a piece of art every night, in just twenty minutes. This is a very exciting and somewhat scary project for all of us!”

Creations in Studio K opens September 14 at Tulsa Ballet’s Brookside theater with performances through September 23. Tickets start at $25 and can be purchased by calling (918) 749-6006 or online at www.tulsaballet.org.

About the Choreographers

Jennifer Archibald – Choreographer

Jennifer Archibald is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Arch Dance Company and Program Director of ArchCore40 dance intensives, and is at the forefront of today’s dance generation of choreographers and dance educators. Having graduated from the Alvin Ailey School and the Maggie Flanigan Acting Conservatory where she specialized in the Meisner technique, she draws on a variety of techniques, experience and styles. She has presented Arch Dance Company nationally, having been awarded two National Performance Network grants; and has performed by special invitation at notable dance festivals country wide.

Ms. Archibald has staged off-Broadway shows and has choreographed professional theater company musicals. She has worked with chart-listed musicians and actors as a movement specialist and choreographer. She is currently on faculty at STEPS on Broadway, Broadway Dance Centre, Ailey Extension, Gibney Dance and CAP 21 America’s Musical Theatre Conservatory in New York City. She has been on faculty at the Bates Dance Festival, Broadway Theater Project and Florida Dance Festival, Complexions, Dallas Black Dance Theatre and Howard University Intensives.

Alejandro Cerrudo – Choreographer

Alejandro was born in Madrid, Spain and trained at the Real Conservatorio Profesional de Danza de Madrid. His professional career began in 1998 and includes work with Victor Ullate Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet and Nederlands Dans Theater 2. Cerrudo joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in 2005, was named Choreographic Fellow in 2008, and became the company’s first Resident Choreographer in 2009. Additional honors include an award from the Boomerang Fund for Artists (2011), and a Prince Prize for Commissioning Original Work from the Prince Charitable Trusts (2012) for his acclaimed, first evening-length work, One Thousand Pieces. Cerrudo is one of four choreographers invited by New York City Ballet principal Wendy Whelan to create and perform original duets for Restless Creature and he was recently announced the 2014 USA Donnelley Fellow by United States Artists. Second to Last is a kinetic and luscious modern work filled with five duets and features music from Phillip Glass and Arvo Pärt. Cerrudo writes the entire dance was conceived as a study, to explore “choreographic possibilities within the duet form,” and that it wasn’t his intention to explore relationships. “It was movement research, rather than trying to look for that specific feeling.” 

Ma Cong – Tulsa Ballet Resident Choreographer

Ma Cong has been widely recognized by the dance world as a passionate, bright, and inspired rising star choreographer. Critics have described his choreography as powerful and passionate.

Ma is the Resident Choreographer of Tulsa Ballet, and continues to create and stage his existing works for companies internationally. Having started his dance career at the Beijing Dance Academy, where he trained in the art of Chinese Classical dance, Ma soon discovered his love for ballet and went on to graduate with honors. Ma danced with The National Ballet of China from 1995 until 1999, prior to joining Tulsa Ballet.  During his 12-year tenure at Tulsa Ballet, he quickly rose to the rank of Principal Dancer.  Ma was one of the most celebrated and loved Artists in the history of the company.

As a choreographer, Ma launched his career with Tulsa Ballet creating Folia in 2004 and has created many original works for many other groups around the world. For last two years, Ma Cong had world premiere works presented Internationally. He created his first original full-length ballet – The Crane Whisperer for The National Ballet of China which will make Germany debut in July 2017, he also created his brand new Four Seasons for the company to premiere at The 2nd China International Ballet Season. Ma’s most recent work Flight of Fancy for Tulsa Ballet became one of audience favorite works. Ma Cong continues to be in demand worldwide for his unique talent and creations. Ma was selected to choreograph the Broadway production of Julie Taymor’s M. Butterfly, which made its premiere in October of 2017 at the Cort Theater in New York City.

Tulsa Ballet’s Creations in Studio K – Quick Facts

What:                      Creations in Studio K

A mixed repertory evening of two world premiere ballets from Jennifer Archibald and Ma Cong and the return of Alejandro Cerrudo’s Second to Last.

Where:                   Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K

1212 East 45th Place, Tulsa, OK 74105

 

Dates:                     Shows from September 14- 16 and September 20-23:

Friday, September 14 at 7:30pm

Saturday, September 15 at 2:30pm & 7:30pm

Sunday, September 16 at 2:30pm

Thursday, September 20 at 7:30pm

Friday, September 21 at 7:30pm

Saturday, September 22 at 2:30pm & 7:30pm

Sunday, September 23 at 2:30pm

Tulsa Ballet will host the second annual Brookside Block Party at the Ballet, Thursday September 20th from 5:00-7:30pm. The event is free and open to the public and will feature live music from Grazzhopper, craft beer, and food trucks Mr. Nice Guys Tacos, Okie Goodness Pizza, and Big Dipper Creamery. Local vendors will include Philbrook Museum of Art, Ida Red, Dillon Rose, and more. The Tulsa SPCA will be on site with their adoption truck. There will be children’s crafts and activities as well. Guests are invited to stay for the Creations in Studio K performance that evening at 7:30pm. Discounted tickets are available for Thursday night’s performance of Creations in Studio K.

Show-times and Ticket Information:

Call (918) 749-6006 or visit www.tulsaballet.org.

Tickets to Creations in Studio K start at $25 for select performance dates.

Hi-Res images and interview opportunities available:

Ryan Allen, PR & Communications Manager

918.392.5949, ryan.allen@tulsaballet.org

 

 

Tulsa Ballet Secures Director of Education

Tulsa Ballet Center for Dance Education Secures Director of Education

Tulsa, OKLA. – Tulsa Ballet is excited to announce the appointment of Ms. Arlene Minkhorst to the post of Director of Education. Ms. Minkhorst comes to Tulsa from her role as Director of Canada’s renowned Royal Winnipeg Ballet School. Ms. Minkhorst has taught all levels of ballet and pointe technique, repertoire classes, conducted rehearsals for performances and taught in the RWB School Professional Division Teacher Training Program.  A dedicated pedagogue in classical ballet training, Ms. Minkhorst regularly pursues opportunities to further her own knowledge of her chosen field and has traveled to observe classes, performances, and operations at other internationally recognized schools. Her experience and dedication to dance made her the perfect candidate to help guide Tulsa Ballet’s educational efforts. Minkhorst says, “I am really looking forward to working with the talented and highly motivated team I have met at Tulsa Ballet. I thrive in environments where there are groups of people who want to do things better!”

Continue reading Tulsa Ballet Secures Director of Education

Tulsa Ballet’s 2018/19 Season launches with TBII: On Your Radar Aug 24-26

 

TULSA, Okla. – Tulsa Ballet’s second company Tulsa Ballet II is compromised of some the most promising young dancers from around the world. They will have an opportunity to shine in On Your Radar August 24-26, 2018. The program will feature the exciting World Premiere of Peter and the Wolf by Tulsa Ballet Resident Choreographer Ma Cong as well as the return of Jennifer Archibald’s powerful contemporary work, OMENS. On Your Radar will take place Friday, August 24th at 7:30pm and Sunday, August 26th at 2:30pm in Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K Theater with an additional performance Saturday, August 25th at the Zarrow Performance Studio located in the Hardesty Center for Dance Education in Broken Arrow.

Continue reading Tulsa Ballet’s 2018/19 Season launches with TBII: On Your Radar Aug 24-26

Tulsa Ballet’s First Annual Open House

TULSA, Okla. – July 2018 Tulsa Ballet opens its doors Saturday, August 11th with their first annual Open House from 9:30am-3:00pm at their studio location on 45th and Peoria. The event is free and open to the public and will provide the Tulsa community with exclusive access and a up close look at their studios, theater, as well as their artistic staff and dancers. Attendees are encouraged to view open company class and rehearsals throughout the day with additional opportunities for activities and short classes for the entire family. Tulsa Ballet is proud to partner with local groups to offer additional activities such as a reading time with the Gathering Place and pet adoptions with Tulsa SPCA.

Tulsa Ballet Managing Director Scott Black says, “Each year, thousands of people experience Tulsa Ballet productions at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center, and yet most of them have never seen our facility in Brookside, that has been our home for over 25 years.  We are excited about opening our doors to the community and we hope that people will take advantage of this unique opportunity to get a sneak peak into what truly happens behind the scenes.“

Visitors are welcome to stop in and out throughout the day and are encouraged to RSVP by calling (918) 392-5905 or by filling out the online form at http://bit.ly/TBTOpenHouse18. Early registrants will be entered to win a special door prize of two tickets to Creations in Studio K, taking place September 14-23, 2018.

 

Tulsa Ballet Open House Schedule

 

9:30am – Welcome, Coffee & Pastries

10:00am – Class Observation, Production Demo, Craft Activities

10:30am – Class Observation, Tours

11:00am – Performance Video Screening, Rehearsals, Reading Time

11:30am – Rehearsals, Tours, Rhythm Class

12:00pm – TBII: Omens Performance, Rehearsals

12:30pm – Season Announcement Presentation, Rehearsals

1:00pm – TBII: Omens Performance, Rehearsals

1:30pm – Performance Video Screening, Rehearsals, Autograph Book Making

2:15-2:45pm – Dancer Meet & Greet, Placement Class for new students

 

The 2018/19 Season opens with Tulsa Ballet II performing On Your Radar August 24 at 7:30pm and August 26 at 2:30pm in Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K Theater and August 25 at the new Zarrow Performance Studio at Tulsa Ballet Hardesty Center for Dance Education in Broken Arrow. In September, the main company will premiere Creations in Studio K, featuring two exciting never-before-seen works created just for Tulsa Ballet, as well as the return of one audience favorite work. Creations in Studio K will be showcased over two weekends (Sept 14-16 and 20-23) in Tulsa Ballet’s intimate 300-seat Brookside theater Studio K.  For tickets, please call (918) 749-6006 or visit us online at www.tulsaballet.org.

 

Hi-Res images and interview opportunities available:

Ryan Allen, PR & Communications Manager

918.392.5949, ryan.allen@tulsaballet.org

 

 

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Tulsa Ballet Announces Additions and Promotions to the Company

TULSA, Okla. – After a worldwide audition tour and nearly 1500 applicants, Tulsa Ballet Artistic Director Marcello Angelini proudly presents the latest company line-up which will feature twenty-six dancers from eleven countries. Angelini says, “I am very pleased with the growth within the company during the past five years. There are a number of dancers who have grown with the organization and are consistently mastering more complex roles. It has been an inspiring journey seeing them mature and settle into a more significant role in the development of the organization.”

NEW COMPANY DANCERS

SEUNG HYUN LEE will join the company as a Soloist for the 2018/19 Season.  A graduate of the Korean National University of Arts, and with a remarkable collection of Gold Medals from some of the most prestigious competitions in the world, he joins Tulsa Ballet from Boston Ballet. Angelini says, “Seung is one of the most elegant classical ballet dancers I have seen in a long time.  He is young, has the talent to excel and the commitment to fulfill his potential.  We look forward to seeing him become part of Tulsa Ballet.”

SASHA CHERNJAVSKY joins Tulsa Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet from Kansas City Ballet.  Sasha is a graduate of Houston Ballet II. Angelini says of Sasha, “He is gifted with good technique and a fast mind.  We look forward to seeing him grow and mature with the company.”

JOHN POWERS joins Tulsa Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet from the Royal Finnish Ballet.  He studied at the Bolshoi Academy in Moscow, Russia, and continued his education on full scholarship with the San Francisco Ballet School.  Angelini says, “John is probably the tallest dancer we have ever hired, “checking in” from an altitude of about 6’8”.  He is a good classical ballet dancer with a positive attitude, eager to better himself and to come back to his native USA.”

Tulsa Ballet is proud to welcome three Tulsa Ballet II dancers into the main company. Of the TBII program, Angelini says, “Every year TBII recruits some of the most talented young dancers around the world and provides them with the tools to bridge the gap between the academic studies of ballet and the professional career. We’re happy to welcome these young dancers into the main company.” SIMONE ACRI, WILLIAM BECKHAM and NAO OTA will join the company as Apprentices. Simone and Ota, members of TBII for two years, performed roles with both the second and main companies, and were audience favorites.  Angelini says, “Watching them dance with the main company during Signature Series, and seeing how well they fit in, was a joy.  William joined TBII last year and quickly showed his value to the organization.  Every time he danced with the main company he made a case for belonging there.”

COMPANY DANCER PROMOTIONS

JENNIFER GRACE has been promoted to Soloist.  Jennifer will start her sixth season with the company; during her tenure, she has been featured in many works both classical and contemporary.  She joined TBII in 2013 and moved very quickly to graduate into the main company, where she continued to transform talent into accomplishment.  She was promoted to Demi-Soloist two years ago and continued to impress with her command of the stage in both classical and contemporary roles.  Angelini says, “Jennifer more than deserves the new status and a position of higher responsibility within the organization.”

JOSHUA STAYTON has been promoted to Soloist. This season will be his 9th with Tulsa Ballet.  Joshua has been a pillar of the company throughout his tenure, dancing featured roles from Age of Innocence (choreographed by Edwaard Liang), to the lead role of Charles in The Nutcracker, to the title role in Don Quixote, to featured parts in works by well-known choreographers like Alejandro Cerrudo and Ma Cong.  Angelini says, “He is another one that we have seen grow and mature from his first year with the company, just out of Houston Ballet II, to his interpretation of Death in The Green Table.  We are happy to see him take on a more instrumental role in the company.”

JAIMI CULLEN has been promoted to Demi-Soloist. Another veteran of Tulsa Ballet, this will be Jaimi’s seventh season with the company.  Jaimi is also a graduate of the TBII program. Angelini says, “This season she just came into her own, starting with the Creations in Studio K program in which she was featured in all three works.  Jaimi followed that with great performances throughout the year, from Strictly Gershwin to Rassemblement.  Your eye is drawn to her when she is on stage.”

MAINE KAWASHIMA has been promoted to Demi-Soloist. She will start her fifth season with the company.  Angelini says, “Maine has always been a dancer of unusual power and attack, her dancing is sharp as a sword and her technique is unequaled in precision and decisiveness.  She has consistently danced featured roles throughout her tenure with the company, growing with each experience and fine-tuning her instrument.  She has carved a very definite place for herself in the company, on stage with her natural charisma and off stage with her positive attitude and work ethic.”

MINORI SAKITA is another graduate of Tulsa Ballet’s TBII program and has been promoted to Demi-Soloist.  Angelini says, “Minori will start her fifth year with the organization and has been a delight to watch on stage and work with in the studio.  She has a unique ability to connect with an audience, a level of artistry rarely found in such young dancer.  She speaks to the audience with every movement and gesture.  Additionally, she is committed to her art form and to the organization, always going above and beyond the call of duty.  It’s a pleasure welcoming her back for another great season.”

REGINA MONTGOMERY, also a graduate of TBII, has been promoted to Demi-Soloist. This will be her sixth season with the company. Angelini says, “Regina is gifted with strong technique and enough power to light up the stage.  She has made the most out of every opportunity to dance featured roles, maturing with each one of them.  She is a great asset for the organization, powerful and committed on stage while helping in many other roles off the stage. A true example of the type of commitment that exudes success in whatever she pledges to do.”

 

The 2018/19 Season opens with Tulsa Ballet II performing On Your Radar August 24 at 7:30pm and August 26 at 2:30pm in Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K Theater and August 25 at the new Zarrow Performance Studio at Tulsa Ballet Hardesty Center for Dance Education in Broken Arrow. In September, the main company will premiere Creations in Studio K, featuring two exciting never-before-seen works created just for Tulsa Ballet, as well as the return of one audience favorite work. Creations in Studio K will be showcased over two weekends (Sept 14-16 and 20-23) in Tulsa Ballet’s intimate 300-seat Brookside theater Studio K.  For tickets, please call (918) 749-6006 or visit us online at www.tulsaballet.org.

 

Hi-Res images and interview opportunities available:

Ryan Allen, PR & Communications Manager

918.392.5949, ryan.allen@tulsaballet.org

 

 

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Tulsa Ballet II presents Emerging Choreographers Showcase April 13-15

  

The Emerging Choreographers Showcase will feature three exciting World Premiere works inspired by the TBII dancers and created by up and coming choreographers  

TULSA, Okla. – March 2018 – Tulsa Ballet II, the second company of Tulsa Ballet, is comprised of some of the most promising young dancers from around the globe, hired upon graduation from the top academies of the world and groomed to become members of Tulsa Ballet’s main company. This group has gathered not only artistic momentum, as 11 of the main company members are TBII graduates, but also its own faithful audience. Their energy and eagerness to impress whoever is watching them exudes an infectious vitality and passion. Audiences will have the opportunity to see them in three new dance works, created on these rising stars this coming April 13-15. The Friday and Sunday shows will be held in Tulsa Ballet’s intimate Studio K Theater, and the Saturday show in the Zarrow Performance Studio at the Hardesty Center for Dance Education in Broken Arrow.

This is the fourth year TBII will present the Emerging Choreographers Showcase, which is designed to provide a wonderful opportunity for both young choreographers and dancers to be part of a unique creative process. This latest collaboration will feature three brand new contemporary works: Joshua A. Stayton’s As Told by Kristin, Daniel van de Laar’s Generation Y (both dancers in Tulsa Ballet’s main company), and Sur le Fil (By a Hair’s Breadth), by guest choreographer Penny Saunders.

TBII has been an integral program in the mission of Tulsa Ballet for over ten years. The Emerging Choreographers Showcase triple-bill program is one of two annual performances that provide the young ensemble with the opportunity to have new works created on them, and their audience with the opportunity to see young rising stars both in the field of performing and choreography. Tulsa Ballet Artistic Director Marcello Angelini says, “The Emerging Choreographers Showcase is one of the many initiatives that make Tulsa Ballet the great organization we are proud to be, and one with a mission of serving our community in many different ways.  It allows young voices to craft the necessary skills to transform creativity into dance, and provides a stage for choreographers already established in their professional career with a venue to showcase their work. The culmination of this creative process comes as the proverbial curtains opens on their last program of the year, a time when both the dancers and the choreographers get the opportunity to share their artistry with you, their audience. ”

“Overall,” Angelini continues, “Emerging Choreographers Showcase is fulfilling its role within the spectrum of offerings of Tulsa Ballet. As a dancer, you begin your training in our Center for Dance Education when you are 3 years old, upon graduation you can be invited to join TBII, and upon graduating from the second company you are among the first in the audition process to be considered for a contract with Tulsa Ballet’s main company. Once in the main company you have opportunities to share your artistry both as a dancer and as a choreographer, setting the stage for a career after performing.  Tulsa Ballet aims to empower dancers at every stage of their career and provide innovation within the dance industry.”

 

About the Choreographers

Penny Saunders – Penny Saunders, originally from West Palm Beach, Florida, graduated from the Harid Conservatory in 1995, and began her professional career with The American Repertory Ballet under the direction of Septime Webre. She went on to dance with Ballet Arizona, MOMIX Dance Theater, Cedar Lake Ensemble and in 2004 she joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. In 2011, Saunders won the International Commissioning Project, which launched her choreographic career, creating pieces for Hubbard Streets’ main and second company, Whim W’Him, SFDanceworks, Neos Dance Theater, Owen Cox Dance Group, and The Nexus Project. Saunders is honored to be the choreographer in residence at The Grand Rapids Ballet, receiving support from The New York City Ballet Choreographic Commissions Initiative, and to be the recipient of the 2016 Princess Grace Choreographic Fellowship. In the 2017-2018 season, Saunders is excited to be collaborating with The Cincinnati Ballet, BalletX, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, The Royal New Zealand Ballet, SFDanceworks, Tulsa Ballet II, as well as making her first full length for The Grand Rapids Ballet. Tulsa Ballet Artistic Director Marcello Angelini says, “Penny is one to watch.  She has done plenty of works for major American dance institutions to more edgy companies…She is definitely one that we could see working with the main company.”

Joshua A. Stayton, Tulsa Ballet Demi-Soloist – Originally from Ohio, Joshua began his training at the Performing Arts school in Cincinnati. He then continued with the Orlando Ballet School (Peter Stark) and Houston Ballet II (Claudio Muñoz). Joshua has been a Demi-Soloist with both Tulsa Ballet and Sarasota Ballet. Some of his repertoire includes leading roles in Concerto (MacMillian), Mirror Walkers (Sir Wright), Age of Innocence (Liang), Bolero (Fonte), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Wheeldon), One/end/One (Elo), The Nutcracker (Angelini), The Sleeping Beauty (Angelini), Romeo & Juliet (Liang), Extremely Close (Cerrudo), and more. Joshua has performed internationally in Budapest and previously at the Helsinki IBC. He has also had the opportunity to choreograph for Tulsa Ballet’s second company and for Helsinki IBC in 2016. Angelini says, “Josh is a talented storyteller, one that uses the steps as a mean to an end.  His works are very approachable and connect well with the audience.  His new work, As Told by Kristin shows his development as a dance maker and as a story teller.”

Daniel van de Laar, Tulsa Ballet Corps de Ballet – Daniel studied for ten years at The Royal Conservatory in The Hague, The Netherlands. He danced with Nederlands Dans Theater 2 before joining Scapino Ballet in Rotterdam. With these two companies he had the opportunity to work with well-known choreographers such as Kylián, Lightfoot & León, Pite, Goecke, and others. He is excited to take the next step in his dance career by dancing in the USA with Tulsa Ballet! This is his second season with the Company. Angelini says of Daniel, “Daniel’s expressiveness is rooted in physicality.  We loved seeing him in Helen Picket’s Meoal, a role for which he was cheered and applauded by the New York audiences as well.  His approach to choreography is more European, his work more about energy and adrenaline with the storylines embedded in the movement value of the choreography.”

About TBII

The 2017/18 Season will mark the fourth year Tulsa Ballet II performs a stand-alone mini-season, separate from the main company. Tulsa Ballet II was founded in 2005 as a paid program designed to provide a bridge between the student phase of an aspiring classical ballet dancer and the professional career.  Through an international audition search, the most talented and committed young men and women are invited to Tulsa to refine their artistic and technical skills by working on their own and alongside the professional company.  This is accomplished through performances of repertoire ranging from pure classical ballets to the cutting edge of contemporary works.  Tulsa Ballet II provides new dancers for the main company each year, and has promoted more than a dozen dancers since 2010. Tulsa Ballet II offers its members multiple additional performance opportunities throughout the year, including their own mini-season with two triple-bill shows, education outreach performances (Backstage at the Ballet) which includes a partnership with Any Given Child-Tulsa, as well as providing support to Tulsa Ballet’s Main Company performances at the discretion of the Artistic Director Marcello Angelini. Of the TBII program he says, “Our goal from the very beginning was to create a program that would afford young, talented dancers the tools to bridge the gap between the academic studies of ballet and the expectations of a professional career. As it usually happens here at Tulsa Ballet, a small experiment has become a large, exciting and largely promising project. What was then a small experiment, TBII is now one of the most stimulating undertakings of our organization.”

 

TULSA BALLET II Emerging Choreographers Showcase

QUICK FACTS

Tickets for Emerging Choreographers Showcase start at just $25. For tickets call (918) 749-6006 or visit www.tulsaballet.org.

WHAT:

Emerging Choreographers Showcase, a triple bill ballet featuring new works:

 

As Told by Kristin by Joshua A. Stayton

 

                                   Generation Y by Daniel van de Laar

 

                                   Sur le Fil (By a Hair’s Breadth) by Penny Saunders

 

WHEN & WHERE:                  

7:00 p.m. Friday, April 13, 2018 at Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K Theater, 1212 E. 45th in Brookside Tulsa.

 

7:00 p.m. Saturday, April 14, 2018 at the Zarrow Performance Studio, 1901 W. New Orleans St in     Broken Arrow.

 

3:00 p.m. Sunday, April 15, 2018 at Tulsa Ballet’s Studio K Theater, 1212 E. 45th in Brookside Tulsa.

 

Visit www.tulsaballet.org for more information about upcoming performances. Tickets start at $25.

 

Hi-Res images and interview opportunities available:

Ryan Allen, PR & Communications Manager

918.392.5949, ryan.allen@tulsaballet.org

  

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