San Francisco Ballet to Premiere Work Set to Earth's Rumbles

Classic Arts News   San Francisco Ballet to Premiere Work Set to Earth's Rumbles
Next month, San Francisco Ballet will mark the 100th anniversary of the earthquake that leveled San Francisco in 1906 by premiering Ballet Mori, a new work that makes use of live seismographic data.

The massive quake, which struck on April 18, 1906, spawned a fire that destroyed much of the city. At the time, hundreds were reported dead, but the actual number of deaths was likely in the thousands.

During the performance on April 4, data about the movement of the Hayward Fault will be transmitted from a seismometer at the University of California at Berkeley to the War Memorial Opera House, where it will be transformed into music and lighting. Principal dancer Muriel Maffre will perform the dance, reacting to the music through a pre-determined dance vocabulary created by fellow principal dancer Yuri Possokhov.

Ballet Mori is a collaboration between Ken Goldberg, a UC Berkeley professor of robotics and an artist; composer Randall Packer; costume designer Benjamin Pierce, a former San Francisco Ballet principal dancer; and lighting designer Kevin Connaughton. It will only be performed once.

The April 4 program also includes Stanton Welch's Falling, George Balanchine's Rubies, and William Forsythe's Artifact Suite, getting its U.S. premiere.

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