Oregon Ballet Theatre Opens Season with New Swan Lake and a Full Orchestra

Classic Arts News   Oregon Ballet Theatre Opens Season with New Swan Lake and a Full Orchestra
The Oregon Ballet Theatre opens its new season tonight with a new version of Act III of Swan Lake, choreographed, after Marius Pepita's original, by artistic director Christopher Stowell.

The program, entitled "Movement as Metaphor," also includes George Balanchine's Concerto Barocco as well as Orpheus Portrait, choreographed by Stowell's father, Kent Stowell, who is co-artistic director with his wife, Francia Russell, of the Pacific Northwest Ballet. (The pair will retire at the end of the 2004-05 season.)

OBT's season comprises four productions, including a month-long run of Balanchine's Nutcracker, along with the company's regional and national tours. This season, Stowell's second as artistic director, features a mix of classical and modern ballet that is less overtly graphic and theatrical, according to the Portland Oregonian, than the work championed by OBT's controversial founding artistic director, James Canfield.

Highlights of the season include Charles Czarny's Concerto Grosso, an athletic work informed by rigorous competitive sports; a new work by Stowell, his second for OBT; and dances by Jerome Robbins, Paul Taylor, and Yuri Possokhov. Another significant development is the result of Stowell's efforts to bring live music to his productions: The fall program will be accompanied by a full orchestra, and live music for the rest of the season will be provided by smaller groups.

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