published Thursday, May 9th, 2013

Chattanooga Ballet offers 'Swan Lake'

IF YOU GO

What: Chattanooga Ballet performances

What: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, May 10-11

What: UTC Fine Arts Center, 752 Vine St.

What: $15 adults, $13 seniors, students and children

What: 423-425-4269

  • photo
    After nine years as a principal dancer, Amanda Walker Gray will make her final appearance with Chattanooga Ballet as Odette, the Queen of the Swans, in “Swan Lake.”
    Photo by Contributed Photo /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

PRINCIPAL DANCERS

• Amanda Walker Gray: Odette, the Queen of the Swans. A 2006 recipient of the Tennessee Arts Commission fellowship for artistic excellence in dance performance, she has spent the last nine years as a principal dancer with Chattanooga Ballet.

• Eduard Forehand: Prince Siegfried. A dancer from the Louisville Ballet, he may be remembered for his portrayal of Albrecht in Chattanooga Ballet's production of "Giselle."

• Dillon Davis: Von Rotbart. A graduate of the Center for Creative Arts, he began training at Chattanooga Ballet at age 12. His professional career began at Alabama Ballet, and he is currently a soloist at Dance Theatre of Tennessee in Nashville.

• Professional company members Kirsten Hyde, Era Terry, Hope Smisson and Laura Schlatter will be dancing the roles of the Grande Signets.

Chattanooga Ballet will present a repertoire standard, the second act of "Swan Lake," as well as three new works in two performances this weekend at the UTC Fine Arts Center.

Musically and as a dance drama, "Swan Lake" is the most popular of all classical ballets, says Chattanooga Ballet general director Bob Willie. The famous second act is danced by almost every ballet company in the world.

"Swan Lake" was first presented at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow in 1877 with music by Tchaikovsky and choreography by Julius Reisinger. That production was superseded by a new choreographic version by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov at the Maryinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg in February 1894. Their version has been passed down from generation to generation.

The new works are by Mary Labianca and Jennia Shanley and Laura Schlatter.

Labianca is the director of dance education at the Southeast Center for Education in the Arts at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Her modern work, "On the Sidelines," to be performed by the company, is danced to music by Nicholas Derridont and Balmorhea.

Shanley, originally of Chattanooga, is a dance educator, choreographer and performer based in Orlando, Fla., where she is on the faculty at the Center for Contemporary Dance. She performs with Mary Love Dance Project and owns Ascension Dance, which brings dance to schools in Orlando. Her choreographic work, "Restless Revolution," was first performed by Chattanooga Ballet at the Tennessee Association of Dance Festival gala concert last fall. This contemporary work is accompanied by music by Peter Samples and The Glitch Mob.

Schlatter's work, called "Mucha Muchacha," is set to music by Juan Garcia Esquivel. She is a first-year professional company member at Chattanooga Ballet.

Through its choreographic development program, Chattanooga Ballet has commissioned and produced more than 45 new works by regional choreographers over the past 20 years.

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