Back from vacation and catching up on ballet news…
ABT Heads West For Nutcracker in 2015
ABT announced that it will perform Alexei Ratmansky’s Nutcracker beginning in December 2015 at Segerstrom Center in Costa Mesa, California. The company will give 14 performances from December 10-20, 2015 and will return annually. The company has appeared at the Center 23 times, beginning in 1987.
2014 will bring to an end to ABT’s Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) Nutcracker run that began in 2010. As I wrote in December, when ABT announced the new Ratmansky Nutcracker in 2009, the plan was to increase the run to four weeks. ABT trumpeted the economic virtues of the Nutcracker as it is the financial foundation of many ballet companies and it provides an introduction to ballet for many children. However, the 2013 run contained 12 performances over 8 days, similar to 2012, down from 18 performances over 13 days in 2011. Despite attractive ticket prices and positive reviews, ABT’s plan never materialized.
Since the ABT Nutcracker was a new product in New York relative to more established Nutcrackers, more advertising could have helped. I did not seen much print and TV ads for the ABT Nutcracker, unlike the New York City Ballet version. This is a shame because the ABT version is very good and reasonably priced.
Sorry to see the Nutcracker move West. New York’s loss is California’s gain.
ABT Spring Season Tickets on Sale Sunday
Tickets for ABT’s spring season at the Met go on sale Sunday. The season runs from May 12 to July 5 and features Don Quixote, La Bayadère, Manon, Cinderella, Giselle, Swan Lake, Coppélia, and two mixed rep bills.
Guest artists include English National Ballet Principal Dancer Alina Cojocaru, Maria Kochetkova, Principal Dancer with San Francisco Ballet, Denis Matvienko, a guest artist with the Mariinsky Ballet and Vadim Muntagirov, Principal Dancer with The Royal Ballet. Olga Smirnova, a leading soloist with Bolshoi Ballet and Viktoria Tereshkina, Principal Dancer with the Mariinsky Ballet, will make their American Ballet Theatre debuts as Guest Artists this season. Vladimir Shklyarov, a Principal Dancer with the Mariinsky Ballet, and Amy Watson, a Principal Dancer with The Royal Danish Ballet, will perform as Exchange Artists as part of an exchange program with their respective companies, according to an ABT press release.
Several soloists will get top billing in Coppélia; Sascha Radetsky will perform on July 3, Yuriko Kajiya and Joseph Gorak on July 5, and Jared Matthews on July 5.