Ballet Ends Season With 'Beauty and the Beast'
Carolina Ballet closes its 2008-2009 season with the premiere of artistic director Robert Weiss' "Beauty and the Beast" May 28-May 31, at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium in the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts. Performances are scheduled at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 28, Friday, May 29, and Saturday, May 30, at 8 p.m., and at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday, May 31.
During the past 11 seasons, Carolina Ballet has premiered new choreography for 11 story ballets -- including "Sleeping Beauty" "Swan Lake," "Romeo and Juliet," "Nutcracker," "Messiah" and "Carmen" -- building a reputation that led The Washington Post to say "the best full-evening story ballets of the past quarter-century are currently being choreographed in Raleigh by Robert Weiss."
For "Beauty and the Beast," Weiss commissioned a new score from Cary resident Karl Moraski, who will accompany the production on the piano. Moraski composed the original score for Carolina Ballet's "Cinderella" in 2006.
The costumes have been designed by David Heuvel, Carolina Ballet's "principal guest costume designer," who is costume production director at Ballet West in Salt Lake City. Heuvel first came to Carolina Ballet to coordinate the construction of the costumes for Carolina Ballet's Nutcracker at five costume shops in the United States and England. He has been creating designs for Carolina Ballet productions since 2002 when he designed the costumes for the premiere of Weiss' Firebird. The scenery is from Ballet Met in Columbus, Ohio, with additional scenic elements from Jeff A.R. Jones, Carolina Ballet's resident designer.
Also on the program is an additional new ballet by Robert Weiss to Anton Dvorak's "Serenade for Strings."
Weiss says that on first hearing this music over 20 years ago he thought it would make a beautiful ballet. It wasn't until recently, however, that he visualized it for his dancers. The Dvorak piece will close the program so that the young children in the audience may leave early without missing any of "Beauty and the Beast."
Tickets may be purchased by calling the Carolina Ballet box office at (919) 719-0900 or Ticketmaster at (800) 982-2787. Ticket prices range from $18-65 and there is a $10 student rush ticket (with current ID) one hour before the show. Group tickets are also available for ten or more patrons at a 20 percent discount.
In its 11th season, Carolina Ballet Inc. has taken its place among America's premier arts organizations. Under the innovative direction of artistic director Robert Weiss, a talented company, fiscally responsible management and community support, Carolina Ballet exposes audiences to traditional ballet by legendary masters and new works of contemporary choreographers. The company represents the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit and ever-increasing quality of life experienced here in North Carolina.
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