American Repertory Ballet will return to Raritan Valley Community College on March 23 at 8:00pm to present In Full Bloom, an evening of world premieres, Stravinsky, Vivaldi, and more. The program will feature Artistic Director Douglas Martin's brand new Rite of Spring, set to Stravinsky's score, ARB Resident Choreographer Mary Barton's vibrant Five Men and a Concerto, and a new athletic and contemporary work by Patrick Corbin.
"My involvement with Rite of Spring goes back about twenty-five years when I first performed the ballet as an original cast member of the Joffrey's Nijinsky reconstruction," Martin explains. The Joffrey Ballet performed the ballet in 1987 for the first time since it was permiered in 1913 by The Ballet Russes. "Having learned and performed that version dozens of times I feel that the ballet and the music is a part of me. I feel driven by the myriad sounds, working to meld the driving beat with the transient melodies." Martin's Rite of Spring maintains the original ballet's libretto, which is at once a celebratory ode to the advent of spring and a statement on the theme of ritualistic behavior and sacrifice, and puts it in a modern, 20th century office setting.
Mary Barton's Five Men and a Concerto was choreographed in 2012 for the men of ARB. Set to Vivaldi's "Concerto for Oboe", the choreography utilizes classical lines to create a strong movement that accentuates these male dancers' strengths. "I was looking to create a ballet that showed off the company men classically and lyrically. I found the strength of the concerto's to be a good fit as my aim was to show their power and grace."
For his new work, Patrick Corbin is creating some movement through collaborative improvisation with the dancers, working from a contemporary dance base and tapering some of the movement into more balletic lines. "I'm working from a visceral place," he says. "My jumping off point is the moment we fall in love." Reading from his notebook full of choreographic journalling, he adds, "I want the movement to be: lyrical, soft, round, warm, billowy, sturdy, ecstatic, painful, burning, obsessive, frantic, and passionate."
Before this diverse program of dancing, audience members can enjoy fine dining experiences in nearby Somerville, NJ. Those who dine at Tapastre and Verve restaurants now through March 23 can enjoy discounts to the performance.
In Full Bloom at Raritan Valley Community College
March 23 at 8:00pm
Tickets: rvccarts.org, 908.725.3420