Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Nevada Ballet Theatre Presents: A Balanchine Celebration

Nevada Ballet Theatre (NBT) is proud to present A Balanchine Celebration as the Company’s opening performance at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts for its 2015-2016 season. Each piece will be accompanied by a full orchestra featuring members of the Las Vegas Philharmonic, under the direction of guest conductor, Leif Bjaland. Performances will take place on Saturday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 8 at 2 p.m. with tickets starting at $29.

This exciting trio of ballets begins with one of Balanchine’s most meaningful and historical works, Serenade, the first ballet he choreographed in America. Slaughter on Tenth Avenue – a Las Vegas premiere – is next on the program and ushers in Broadway dreams, Russian dancers and the Mob from the classic Rodgers and Hart comedy On Your Toes, which demonstrates Balanchine’s triumphs on both stage and screen.  A celebratory finale of romance and love set against a city skyline completes the evening with Who Cares? where the bubbly Americana songbook of George Gershwin is brought to life with colorful ensemble dancing, romantic duets and sparkling solos.

“The combination and range of these three works demonstrate what a genius George Balanchine was and the influence he has had on the dance world,” said NBT Executive Director & CEO Beth Barbre. “From jazz to classical ballet, he was able to seamlessly blend so many styles of the art form. Our dancers are thrilled to perform these world-renowned pieces here in Las Vegas.”

Nevada Ballet Theatre will also present a free pre-performance educational presentation, called Insights, in the Troesh Studio Theater at The Smith Center, starting 45 minutes prior to each performance time (6:45 p.m. Nov. 7; 1:15 p.m. Nov. 8). Designed to illuminate the creative process and narrative of each work, Insights for A Balanchine Celebration will feature a Q&A session with Mr. Balanchine’s longtime personal assistant and one of the founders of his Trust, Barbara Horgan and will be moderated by famed “Balanchine Ballerina” and Vanity Fair contributing editor Heather Watts.

About the Performance
Serenade is considered “a milestone in the history of dance.” A signature work of New York City Ballet, it has rarely been out of their repertoire. Without a narrative, it contains four movements: “Sonatina,” “Waltz,” “Russian Dance” and “Elegy.” This beautiful work originated from an evening ballet class where Balanchine taught his students the differences between class work and stage technique. Balanchine even incorporated spontaneous rehearsal “mishaps” into the work, such as a dancer falling or a student arriving late to class. Its first presentation was in 1934 by students at the School of American Ballet at an estate in White Plains, New York. Since then, it has been performed and admired worldwide.

This production is supported by a grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, in honor of Nancy Houssels.

Tickets can be ordered by calling The Smith Center Box Office at (702) 749-2000 or by visiting

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