The world renowned Smuin Ballet Company launches their 2009 season on Friday, October 2nd with a trilogy of works highlighted by the world premiere of Choreographer-in-Residence Amy Seiwert’s Soon These Two Worlds; Michael Smuin’s classic Medea; and closing with Fly Me to the Moon, a tribute to Frank Sinatra.
Seiwert, a former dancer with the Smuin Ballet, has been choreographing since 1999 and has won numerous awards. Soon These Two Worlds is set to music from the Grammy Award-winning Kronos Quartet’s Pieces of Africa, which reached number 1 on Billboard’s Top World Albums chart.
Next on the bill is Medea, the late Michael Smuin’s ballet that weaves a story of passion, jealousy and revenge. It focuses on the five main character of the myth of Medea, and is set to a suite from Samuel Barber’s Medea, originally composed for the 1946 Martha Graham Ballet. The breakneck pace of the dance details the complex and treacherous relationships between the characters and showcases Smuin’s gift for dramatic narrative.
The evening closes with Smuin’s tribute to the genius of Sinatra. A blend of ballet and popular dance, it is the embodiment of the smooth and stylish songs that the “Chairman of the Boards” delivered so well. “I’ve Got You Under My Skin”, “That’s Life” and “The Lady is a Tramp” are several of the songs in the final ballet for the evening, which closes with a high-kicking version of “New York, New York”.
“Michael was a great story teller with his work”, explains Celia Fushille, the Artistic and Administrative Director of the Smuin Ballet. Fushille should know. As a founding member of the ballet company, Fushille worked closely with Smuin performing as the lead dancer and the inspiration for many of Smuin’s works, such as Frankie and Johnny, Cyrano, The Blue Angel,and her signature role in “Santa Baby” from The Christmas Ballet.
She had worked with Smuin as Associate Director of the Ballet Company since 1998 before assuming the Director’s position in 2007 following the untimely passing of Michael Smuin. Having performed many of Smuin’s most notable works, and assigned by Michael Smuin to be the creative caretaker of his legacy, Fushille continues to lead the ballet to further the vision conceived by the company’s namesake founder.
“ I was prepared well by Michael to carry on the legacy of his works with the permission to have his works performed in perpetuity,” said Fushille, who added,” We just can’t be a “museum” company, performing Michael’s works over and over. It is exciting to stage Amy’s (Seiwert) world premiere and add to the legacy of the company.”
With a ticket price range between $18 and $56, the ballet is well priced for those who “like ballet,” or those who “don’t know about ballet, but are interested in seeing it.” “Our goal is to keep dance accessible and affordable,” said the Director.
Staged at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre (Bay St. at Lyon), performances will take place from October 2-10 at the following times: 10/2 at 8pm; 10/3 at 2pm and 8pm; 10/4 at 2 PM; and 10/6-10 at 8PM.
“Fly Me to the Moon”, by the Smuin Ballet will be performed at the Palace of Fine Arts theatre, starting on Friday, October 2nd and continuing through Saturday, October 10th. To reserve tickets go to www.Smuinallet.org.,or call the ticket office at 415-978-2787.