The School of Alberta Ballet put on an impressive series of dances including the larger set pieces from Petipa’s Paquita and a memorable Professional Division Grand Défilé at the Jubilee, reminding us why ballet is so important to Calgary’s enormous and committed dance community.

There was plenty of good dance and good news all around Saturday as The School of Alberta Ballet’s artistic principal Ashley McNeil announced a new funding initiative supported by the federal government. Equally important was the success of this year’s graduates from the Senior Division, two of whom, Braden Falusi and Victoria Robinson, will be joining the Alberta Ballet Trainee Program in the fall. Six more dancers have secured positions elsewhere, a strong ratio for the school in placing its graduates in good companies abroad.

Equally important to the performance was some fine choreography by Murray Kilgour and the artistic staff of The School of Alberta Ballet who gave us another traditional Grand Défilé worth every moment of our time. I have attended every Grand Défilé since its inception in 2014, but this year’s edition demonstrated the clearest and most direct line of uninterrupted professionalism I have seen running from Purple to Professional at the Graduate Level. With music by Verdi, Delibes and Rossini, eight groups danced to some imaginative and visually engaging set pieces. Orange Level impressed with their studies in control and contained motion while Blue and Turquoise danced strikingly well, making elaborate use of conventional ideas but in an array of sequences both delightful and visually appealing. Red level was excellent in their conspicuous use of space and balanced approaches to movement ideas that allowed everyone to demonstrate some interpretive prowess, balanced off with broad gesture and lyric motion.

But it was Edmund Stripe’s Dialogue 2 (Other Voices) that made the quietest, most authentic impact of …read more

Source:: Calgary Herald


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