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Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Thursday, September 30, 2010

Jacobs School of Music debuts world premiere of new choreography in Fall Ballet

WHAT: A Choreographer's Evening by Indiana University Ballet Theater
WHEN: Oct. 8 and 9, 8 p.m.
WHERE: IU's Musical Arts Center, 101 N. Jordan Ave., just north of the intersection at Third Street
TICKETS: Currently on sale through the Musical Arts Center box office and Ticketmaster, tickets are $12-20 for adults and $8-16 for full-time students of any age with valid ID. Box office hours are Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Ticket information is available online at, or call the box office at 812-855-7433.

September 30, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- This season, falling leaves bring graceful leaps to the Indiana University Musical Arts Center stage with a world premiere of new choreography from New York choreographer Joshua Bergasse.

"A Choreographer's Evening" opens the IU Ballet Theater season Oct. 8-9.

Print-Quality Photo

The 2010 IU Ballet Theater season commences with "A Choreographer's Evening" on Oct. 8 and 9 at 8 p.m., featuring four separate dances that blend modern, classical and original styles that highlight a broad range of choreography in dance.

The show begins with "Noir," an edgy, modern piece choreographed by legendary dancer and choreographer Twyla Tharp.

Tharp designed the ballet to be driven by darkness: five dancers, all in black, channel erotic desire and aggression in a graceful brawl. Suspense builds on stage as the mythological Greek goddess of the underworld meddles with human affairs.

"It is loosely based on the myth of Persephone," Vernon said. "And it's a great example of contemporary ballet, at times comparable to shifting sands."

Following "Noir" is "Allegro Brillante," a powerful ballet choreographed by George Balanchine, whom Vernon refers to as "the great master of choreography."

"It's a true visualization of the music, which is Balanchine's trademark," Vernon said. "It is exciting, exacting and romantic -- one of his best."

The piece, characterized by quick, rigorous movements, adheres to classic form and strives to match every note of Russian composer Peter llyich Tchaikovsky's Third Piano Concerto.

"It contains everything I know about classical ballet in 13 minutes," Balanchine said upon the performance's debut in 1956.

"Glinka Pas de Trois," another piece choreographed by Balanchine, speeds up the pace on stage.

The dance, set to Russian composer Mikhail Glinka's upbeat melodies, requires quick movements and lightening reflexes from three featured dancers.

"This Pas de Trois dates from Balanchine's more classical period," Vernon said. "It is a filigree of steps -- brilliant and very challenging for the dancers."

The evening's final presentation is a world premiere, which was choreographed for IU Ballet Theater.

"The Baker Dances," written by Jacobs School Distinguished Professor David Baker and choreographed by Bergasse over a four-week period, features lively, jazz-influenced movements.

Baker's pieces, respectively titled "Aspects of Andy," "Boogie-Woogie" and "5M Calypso," inspired Bergasse's modern choreography. Together, they bring jazz culture to life in a brand new ballet.

"It will be an electric finish to an exciting evening," Vernon said.

Tickets are on sale now through the Musical Arts Center box office (812-855-7433), online at or at any Ticketmaster location.

For more information about the Jacobs School of Music, see