Inspiring ballet

I saw some of the most amazing ballet in Seattle tonight at the PNB. It was Director’s Choice, final performances of the season … and I was blown away.

The first, Dances at a Gathering, by Jerome Robbins was stunning. The Chopin played throughout – piano-only – was spell-binding, while the dance throughout was whimsical, with lots of cool lifts and unexpected moves. The piece was one hour, and I could tell people were getting restless … incl. the kids sitting in front of me. But oh well – we all survived.

After the Rain pas de deux, by Christopher Wheeldon, brought me to tears. Seriously – and it felt a little wild that it moved me so. Louise Nadeau and Jeffrey Stanton were the principals in this – and they were phenomenal. Their costumes were simple – Stanton performed shirt-less and Nadeau had a simple leotard with bare legs. She is probably my age (mid-40s) and retiring this year, but that didn’t stop her from doing a backbend, and letting Stanton pick her up and move her around while she kept her form. I love Wheeldon, and love that Peter Boal brings works like this to Seattle. Who needs New York? 😉

The final piece, a Balanchine, Symphony in C, was much more classic; music by Bizet. The women wore Swan Lake-esque white stiff skirts and sparkly crowns (at least the leads). The men’s costumes were not so great – purple with sparkly shoulders. I enjoyed this work, but not as much as the others.

And at least the ballet tonight in general outweighed the crank in me that sometimes gets annoyed by people around me … chewing gum, making noise, kicking my seat. A woman a few seats away from me grumbled at someone at one point about rattling their car keys – so I guess I am not alone in the crank category at the ballet. Always nice to feel like that.

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