CAROLINA BALLET TO PREMIERE THE LITTLE MERMAID
RALEIGH, NC — Principal guest choreographer Lynne Taylor-Corbett has created a over dozen ballets on Carolina Ballet over the past 14 seasons that run the gamut from The Ugly Duckling to Dracula, Carolina Jamboree to Carmina Burana, and most recently seen in Raleigh, her very moving Lost and Found. Now Lynne Taylor Corbett and Carolina Ballet are presenting a new ballet to Hans Christian Andersen’s endearing fairy tale, The Little Mermaid. The production opens Thursday, March 15, 2012 and runs over three weekends through April 1 at the A.J. Fletcher Theater of the Progress Energy Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Raleigh. The schedule of performances is as follows:
Thursday, March 15 & Friday, March 16 at 8pm
Saturday, March 17 & 31 at 2:00pm & 8:00pm
Saturday, March 24 at 11:00am, 2:00pm & 8:00pm
Sunday, March 18, 25 & April 1 at 2pm
Artistic director Robert Weiss says that this new production of The Little Mermaid will combine the charm of The Ugly Duckling with the theatricality of Dracula. “My goal is to provide Broadway-style production values using traditional ballet conventions,” explains Taylor-Corbett. “Mermaid will be a show for adults and children alike with plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor, cutting edge eye candy and timeless pathos.” The Little Mermaid is part of Carolina Ballet’s family subscription package for the spring season that includes Beauty and the Beast in May.
Lynne Taylor-Corbett commissioned Michael Moricz, who composed the music for Carolina Ballet’s The Ugly Duckling, to create an original score for The Little Mermaid. Moricz was for many years the music director for “Mister Rogers Neighborhood” on PBS. The score includes narration and lyrics with the music to enhance the telling of the story. Curtis Cregan (who was seen in Raleigh last season as the narrator in The Ugly Duckling) will narrate The Little Mermaid. Cregan performed in Rent on Broadway and starred in the popular children’s show “Hi5” on the Discovery Channel. The voice of Mermaid will be sung by Jenn Gambatese who played Jane in Disney’s Tarzan on Broadway; and the voice of the Sea Witch will be sung by Joy Hermalyn, who most recently was on Broadway in Death Takes a Holiday.
As she did for Dracula, Taylor-Corbett has hired Alan Larsen to design projections to create the atmosphere of the underwater sea kingdom. Larsen is currently working with Stephen King on his new musical. David Heuvel and Jeff A.R. Jones have designed the costumes and scenery respectively. This artistic duo has worked together on many Carolina Ballet productions including Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Tempest Fantasy and The Masque of the Red Death. Ross Kolman is the lighting designer.
To augment the Little Mermaid program, Robert Weiss has chosen several pas de deux from the company’s repertory to rotate throughout the three week run. However, a new pas de deux for Carolina Ballet from Le Corsaire will be included on all the shows. The Le Corsaire Pas de Deux, was choreographed by Marius Petipa in 1868 to music of Adolphe Adam. This pas de deux is from an old Russian ballet made famous in the west by Rudolph Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn when Nureyev introduced it to The Royal Ballet in London in the 1960s. It has since been performed by most of the major ballet stars of the past fifty years.
The other pas de deux on the program from Carolina Ballet’s repertory, all choreographed by Robert Weiss, are Sturmische Liebe with music by Gustave Mahler; Adagio to music by Tomas Albinoni; and The Visitation music to of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
For information on the family subscription package or single tickets, please call the Carolina Ballet box office at 919 719-0900 or Ticketmaster at 800 982-2787. Ticket prices range from $65-25; and $10 student rush tickets, with valid student ID, are available one half hour before the performance. Please note that the 11:00am performance on Saturday, March 24 will be The Little Mermaid only and there will be a special price for this one performance.
Carolina Ballet, Inc. has taken its place amongAmerica’s premier arts organizations. Under the innovative direction of artistic directorRobert Weiss, a talented company, fiscally responsible management and community support, Carolina Ballet exposes audiences to traditional ballet by legendary masters and new works of contemporary choreographers. This fourteenth season represents the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit and ever-increasing quality of life experienced here inNorth Carolina.