April 15, 2012

Press Releases


the washington ballet 

The Washington Ballet’s American Experience Initiative Includes the World Premiere of Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises


The Washington Ballet Increases Season to Include a Two-Week Run of Dracula at The Kennedy Center; a Fifth Subscription Gala Performance Program –Tour-de-Force; and Sunday Evening Subscriptions

Season Includes Four World and Three Company Premieres

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Washington Ballet (TWB) announces its 2012.2013 Season: SEDUCTION. The Company’s 37th season features a number of new initiatives including The American Experience series and the world premiere of Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises; a two-week performance run of Michael Pink’s Dracula; and a fifth subscription-series program Tour-de-Force: Stars and Stripes.  Four world and three company premieres, diverse classical and contemporary repertoire, added performances and Sunday-evening subscription series, and a new virtuoso gala-performance program that celebrates the Company’s dancers, the new Washington Ballet Five-Series subscription season is designed to seduce audiences.


“I am looking forward to this provocative and engaging season which sees The Washington Ballet grow in a number of important ways, including lengthening our season and performance runs, as well as mounting significant world and company premieres,” stated Septime Webre, Artistic Director.


The 2012.2013 season opens in October at The Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater with the company premiere and an extended two-week run (October 24 – November 4, 2012) of Michael Pink’s critically-acclaimed Dracula. One of the entertainment events of the year, this wildly theatrical and voluptuous ballet has had audiences reaching for superlatives throughout England and in Atlanta, Milwaukee and Denver. For several years The Washington Ballet has enjoyed a steady increase in single ticket-buying audiences and sales, in particular the sold-out performances of ALICE (in wonderland) and the Great Gatsby. In response to the public’s positive reactions to these full-length productions, The Washington Ballet has decided to extend the performance run of this thrilling ballet and future major works to enable more audiences access to highly-anticipated Washington Ballet productions.


“After listening to inquiries from patrons who missed the opportunity to attend performances of ALICE and Gatsby because of limited dates or sold-out performances, the Ballet has decided to extend our performances of highly popular major productions from one to two weeks,” said Webre.


In February, the Ballet returns to Sidney Harman Hall at the Harman Center for two weeks with two separate programs. The first L’Amour (love, baby), opening February 13 with performances through the 17th, is a mixed repertory program by three exciting American choreographers about the many aspects of love. The world premiere of Dangerous Liaisons by David Palmer, set to Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, is a high stakes game of opulent lust, passion and betrayal as only 18th century French aristocrats can play. Set to an alluring score by Philip Glass, Edwaard Liang’s dazzling Wunderland is known for its incredibly passionate partnerings. The program will also include a soon-to-be announced world premiere by one of the ballet world’s up-and-coming choreographers.


The Ballet unveils its second initiative, a fifth subscription program when it opens (February 21 through 24) Tour-de-Force, a new gala-style program that showcases TWB dancers in a series of virtuosic pas de deuxs, trois and quartets from classical and contemporary masterpieces. The first iteration of the reoccurring gala-style program pays tribute to the Presidential inaugural season with the evening’s centerpiece, Balanchine’s exuberantly patriotic Stars and Stripes.


Tour-de-Force: Stars and Stripes is a wonderful way to celebrate the virtuosity, grace, beauty, power and athleticism of The Washington Ballet dancers. These special programs will be crafted to showcase our dancers so audiences will get to know and appreciate their individual characteristics while enjoying some of the best of classical and contemporary dance,” stated Webre.


In March, the Ballet returns to The Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater with Septime Webre’s ravishing Cinderella. Opening March 20 with performances through March 24, Cinderella boasts Prokofiev’s lush score in a gorgeous retelling of this famous fairy tale. Storytelling at its finest – Cinderella’s magic pumpkins, evil stepsisters and swirling ballroom scenes crackle with wit, lavish costumes and dazzling dance.


Capitalizing on the adaptation of The Great Gatsby, TWB announces a new multi-year initiative entitled The Washington Ballet American Experience from which will derive a series of full-length ballets over the next several years. Through the American Experience, The Washington Ballet’s tradition of classical ballet and affinity for storytelling, especially the iconic American stories of the people around us, further develops what is becoming Washington Ballet’s uniquely American choreographic voice.


“The American Experience series brings together my passion for dance and my love of American literature, theater and art, much of which is very descriptive, lyrical and balletic. As the first of these new explorations into American culture, I am very excited about bringing Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises to the stage. The story is intriguing and perfect for our dancers who have begun to embody the roles of Jake Barnes, Brett Ashley, and the other expatriates in my imagination. Subsequent titles are still in development and may include explorations into the works of Henry James, Tennessee Williams, Langston Hughes and others.”


The Washington Ballet closes the season with Septime Webre’s Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises, a new balletic retelling of one of the great American novels, May 8 through 12, at the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater. Considered by many to be Hemingway’s finest novel, the story follows an American journalist and the ‘lost generation” of 1920s American expatriates from Paris’ cafes on the Westbank to a thrilling “running of the bulls” at the Pamplona festival.


The season is complemented with Septime Webre’s holiday must-see production of The Nutcracker in November and December. The Nutcracker returns to THEARC Theater for five performances November 23 through 25. On November 29, The Nutcracker opens a four-week run at the celebrated Warner Theatre. Set in historic Georgetown and starring George Washington as the heroic Nutcracker, Webre’s acclaimed production is a Washington, DC tradition that enchants audiences of all ages.


The Washington Ballet’s Family Series begins with The Nutcracker on December 1 and 2 and continues with Stars & Stripes/KIDS, a special Tour-de-Force program showcasing the Studio Company and guests from the Company’s celebrated School of Ballet for one performance only on February 23 at The Harman Center. Septime Webre’s lively and hilarious adaptation of Cinderella on March 23 and 24 at the Kennedy Center and Peter and the Wolf, performed by the Studio Company May 18 and 19 at THEARC Theater, rounds out the season’s Family Series


Subscriptions, priced from $106 to $478, are now on sale and can be purchased by visiting the Washington Ballet’s website or by calling 202.362.3606 x605. Five-Series subscription packages include Dracula, L ’Amour (love, baby), Tour-de-Force: Stars & Stripes; Cinderella and Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises. Family Series subscription packages include The Nutcracker, Stars & Stripes/KIDS, Cinderella and Peter and the Wolf. Additionally, subscribers may add inthewings, the highly-popular speaker series that provides insight into the creation of TWB productions to their subscriptions. Single tickets will go on sale on September 10, 2012 (tentative).



Dracula (1996)

(Company Premiere)

One of the entertainment events of the year, The Washington Ballet presents Michael Pink’s chilling blockbuster Dracula. This wildly theatrical and voluptuous ballet is a breathtaking story of passion, yearning, cruelty and sacrifice. Dracula stakes its claim as this Halloween’s most thrilling adventure. Pink’s Count is a mesmerizing seducer of the darkest order, providing a fresh interpretation of one of Western culture’s most haunting stories.


Wednesday, October 24, at 7:30PM (Preview)

Thursday, October 25 at 7:30PM (Opening)

Friday, October 26 at 7:30PM

Saturday, October 27 at 1:30 PM and 7:30PM

Sunday, October 28 at 1:30 PM and 7:30PM

Wednesday, October 31 at 7:30PM

Thursday, November 1 at 7:30PM

Friday, November 2 at 7:30PM

Saturday, November 3 at 1:30 and 7:30PM

Sunday, November 4 at 1:30PM


Music: Philip Feeney

Choreography: Michael Pink

Sets & Costumes: Lez Brotherston

Lighting: Paul Pyant

Performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Eisenhower Theater



The Nutcracker (2004)

Septime Webre’s critically acclaimed The Nutcracker transports us back in time to historic Washington, DC and stars George Washington as the heroic Nutcracker. Full of swirling snowflakes, magnificent sets and costumes and Tchaikovsky’s beloved score, the curtain rises and the stage bursts with waltzing cherry blossoms, dancing sugar plums and other enchanting adaptations that have made Webre’s Nutcracker a Washington tradition with raves from critics and sold-out crowds.


Thursday, November 29 at 7PM (Preview)
Friday, November 30 at 7PM (Opening)
Saturday, December 1 at 2PM & 7PM
Sunday, December 2 at 1PM
Wednesday, December 5 at 7PM
Thursday, December 6 at 7PM
Friday, December 7 at 7PM
Saturday, December 8 at 2PM & 7PM
Sunday, December 9 at 1PM & 5:30PM
Wednesday, December 12 at 7PM
Thursday, December 13 at 7PM
Friday, December 14 at 7PM
Saturday, December 15 at 2PM & 7PM
Sunday, December 16 at 1PM & 5:30PM
Tuesday, December 18 at 7PM
Wednesday, December 19 at 7PM
Thursday, December 20 at 7PM
Friday, December 21 at 2PM & 7PM
Saturday, December 22 at  2PM & 7PM

Sunday, December 23 at 1PM & 5:30PM


Music by Pyotr Ilych Tchaikovsky

Choreography by Septime Webre

Scenic Design by Peter Horne

Costume Design by Judanna Lynn

Lighting Design by Tony Tucci

Performed at the Warner Theatre



L ‘Amour (love, baby)

From three of today’s most exciting choreographers come stories about the many aspects of love.  Dangerous Liaison, a world premiere by David Palmer, is a high stakes game of opulent lust, passion and betrayal as only 18th century French aristocrats can play. Set to Vivaldi’s lush Four Seasons, The Marquise challenges Valmont to seduce an innocent girl before she marries. Set to an alluring score by Philip Glass, Edwaard Liang’s dazzling Wunderland evokes a myriad of feelings, especially longing in its incredibly passionate partnerings. And, a soon to be announced world premiere on the theme of “love” by one of the ballet world’s up-and-coming choreographers.


Wednesday, February 13, 7:30PM (Preview)

Thursday, February 14, 7:30PM (Opening)

Friday, February 15, 7:30PM

Saturday, February 16, 2:30PM & 7:30PM

Sunday, February 17, 1PM & 6PM

Performed at The Harman Center, Sidney Harman Hall


Dangerous Liaisons (2013)

World Premiere

Music: Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons

Choreography: David Palmer


Wunderland (2009)

Music: Philip Glass

Choreography: Edwaard Liang



Tour-de-Force: Stars & Stripes

With its first Tour-de-Force showcase evening of classical and contemporary works, The Washington Ballet pays tribute to the Presidential inaugural season. The evening begins with magnificent excerpts of classical ballets (Le Corsaire and Don Quixote) and contemporary masterpieces (Opposites Distract). Set to the marches of Conrad Sousa, the evening’s centerpiece, Balanchine’s exuberantly patriotic Stars and Stripes, contains as much pure dance as many full-length ballets.  


Thursday, February 21, 7:30PM (Preview)

Friday, February 22, 7:30PM (Opening)

Saturday, February 23, 2:30PM (Stars & Stripes/KIDS) & 7:30PM

Sunday, February 24, 1PM & 6PM

Performed at The Harman Center, Sidney Harman Hall


Program includes excerpts from:

Le Corsaire (1856)

Music: Adolphe Adam, Cesare Pugni, Léo Delibes, Riccardo Drigo, Prince Oldenburg

Choreography: Anna Marie Holmes after Marius Petipa and Konstantin Sergeyev


Don Quixote (1869)

Music: Leon

Choreography: Anna Marie Holmes after Marius Petipa and Alexander Grosky


Opposites Distract (1999)

(Company Premiere)

Music: Ottmar Leibert

Choreography: Elaine Kudo


Stars and Stripes (1958)

(Company Premiere)

Music: Conrad Sousa

Choreography: George Balanchine



Cinderella (2003)

Septime Webre’s Cinderella combines magnificent beauty, ravishing costumes and Prokofiev’s ultra-lush score in the retelling of this popular romance of a poor girl whose fairy godmother helps her win the love of a Prince. Storytelling at its finest—magic pumpkins, evil step-sisters and handsome courtiers in a swirling mirrored ballroom scene from Versailles. Crackling with wit, lavish costumes and dazzling dance, Cinderella will sweep you off your feet


Wednesday, March 20, 7:30PM (Preview)

Thursday, March 21, 7:30PM (Opening)

Friday, March 22, 7:30PM

Saturday, March 23, 1:30PM & 7:30PM

Sunday, March 24, 1:30PM & 7:30PM


Music: Sergei Prokofiev

Choreography: Septime Webre

Sets: James Kronzer

Costumes: Judanna Lynn

Lighting: Joshua Michaels

Performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Eisenhower Theater



Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises (2013)

(World Premiere)

As part of The Washington Ballet American Experience, TWB unveils a new ballet based on Ernest Hemingway’s American classic, The Sun Also Rises. Considered by many to be his finest novel, the story follows an American journalist, Jake Barnes, a member of the “lost generation” of 1920s American expatriates, from the seedy café life of Paris’ Westbank to the thrilling “running of the bulls” at the Pamplona Festival. Through the extraordinary vision and choreography of Septime Webre, this newest exploration into the American literary canon will capture the imagination of dance lovers everywhere.


Wednesday, May 8, 7:30PM (Preview)

Thursday, May 9, 7:30PM (Opening)

Friday, May 10, 7:30PM

Saturday, May 11, 1:30PM & 7:30PM

Sunday, May 12, 1:30PM & 7:30PM

Choreography: Septime Webre

Performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Eisenhower Theater



Peter and the  Wolf (2006)

Against his grandfather’s wishes, brave Peter sets out to capture a wolf. Along the way he encounters some animal friends and becomes the hero of his village. Based on the popular Russian children’s story and set to Prokofiev’s world-famous music, this captivating ballet performed by The Washington Ballet Studio Company in the intimate THEARC Theater, will delight audiences of all ages.


Saturday, May 18, 1PM & 5:30PM

Sunday, May 19, 1PM & 5:30PM


Music: Sergei Prokofiev

Choreography: Brian Reeder

Performed at THEARC Theater



Five-Series and Family Series subscriptions range in price from $106 to $478, depending on seat location and date of performance. To subscribe, visit Washington Ballet’s website or call 202.362.3606 x605.



Single tickets for the 2011.2012 Season go on sale September 10 (tentative) and may be purchased online or via the Kennedy Centre website.



Originally founded as The Washington School of Ballet in 1944 by legendary ballet pioneer Mary Day and incorporated as a professional company in 1976, The Washington Ballet (TWB) is one of the pre-eminent ballet organizations in the United States.  TWB built an international reputation presenting bold works by choreographers from around the world, including Choo-San Goh, Christopher Wheeldon, Mark Morris, Twyla Tharp and Nacho Duato, as well as Neoclassical masterworks and fresh stagings of 19th century classics. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Septime Webre and Executive Director Peter M. Branch, TWB has embraced a three-part mission: ensuring excellence in its professional performance company; growing the next generation of dancers through its Washington School of Ballet; and serving the community in which it resides through robust community engagement programs. 


American Airlines is the official airline of The Washington Ballet.

Amtrak is the official passenger rail service of The Washington Ballet.

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