March 28, 2013

Press Releases


washington ballet

The previously announced Artistic Team will also include: vocalist E. Faye Butler, dramaturge Karen Zacarias, puppet maker Eric Van Wyk, & Flamenco dancer Edwin Aparico


Preliminary casting announced

The Washington Ballet will launch the company’s largest social media campaign to date


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Washington Ballet (TWB) continues the 2012.2013 season with the world premiere of Artistic Director Septime Webre’s Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises. A new ballet based on Ernest Hemingway’s novel opens with a preview May 8 and runs May 9-12, 2013 at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Eisenhower Theater.


“Adapting Hemingway to the stage might seem a daunting task, but with a closer look you find the novel is full of glamour, sex appeal, glorious music, and glamorous settings that translate well on stage,” stated Septime Webre, TWB’s Artistic Director.



Additional Creative Team:

The jazz and blues sounds of 1920s Paris will be recreated by composer and arranger Billy Novick, accompanied by legendary Chicago Blues Singer, E. Faye Butler.  When Ms. Butler performed during The Washington Ballet’s The Great Gatsby, The Washington Post stated, “with her hips grinding and her voice gurgling with raunchy wit, Butler was the unrivaled showstopper.”  The second act, set in Pamplona, Spain, will feature guest Flamenco dancers Anna Marquez  and , Edwin Aparico, who was featured on Dance Magazine’s Top 25 to Watch list. They will accompanied by flamenco guitarist Ricardo Marlow and vocalist, Hector Marquez. To evoke procession at the festival of Saint Fermin, puppet maker, Eric Van Wyk, will create large scale puppets similar to the gigantes y cabezudos, literally big heads, which are part of the parade during the annual festival.


To bring the novel The Sun Also Rises to stage, award winning playwright and dramaturge Karen Zacarias, has worked with Septime Webre to create a full length drama that speaks the language of ballet.


The production will feature costumes by Helen Q. Huang , set design by Hugh Landwehr,  lighting design by Clifton Taylor, and projections by Aaron Rhyne.


KAREN ZACARIAS’ (Dramaturge) award-winning plays include The Book Club Play, Legacy of Light, Mariela in The Desert, The Sins Of Sor Juana, and The  Adaptation Of How The Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents. Her play The Sins of Sor Juana was the winner of the Charles MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play at the 2000 Helen Hayes Awards and the 1998 Hispanic Playwrights’ Project at SCR. She is also winner of the 1998 D.C. Mayor’s Award for Outstanding Emerging Artist and a finalist at the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights’ Conference and the Jane Chambers National Women’s Playwrights’ Competition. Ms Zacarias’ plays have been produced at The Kennedy Center, Arena Stage, The Goodman, Round House Theater, The Denver Center, Alliance Theater, Imagination Stage, GALA, Berkshire Theater Festival, South Coast Rep, La Jolla Playhouse, Cleveland Playhouse, and San Jose Rep.  Ms. Zacarias’ is a playwright-in-residence at Arena Stage in Washington, DC and teaches at Georgetown University. She is the founder of Young Playwrights’ Theater, an award winning  theater company that teaches playwriting in local public schools in Washington, DC.


E. FAYE BUTLER (Vocalist) recently won the coveted Joseph Jefferson award for Best Actress in a Musical for her gut-wrenching portrayal of Caroline in Caroline, or Change at the Court Theatre. Ms. Butler is also a Recipient of five additional Joseph Jefferson Awards, two BTAA Awards, After Dark Award, John Barrymore Award, RAMI Award, three Helen Hayes Nominations, Excellence In Arts Award, and an Ovations Nomination. National and Regional tours include MammaMia!, Nunsense, Nunsense 2, and Don’t Bother Me. Regional theater productions include Saving Aimee; Gospel According To Fishman (Signature Theatre); The Wiz (La Jolla Playhouse); Suessical (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); Thoroughly Modern Millie and Little Shop of Horrors (Marriott Lincolnshire Theatre); Once On this Island (Centerstage); Could It Be Magic (Mercury Theatre); Comfortable Shoes (Royal George Theatre); Showboat (Sacramento Music Theatre); The Wizard Of Oz (Arkansas Repertory); Hello, Dolly!; Hot Mikado; and Sophisticated Ladies (Drury Lane Theatre).


ERIC VAN WYK (Puppet Maker)  received his M.F.A. in Scenic Design from the University of Maryland—College Park and his B.A. in Fine Arts from Dordt College returns to The Washington Ballet after designing the puppets for ALICE(in wonderland) and the puppets and scenery for The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe withThe Washington Ballet and Imagination Stage.  Other regional credits include at the Children’s Theatre Co. in Minneapolis being Scenic Designer for Mercy Watson to the Rescue!, Babe, The Sheep-Pig, Puppet and Scenic Designer for The Biggest Little House in the Forest, Puppet Designer for Alice in Wonderland, A Wrinkle in Time, Cinderella and Puppet Consultant for Bert & Ernie, Goodnight!  Minneapolis credits also include Open Eye Figure Theatre’s Milly & Tillie as Scenic Designer and the Guthrie Theater’s 39 Steps as Assistant Shadow Puppet Designer.  Regional credits include the scenic design of Breath, Boom! at the Studio Theater 2ndstage and the puppetry design of The Neverending Story at Imagination Stage.  He is a recipient of a 2009 Jim Henson Foundation Seed Grant for his shadow puppet work O the Sky! and a Puppeteers of America grant for his puppet design of Aslan for The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe.  He is a graduate of the 2005 Sandglass Theatre Summer Puppet Intensive.


EDWIN APARICO (Flamenco Dancer) , who is the co-founder and Artistic Manager of GALA’s Fuego Flamenco Festival, was featured in Dance Magazine’s annual “25 Artists to Watch” list in 2009 and has been described by critics as “the most amazing dancer seen in years” with his “hellfire footwork.” An internationally acclaimed artist, he has shared the stage with renowned dancers such as Carmela Greco, Chuscales, and Silverio Heredia, among others. Mr. Aparicio studied flamenco in Spain with La Tati and Tomás de Madrid, and in 2001 made his flamenco debut at Casa Patas in Madrid. He performed with the Washington National Opera under the direction of Plácido Domingo at the Kennedy Center, and with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Marion Alsop. Mr. Aparicio toured the United States with Reynaldo Rincόn’s Romeria Flamenca, was the featured artist in 2002 and 2005 at the Chicago Flamenco Festival, and appeared at the 2004 and 2005 Flamenco in the Sun Annual Festival in Miami with renowned artists Belén Maya, Pastora Galván, Pedro Cortés, and Jose Luis Rodríguez. In 2005, he also performed with Jόvenes Flamenco as a soloist and a company member at the Centro Cultural de San Blás in Madrid, and was the choreographer for Yerma by Federico García Lorca, GALA’s premiere production at its new theater. Mr. Aparicio has directed and choreographed for several national productions, including Intimo with Carmela Greco and Entresueño featuring La Truco. Mr. Aparicio is a faculty member of the Washington School of Ballet and regularly conducts flamenco classes throughout the country. He was nominated for the 2010 Metro DC Dance Award for Outstanding Individual Performance.


ANNA MENENDEZ (Flamenco Dancer) is based out of the Washington DC area. She has worked as a performer, teacher and choreographer since 1996. Her credits include performances at the Spanish and Mexican Embassies, The Kennedy Center, Lisner Auditorium, and the Smithsonian Institution. Ms. Menendez has danced in many Washington Opera productions such as Dona Francisquita and El Gato Montes. In the summer of 2001, Ms. Menendea was invited to dance with the company La Truco Flamenco at the Albeniz theater in Madrid, Spain, as they participated in the annual choreography competition, The Certamen. Ms. Menendez’s upcoming  projects and performances, include performing with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra on both their Symphony with a Twist and their Music for Youth concert series this Fall and Winter.


RICARDO (RICHARD) MARLOW (Flamenco Guitarist) was introduced to the guitar by his father, the eminent classical guitarist John E. Marlow. He went on to receive a degree from the James Madison School of Music in 1997. Mr. Marlow took up the flamenco guitar and studied with master, Gerardo Nunez in Sanlucar de Barrameda, Spain. Mr. Marlow has played for the Danza del Rio Flamenco Company, and with Paco de Malaga and Ana Martinez Dance Company. Since 1997 he has performed with Arte Flamenco Dance Company in venues such as The Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage and the Baltimore Museum of Art. In 2005, Mr. Marlow performed at the 20th Mayor’s Art’s Awards at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall and Manuel de Falla’s El Amor Brujo with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Strathmore and at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore. Mr. Marlow recently performed in Edwin Aparicio’s new work, Dos Mundos at the Gala Hispanic Theatre in 2008.


Preliminary Casting for Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises:

While not complete, preliminary casting includes The Washington Ballet Company members Jared Nelson creating the role of the protagonist Jake Barnes; Sona Kharatian as Lady Brett Ashley and Corey Landolt as Robert Cohen.


From Mr. Webre’s revolutionary vision and choreography the angst of the original “the lost generation” comes to life. Jake Barnes, an impotent World War I veteran, longs for the love of a modern woman, Lady Brett Ashley, whose numerous affairs and self-destructive acts cause much sorrow.  Jake’s friend Robert Cohn, a Jewish-American expatriate writer and former college boxer, is also obsessed with Brett. The ballet follows Jake, Brett, and Cohn from the cafés of Paris to Pamplona, Spain for the Festival of Saint Fermin and the running of the bulls.



To support the world premiere of Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises, The Washington Ballet is building its most comprehensive social media campaign which includes daily Facebook and Twitter postings complemented by a guest blogs, website postings and weekly email newsletter content.  The campaign will include interviews with the artists, historical photos, book covers from the novel, musical clips highlighting 1920s Jazz music, video clips from rehearsals and a not to be missed daily photo of a polydactyl cat.


Tickets for Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises, priced from $25 to $125, are available at online via the Washington Ballet website or the Kennedy Center website or by calling 202.467.4600, or at The Kennedy Center Box Office. The Kennedy Center is located at 2700 F Street NW, Washington, DC.

Hemingway: The Sun Also Rises (2013)

(World Premiere)

As part of The Washington Ballet (TWB) American Experience, TWB unveils a new ballet based on Ernest Hemingway’s American classic novel, 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’ left bank 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. The Kennedy Center is located at 2700 F Street NW, Washington, DC.



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.  

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

This world premiere is made possible by the generosity of Bill and Eve Lilley.

This production is adapted from the novel by Ernest Hemingway and made by special arrangement with The Patrick and Carol Hemingway Revocable Living



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