THE WASHINGTON BALLET PRESENTS DRACULA

September 15, 2012

Press Releases

THE WASHINGTON BALLET PRESENTS DRACULA

TWB mounts Michael Pink’s critically-acclaimed production based on  Bram Stoker’s classic novel

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Washington Ballet’s (TWB) 2012.2013 season begins in October with Dracula with the  company premiere of Michael Pink’s chilling, mesmerizing retelling of Bram Stoker’s famous horror story, which runs for 13 performances October 24- November 4 at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Eisenhower Theater.

A combination of the intense choreography from Mr. Pink, Philip Feeney’s haunting score, Lez Brotherston’s  dark sets and costumes, and Paul Pyant’s dramatic lighting, makes Dracula the ballet to bring the fear and excitement this fall.

Denis Malinkine, the original Dracula whom Michael Pink set the choreography for will be joining TWB as répétiteur for Dracula. Mr. Malinkine danced the role of Dracula numerous times including the premiere performance in 1996 at Northern Ballet.

“I am thrilled that Washington Ballet will be presenting Dracula in the Nation’s capital this October,” stated Michael Pink, choreographer of Dracula. “I am grateful to Artistic Director Septime Webre for his invitation to work with the company and to have the opportunity to share my internationally acclaimed production.”
“Michael Pink’s Dracula distills perfectly Bram Stoker’s gothic tale,” stated TWB’s Artistic Director, Septime Webre.  “Pink’s chillingly theatrical approach, the lush emotional qualities of the characters and the sheer dramatic power of the work will leave the artists and the audiences breathless”.

Tickets for Dracula priced from $25 to $125, are available at the Kennedy Center Box Office, or 202.467.4600.  Tickets are also available at The Washington Ballet’s website.

 

Michael Pink’s Dracula (1996)

The World Premiere of Michael Pink’s Dracula was September 16, 1996  in Bradford Alhambra, England by the Northern Ballet Theatre.  The premiere was timed to correspond with the 100th anniversary of the publishing of the novel in 1997.  Mr. Pink’s highly popular Dracula has been performed in Atlanta, New Zealand, Norway, Colorado, Milwaukee and more.

 

Bram Stoker’s  Dracula

Dracula by Bram Stoker was first published in 1897.  The novel follows Jonathan Harker in his struggle against the vampire, Count Dracula.  Dracula introduced the modern idea of vampires, the undead and the horror genre to readers.  Stoker’s Dracula characters and story have appeared in numerous films, television shows, plays and novels over the past century.

 

Plot Summary

Jonathan Harker, a London solicitor, travels to Transylvania to help Count Dracula with the purchase of property in England.  Harker arrives in Transylvania during a violent ritual sacrifice designed to protect the village from the dangers of “All Souls Night.”  Harker continues his journey from the village to Count Dracula’s castle.

 

Exhausted from his trip, Harker falls into a dreamlike state where he is seduced by three women.  Count Dracula interrupts the seduction by distracting the vampire women with a live blood offering.  Dracula then begins tormenting Harker himself.  As the lines between dream and reality blur, Harker awakens with a scream to find himself in a London sanatorium in his wife, Mina’s arms.

 

Later, Mina’s friend Lucy is dancing at a lavish hotel.  The party is interrupted by the sinister Count Dracula.  Lucy is drawn to Dracula and later appears to be in a trance.  Lucy is taken to the sanatorium by Dr. Van Helsing, who notices strange puncture marks on her neck and surrounds her with garlic.

 

Count Dracula returns during the night, and in the morning Lucy’s body is discovered.  Her fiancé places a crucifix on her lips and Lucy awakens only to attack him before escaping into the night.

 

Dracula then visits Harker’s wife Mina and carries her off into the night.  Harker, Van Helsing and others discover Dracula, Mina and the other undead just as the sun rises.  The light overpowers Dracula and he is killed by the men with a stake to the heart.

 

ABOUT THE ARTISTS
PHILIP FEENEY (Composer) studied composition at the University of Cambridge with Robin Holloway and Hugh Wood, and subsequently at the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome under Franco Donatoni. His works have been performed extensively throughout Europe, and he is most noted for his work in ballet and dance. After a period as pianist/composer for the Teatrodanza di Roma (1980-84), he returned to London and has been composer-in-residence for the Central School of Ballet and musical director for their national tour. As a pianist, Mr. Feeney has worked with many companies, including Northern Ballet Theatre, the Gulbenkian Company, Birmingham Royal Ballet, London Contemporary Dance Theatre, Rambert Dance Company, White Oak Project and the Martha Graham Company. Apart from over twenty scores for Ballet Central, he has collaborated with many different choreographers including Michael Pink, William Louther, Jane Dudley, Christopher Gable, Sandra Fuciarelli, Derek Williams, Chick Eldridge and Didy Veldman. His long-standing association with Northern Ballet Theatre began in 1987 with Memoire Imaginaire, which initiated the prolific collaboration with Michael Pink that went on to produce Strange Meeting and Danse Classique.

MICHAEL PINK (Choreographer) began his tenure as Artistic Director of the Milwaukee Ballet Company in December of 2002. Trained as a classical dancer at the Royal Ballet School, he performed in several productions at the Royal Opera House. His talent for choreography was first noted and encouraged by Dame Ninette de Valois and Sir Frederick Ashton. His early choreographic work won him first place in the inaugural Ursula Moreton Choreographic Competition and the Royal Society of Arts Competition. Mr. Pink was invited by Sir Frederick Ashton to assist in choreographing the Anacat Fashion Show for HRH Princess Margaret. He joined London Festival Ballet [now English National Ballet] in 1975and has worked as répétiteur for Rudolf Nureyev’s production of Romeo & Juliet at the Paris Opera and La Scala, Milan. In 1987 he became the Founding Director of Ballet Central. His collaboration with composer Philip Feeney produced many original works for the company as well as Memoire Imaginare, for Northern Ballet Theatre, which he later adapted for use by H.T.V .International as the centerpiece of a film drama. Mr. Pink joined Northern Ballet Theatre as Associate Artistic Director in 1988. His works have been presented by Boston Ballet, Norwegian National Ballet, The Royal New Zealand Ballet, Colorado Ballet and Atlanta Ballet.

CHRISTOPHER GABLE (Director) was the director of Northern Ballet Theatre at the time of his death. Mr. Gable was born in London and studied at the Royal Ballet School, joining the touring section of the Royal Ballet in 1957, becoming first a soloist (1959), then principal (1961).  He joined the Covent Garden Royal ballet in 1963 and resigned in 1967.  He was the Royal’s “modern” dancer, an adorable British beach boy, who  created roles in The Invitation and Images of Love (Macmillan) and The Two Pigeons (Ashton). Mr. Gable was a very theatrical artistic director, building a repertory of highly dramatic works, and giving Northern Ballet Theatre a distinctive, and very popular, profile.

LEZ BROTHERSTON (Scenic & Costume Designer) trained at Central School of Arts and Design. He has designed sets and costumes for dance, theatre, and opera. He is an Associate Artist of Matthew Bourne’s company, New Adventures.  Most recently he designed and co-directed Les Liaisons Dangereuses with Adam Cooper in Japan.  Other work in the field of dance includes; A Soldier’s Tale, Play Without Words, The Car Man, Cinderella, Swan Lake, Highland Fling, Bounce, Six Faces, Carmen, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, A Christmas Carol, and Romeo and Juliet. Awards he has received for his work include a Tony Award for Swan Lake, an Oliver Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance for Set and Costumse for Cinderella and most recently a Critics Circle Award for his outstanding achievement in design for dance.

 

PAUL PYANT (Lighting Designer) is a graduate and Associate of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. He has long associations with Glyndebourne Opera; English National Opera; The Royal Opera, Covent Garden; Royal National Theatre; English National Ballet and Northern Ballet Theatre. Opera work worldwide includes productions in America, Australia, New Zealand, France, Holland, Belgium, Israel, Austria, Japan and Italy. Theatre work includes productions for the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Donmar Warehouse, and productions in London’s West End and on Broadway in New York. His work in ballet has included productions for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, the Norwegian National Ballet, Boston Ballet, Milwaukee Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Colorado Ballet and the Asami Maki Ballet in Tokyo.

DENIS MALINKINE (Répétiteur), a native of Russia, graduated from the Bolshoi Ballet Academy. He soon joined the Moscow Classical Ballet in 1985 and participated in many of the company’s tours, including ones to the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan, among others. In 1990 he joined the National Ballet of Portugal. In 1993, Mr. Malinkine was invited by Christopher Gable to join England’s Northern Ballet Theatre. As a principal he created the title role in the landmark production of Dracula by Michael Pink and Christopher Gable, and the roles of Captain Phoebus in Pink’s Hunchback of Notre Dame and Albrecht in Northern Ballet Theatre’s Giselle. He expanded this experience in the genre of Dance Drama in productions of Romeo & Juliet, Christmas Carol, Cinderella, Swan Lake, The Brontes and Carmen.  Mr. Malinkine has worked with Atlanta Ballet since 1999 where he created the role of Romeo in Michael Pink’s Romeo & Juliet. During his career he has appeared in many classical ballet performances, and in productions by George Balanchine, Alberto Alonso, Maurice Bejart, Roland Petit, Kenneth MacMillan, Jose Lemon, Didi Veldman, Ben Stevenson, Lila York, Gillian Linn  and many others.  Mr. Malinkine has acted as guest artist and assistant to Mr. Pink in performing and remounting his works for Atlanta Ballet, Boston Ballet, Colorado Ballet, Ballet Internationale and the Norwegian National Ballet. He also assisted John McFall in his work for Peter Pan with Ballet Internationale. Since 2003, Mr. Malinkine has been working as Ballet Master with Milwaukee Ballet .

Dracula (1996)

(TWB 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 Bram Stoker’s  haunting story.

 

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

Original Director: Christopher Gable

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

ABOUT THE WASHINGTON BALLET

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.

, , , , , , ,

2 Responses to “THE WASHINGTON BALLET PRESENTS DRACULA”

  1. Ballet News Says:

    Angelia Nunley said : I would really love to see this !!!

  2. Ballet News Says:

    Mari Batlle Sabina said : How I wish I could see this!!!! Must be impressive