Ballet Stars of New York return for sixth year
For the sixth consecutive year, the fast-growing University of South Carolina Dance Program will bring the talents of the New York City Ballet to Columbia for its “Ballet Stars of New York” concert, March 19 at 7 p.m. at the Koger Center for the Arts.
Tickets are $35 for orchestra seats, $30 for first balcony, $25 for second balcony and $15 for students. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Carolina Coliseum box office at 777-5112. Or, charge by phone at 251-2222.
Performing signature works of the New York City Ballet repertory in concert with university dancers will be NYCB dancers Sara Mearns, a Columbia native who is earning national reviews for her lead role in “Swan Lake,” Megan Fairchild, Abi Stafford, Charles Askegard and brothers Jared and Tyler Angle.
Two classic works by choreographer George Balanchine are on the program: the vigorous “Allegro Brillante,” set to the music of Tchaikovsky, and the lively “Western Symphony,” which is performed to Broadway legend Hershy Kay. The program will also include “In the Night,” a romantic work by ballet and Broadway choreographer Jerome Robbins.
NYC Ballet pianist Cameron Grant will be featured as solo pianist for “In the Night” and will perform with the USC Symphony, under the direction of Dr. Donald Portnoy, in “Allegro Brillante.” The symphony will also provide the accompaniment for “Western Symphony.”
The University of South Carolina’s Dance Program is the only collegiate-level group working closely with the NYC Ballet. Additionally, the USC Dance Program is among a select group of colleges granted the rights to perform the works of NYC Ballet founder and “father of American ballet” George Balanchine.
The university’s Dance Program has experienced exponential growth in the last six years, which New York City Ballet soloist Stacey Calvert says can be attributed in part to the “Ballet Stars” concerts.
“This concert has become a major recruiting tool for the program,” she said. “The program has grown by leaps and bounds.”
Since the first “Ballet Stars” concert, the Dance Program has added a major with concentrations in performance/choreography and dance education, which boasts 90 auditioned dancers, making it one of the fastest-growing programs in the Southeast. The program moved into new studio space in 2009.
For more information on the concert, contact Kevin Bush in the department of theatre and dance at 803-777-9353.