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Evening of ballet and dance is shaping up to be special

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The Bermuda Civic Ballet presents ‘Summer Selections 2011’ at City Hall theatre this weekend, and all indications are that dance aficionados are in for a special treat.

The Civic has long enjoyed a reputation for providing memorable dance evenings, and this year’s offering promises to be no exception.

The 13-item programme will feature both ballet and modern dance, and will be performed by local and overseas students of the Civic Ballet Summer School and visiting artists.

Six of the pieces have been choreographed by Bermudians: Dominique Anderson, Eric Bean Jr, Sophia Cannonier, Vanessa Guishard, Jelani Veney, and Coral Waddell, who is Civic’s artistic director.

The programme will open with ‘Connecting Carmen’, choreographed by American Shawn Mahoney, whom many will remember for his quicksilver performance as Puck in the Civic’s open-air presentation of ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ in the grounds of Government House some years ago. His pas de deux will be performed by Bermudian James Waddell, who recently graduated from the Central School of Ballet in London, England, and visiting dancer Louise Edmond.

Mr Mahoney is on the faculty of Emerson College in Boston where he teaches ballet and dance composition. He is a sought-after mentor for emerging choreographers in both classical ballet and contemporary dance and has been teaching ballet at Civic’s summer ballet school this summer.

He will also dance the role of God in ‘Creation’, choreographed by Vanessa Guishard, while six dancers will perform ‘Ladies in Waiting’ to his choreography.

Sophia Cannonier is the soloist in ‘The Golden Thread’, which she jointly choreographed with Mrs Waddell, while professional dancer/choreographer Eric Bean Jr choreographed ‘JoGo’ (The Game) for six dancers. Jelani Veney, a recent graduate of Ryerson Theatre School’s dance performance programme, returned home to choreograph the modern dance, ‘Evanescent Lullaby’, and is also dancing in Dominique Anderson’s ‘I’ll Be With You’.

‘Scenes from a Wedding The Engagement’ will be danced by Zoe Arshamian and Mr Waddell to choreography created by Christopher Murray for ‘Ballet Central 2011’ the Central School of Ballet’s traditional showcase tour around England featuring the graduating students of 2011.

Miss Arshamian will be the soloist in Liam Scarlett’s ‘Capriccio’, while Remi Laudat will be the soloist in excerpts from Robert North’s ‘Troy Games’.

The programme will also include ‘The City’, choreographed by Pascal Rioult, and first performed in New York City in January 2010. Jeppe Jakobsen will dance the Prince Florimund solo from Act 2 of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ to Shawn Mahoney’s choreography. Mr Jakobson, and fellow male dancer Mr Laudat, will be appearing in Bermuda for the first time.

The programme finale, ‘Proud to be a Bermudian’, has been choreographed by Mrs Waddell especially for the show, and will be danced to the music of Johnny Woolridge on the CD of the same name.

“I was listening to the music and I thought it would be really good to finish the whole show with it. It is such a positive piece of music, and it is light,” Mrs Waddell said. “It will be danced by the whole company, including the foreign students.”

Among the visiting students are some of Mr Waddell’s fellow dancers from the Central School of Ballet, while two Kim Tassie Kreipe, a student at Frankfurt University in Germany, and Christine Sikking from the US, have combined dancing with visiting their grandparents.

Behind the scenes, Mrs Waddell and Elsie Patterson have designed all but one of the costumes, which were then made by Mrs Patterson with some assistance from Helle Patterson; John Waddell is the technical coordinator.

Performances are on August 5 and 6, with a curtain time of 8pm. Tickets (adults $30, children under 16 $10) are available from 11am to 2pm at City Hall box office until August 6 (telephone 295-2313).

The Bermuda Civic Ballet, a non-profit organisation, registered charity, and limited liability company, was founded by Madame Patricia Deane-Gray. The Company was formed in 1972, and provides an opportunity for trained dancers and advanced students to perform at a semi-professional level, and work with visiting and local choreographers and professional dancers. The summer school is part of its programme.

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Published August 04, 2011 at 7:00 am (Updated August 03, 2011 at 8:33 pm)

Evening of ballet and dance is shaping up to be special

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