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Dance Creations: Expect the Unexpected

The Colorado Ballet ends its season with a bang, with final performances this weekend of two world premieres and a seasonal tip of the hat to St. Patrick's Day and all things Celtic.

De Profundis by Jessica Lang, Music by Arvo Pärt, Costumes by Elena Comendador
De Profundis by Jessica Lang,
Music by Arvo Pärt,
Costumes by Elena Comendador
Photo: Terry Shapiro
Following up on last year's heralded work, "From Foreign Lands and People," is Jessica Lang's "De Profundis," an abstract 12-member ensemble piece set to the haunting spiritual music of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. From it's stunning opening image of an angelic body in diaphanous robes descending to earth to its mirror image of ascension at the end, Lang's piece grabs us with its flowing beauty and reverential expressions, covering the full gamut of emotions from anguish and melancholy to soulful aspirations.

Second Exposure by Darrell Grand Moultrie, Original Music by Ricardo Romaneiro, Costumes by Christine Joly de Lotbiniere
Second Exposure by Darrell Grand Moultrie,
Original Music by Ricardo Romaneiro,
Costumes by Christine Joly de Lotbiniere
Photo: Terry Shapiro
Darrell Grand Moultrie, whose colorful, Latin jazz-inspired "Vital Sensations" was a hit here in its 2005 premiere, debuts his blood-pumping "Second Exposure," a percussive progression of exuberant athletic moves, intricate interweaving, and surprising challenges. Lloyd Sobel's lighting designs, subtle and gauzy in Lang's piece, is intense and full of inventive contrasts here.

Celts by Lila York, Traditional music, Costumes by Tunji Dada
Celts by Lila York
Photo: Terry Shapiro
Finally, the Colorado Ballet premiere of Lila York's "Celts," begins with traditional Irish step-dancing and line dances, explores the genre's primitive roots, riffs on its modern extrapolations, and returns to a celebration of its traditional melodies. Koichi Kubo's whirlwind solos are breathtaking.

Once again, the company's depth of talent and breadth of repertoire impresses, concluding a season of classic, children's, and cutting-edge offerings sure to broaden the subscriber base and bring financial stability while expanding the opportunities for the resident talent to continue to grow.

The Colorado Ballet's production of Dance Creations: Expect the Unexpected runs through March 25th at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. 303-837-8888 or www.coloradoballet.com.

 

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