American Ballet Theatre will travel to Oman this fall to perform in the inaugural season of the Royal Opera House Muscat, the company will announce Wednesday. ABT’s performances will be the first by an American arts organization at the new venue, the first of its kind in the Islamic nation.
The construction of the opera house, which seats about 1,100 people, was a project of the sultan of Oman, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. “He committed himself to modernizing Oman, opening to the West and building institutions,” said Mustapha Tlili, founder and director of NYU’s Center for Dialogues, which was founded after Sept. 11, 2001, to encourage positive interaction with the Islamic world.
ABT executive director Rachel Moore said the company will present “Don Quixote” (from Oct. 26-28) because the venue’s programmers had requested the comedic ballet. “It’s a very accessible ballet, and the humor is universal,” she said.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.