Casting for American Ballet Theatre's 2022 Fall season has been announced today by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie.
Principal Dancers for the 2022 Fall season include Joo Won Ahn, Aran Bell, Isabella Boylston, Skylar Brandt, Daniel Camargo, Herman Cornejo, Thomas Forster, Catherine Hurlin, Gillian Murphy, Calvin Royal III, Hee Seo, Christine Shevchenko, Cory Stearns, Devon Teuscher, Cassandra Trenary, James Whiteside, and Roman Zhurbin.
The 2022 Fall season will open on Thursday 20 October with Whipped Cream, led by Christine Shevchenko making her debut as Princess Tea Flower, Calvin Royal III as Prince Coffee, Skylar Brandt as Princess Praline, and Jonathan Klein as The Boy. On Friday 21 October, Zimmi Coker will debut as Princess Praline, dancing alongside Devon Teuscher as Princess Tea Flower and Cory Stearns as Prince Coffee. Breanne Granlund will debut the role of Princess Praline at the Saturday matinee performance on 22 October, with Isabella Boylston as Princess Tea Flower and James Whiteside as Prince Coffee.
Choreographed by ABT Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky, the ballet features scenery and costumes by artist Mark Ryden and lighting by Brad Fields. Whipped Cream has a libretto and score by Richard Strauss and is based on the two-act ballet originally created as Schlagobers, which premiered at the Vienna State Opera in 1924. Ratmansky's production received its World Premiere by ABT on 15 March 2017 at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California danced by Daniil Simkin (The Boy), Stella Abrera (Princess Tea Flower), David Hallberg (Prince Coffee), and Sarah Lane (Princess Praline). Whipped Cream will be given five performances through Sunday 23 October.
ABT's Fall season continues on Wednesday 26 October with the return of Frederick Ashton's The Dream, led by Gillian Murphy as Titania, Cory Stearns as Oberon, and Herman Cornejo as Puck. The roles of Titania and Oberon will be danced for the first time by Cassandra Trenary and Daniel Camargo on Saturday evening, 29 October.
The Dream received its World Premiere by The Royal Ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London on 2 April 1964, danced by Antoinette Sibley as Titania, Anthony Dowell as Oberon, and Keith Martin as Puck. American Ballet Theatre's first-ever performance of The Dream was at the Metropolitan Opera House, New York on 24 May 2002, danced by Alessandra Ferri as Titania, Ethan Stiefel as Oberon, and Herman Cornejo as Puck. ABT last performed The Dream in 2014.
Alexei Ratmansky's The Seasons will also return on the evening of Wednesday 26 October, featuring Isabella Boylston and Thomas Forster in the central roles. Hee Seo and Joo Won Ahn will make their debuts in the leading roles on Saturday 29 October.
Set to a score of the same name by Alexander Glazunov, The Seasons features costumes by Robert Perdziola and lighting by Mark Stanley. Created to commemorate Ratmansky's 10th anniversary as ABT Artist in Residence, the ballet received its World Premiere on 20 May 2019 at the Metropolitan Opera House.
The 2022 Fall Gala performance on Thursday 7 October will be highlighted by the World Premiere of Lifted by Christopher Rudd. Designed to highlight, amplify, and celebrate Black creative voices, Lifted will be performed by Erica Lall, Courtney Lavine, Calvin Royal III, Gabe Stone Shayer, Jose Sebastian, and Melvin Lawovi. The ballet will be set to music by Kennedy Center Composer-in-Residence Carlos Simon, with Roderick Cox making his debut as Guest Conductor with ABT. The work will feature costumes by New York-based creative director and fashion designer Carly Cushnie, sets by Carlos Soto, lighting by Alan Edwards, and dramaturgy by Phaedra Scott. Sarah Lozoff will serve as Intimacy Director.
The Fall Gala program will also highlight the Company in Sinfonietta, featuring many of ABT's Principal Dancers and Soloists. Jiří Kylián's Sinfonietta is set to music by Leoš Janáček, and features scenery and costumes by Walter Nobbe and lighting by Kees Tjebbes. The ballet was given its World Premiere in Charleston, South Carolina by the Nederlands Dans Theater on 9 June 1978, and received its ABT Premiere at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on 25 January 1991. Sinfonietta will be staged for ABT by Roslyn Anderson and Glenn Edgerton.
Children's Songs Dance
Jessica Lang's Children's Songs Dance will feature performances by some of the newest members of the Company on Friday 28 October and Saturday 29 October. Set to selections from Children's Songs by the late American jazz composer Chick Corea, the ballet was created on ABT Studio Company in January 2020 during a residency at The Pocantico Center in Tarrytown, New York. The work was first seen on screen as part of the ABT Studio Company Spring Festival, a program of filmed performances that aired online in June 2021. The ballet received its main Company Premiere on 9 August 2022 as part of Lincoln Center's BAAND Together Dance Festival. This production of Children's Songs Dance for the 2022 Fall season will feature new costumes by Jillian Lewis and lighting by Nicole Pearce.
Tickets for American Ballet Theatre's 2022 Fall season, starting at $30, are available from 6 September at 12:00 noon.
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.