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GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S CENTER FOR THE ARTS PRESENTS THE JOFFREY BALLET   “AMERICAN LEGENDS” Friday, March 7, 2014 at 8 p.m.   “BODY & SOUL” Saturday, March 8, 2014 at 8 p.m.

February 5, 2014
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GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S CENTER FOR THE ARTS

PRESENTS

THE JOFFREY BALLET

 

“AMERICAN LEGENDS”

Friday, March 7, 2014 at 8 p.m.

 

“BODY & SOUL”

Saturday, March 8, 2014 at 8 p.m.

 

FAIRFAX, Va., Feb. 5, 2014 – One of the world’s foremost dance companies brings two distinctive evenings of contemporary ballet to Fairfax when The Joffrey Ballet appears at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts, with “American Legends” on Friday, March 7, 2014 at 8 p.m. and “Body & Soul” on Saturday, March 8, 2014 at 8 p.m. A pre-performance discussion, free to ticketholders, will be held 45 minutes prior to each performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III and is sponsored by the Friends of the Center for the Arts.

“American Legends” is an exquisite program of contemporary works that includes Jerome Robbins’ exuberant “Interplay.” Called “exhilarating” by The New York Times, this quintessentially American work from 1945 conveys “the wonderful playfulness and unfettered curiosity of youth,” and is set to music by Morton Gould. Also on the program is Twyla Tharp’s popular “Nine Sinatra Songs,” which premiered in 1982 and is set to the music of Ol’ Blue Eyes himself. Dubbed “an indisputable winner” by The New York Times, this American classic “captures the dancing of the 1950s through variously sultry, comic and glamorous vignettes,” and features costumes by Oscar de la Renta. The program also features Stanton Welch’s virtuosic “Son of Chamber Symphony,” which premiered in 2012 and is set to music by John Adams. Also on the program is Christopher Wheeldon’s tender pas de deux from “After the Rain,” set to music by Arvo Pärt.

A dazzling evening of contemporary ballet, “Body & Soul” features Yuri Possokhov’s “Bells,” which premiered in 2011 and is set to seven piano compositions by Rachmaninoff. The Chicago Tribune said, “[‘Bells’] mixes classic form with seething intensity … Possokhov embraces an often exhilarating tradition only to tease and tickle it whenever the mood strikes.” The Joffrey’s Artistic Director Ashley C. Wheater commissioned the ballet with a desire for a work “that would give The Joffrey dancers a chance to use their ballet-school technique with all its muscle and soul.” The company also performs Chicagoan Brock Clawson’s “Crossing Ashland,” which will receive its company premiere in February 2014. Milwaukee Magazine called the work, which features dancers in street clothes creating a vision of pedestrians passing each other on the street, “a physically charged and thoroughly modern take on the power of desire, both expressed and repressed.” The program also features Twyla Tharp’s “Nine Sinatra Songs.”

“Balletgoing rarely gets more rewarding and [The Joffrey] dancers reach for – and often grasp – new levels of achievement.” (Chicago Tribune) Hailed as “America’s Company of Firsts,” The Joffrey Ballet’s extensive list of “firsts” for American dance companies includes being the first to perform at the White House; the first to appear on television; the first to visit Russia; the first to experiment with multi-media; the first to commission a rock ‘n’ roll ballet; the first to appear on the cover TIME Magazine; and the first to have had a major motion picture based on it, Robert Altman’s “The Company.” Founded in 1956, the Chicago-based company proudly reflects and represents the diversity of America through its company, audiences and its expansive repertoire, which encompasses major story ballets, reconstructions of masterpieces and contemporary works. The Joffrey Ballet has been led by founder Robert Joffrey and celebrated choreographer Gerald Arpino; since 2007, the company has thrived under the leadership of its renowned artistic director, Ashley C. Wheater, who previously danced with Royal Ballet, London Festival Ballet, Australian Ballet, San Francisco Ballet and The Joffrey Ballet.

 

 

Tickets for THE JOFFREY BALLET are $50, $42 and $25 for each performance. Youth Discount: tickets are half price for youth through grade 12. Visit the box office (open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) or charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit cfa.gmu.edu. The Center for the Arts complex is located on George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123. Paid parking is located in the Mason Pond Parking Deck adjacent the Concert Hall and FREE parking is located in university Lot K. For more information, please visit cfa.gmu.edu. Like us on Facebook at Facebook.com/gmucfa and follow us on Twitter and Instagram at @GMU_CFA.

 

About Great Performances at Mason

Great Performances at Mason is a program of George Mason University's Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). CVPA provides an academic environment in which the arts are explored as individual disciplines and interdisciplinary forms that strengthen one another. The college prepares students for careers as creators, performers, teachers, scholars, arts leaders and arts entrepreneurs. Understanding that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the college, welcomes a variety of professional and world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Students have the opportunity to perform, create and exhibit their work in a wide variety of public venues including a 2,000-seat Concert Hall. CVPA is home to the Schools of Music, Dance, Art and Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs.

 

About George Mason University

George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University – Where Innovation Is Tradition.