|| Boston Common
|| April 29, 2013
|| Jessica Laniewski
After a successful season that saw the re-launch of The Nutcracker, the Boston Ballet continues its creative streak with Chroma (May 2-12). Here, artistic director Mikko Nissinen speaks to Boston Common about this exciting ballet.
This program has three parts to it, with Chroma in the middle. How did you seize on this idea?
MIKKO NISSINEN: I made the program to be a progression, and Chroma is sandwiched between two amazing George Balanchine ballets. Serenade is the first ballet he did in America and is about the transformation of a woman into a dancer. It is so striking and one of the most romantic things you've ever seen. And from Serenade we move to Chroma, which is a difficult, acrobatic piece. The last piece, Symphony in C, is a four-part, 'white tutu' ballet. Balanchine wrote the piece when he was 17-years-old. It is difficult not to love. The finale culminates with the dancers from all the pieces coming together, and it is like a beehive on stage.
Where was Chroma first performed?
MN: Chroma was commissioned by The Royal Ballet in London from choreographer Wayne McGregor, who has his own studio in the city where he continues his innovative work. The Royal Ballet chose to make him its first non-classic resident choreographer. I am excited to have him here in Boston.
How many dancers will be in the program?
MN: Altogether we will have over 70 dancers in the program. There are 65 just in the last piece.
How long have you worked to get Chroma to Boston?
MN: Chroma has been on my mind for two or three years. Wayne and I were so keen to make it happen. I found that with Chroma he was able to leave just the essence of it with the audience. It is a little bit like Michelangelo when he looks at the big piece of marble and takes the unnecessary stone out. Wayne was able to make the choreography to the point. It is always a sensation for the audience.
Will McGregor be in Boston for the run of the show?
MN: He will be here prior to the opening of the show to work with the dancers, and then will stay for the first couple of shows.
The Ballet has performed a show-stopping version of The Nutcracker this season, as well as Sleeping Beauty and All Kylian. How do you think audiences will react to this program?
MN: I think the Boston audience will love it. This is not a difficult thing to love. The first and last ballets are more obvious, and Chroma is more strikingly emotional. I am trying to give our audience a mixed diet of dance. They really embraced the All Kylian program. I am very aware that if we step into the terrain that is much more unknown, we need something to balance that out. We are saying the art form of dance is evolving and the parameters are being pushed. I want to be the ballet company of the future.
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