MY TUTUS ARE READY: Ballet Manila Revisits Timeless Tales with the Revenge of the Classics

I am a FRUSTRATED BALLERINA. And I know most of you (girls) are! Right? I’ve always admired dancers who move gracefully on stage, as if they live in another world and era where music is life and passion translates to movement. So when I got invites to ballet shows and performances, I always, ALWAYS say YES.

Last July 21, I was given the chance to watch snippets of the country’s premier ballet company, Ballet Manila’s, Revenge of the Classic show. This new season which is schedule to open on August 19,  will feature three classics and one contemporary piece that has won the hearts of many Filipinos.

“Nothing beats the classics. There’s something about classical tales and pieces that is just so magical that they stay in your memory forever,” shares Prima Ballerina and Ballet Manila’s Artistic Director and CEO, Lisa Macuja-Elizalde. “Technically speaking, you can’t cheat when you’re doing the classics; there’s just no way. Revenge of the Classics invokes the same spirit that guided us when we founded the company in 1995. My Russian mentor, Tatiana Udalenkova, often reminded me that every season should have a classical production because it is in doing the classics that the company becomes strong. Our 21st season will showcase the power and grace that enable our ballerinas and danseurs to perform these extremely difficult classical ballet roles.”

EDSA

The first performance was an excerpt from Rebel: EDSA 30

Choreographed by British choreographer Martin Lawrance and featuring music from Spartacus by world-renowned Armenian composer, Aram Khachaturian, this modern classic gained much traction when it debuted in February because of its historical relevance and its touching combination of nationalistic music and strong choreography. Similar to when it was last staged, this season’s production of Rebel: EDSA 30 will feature Joanna Ampil as the voice of Inang Bayan, and performances by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of Maestro Gerard Salonga. Rebel: EDSA 30 will be shown at the Aliw Theater on the following dates and time: August 19, 20, and 27 at 8:00 p.m. and August 21 and 28 at 3:00 p.m.

It was a piece that I can literally relate with. It’s about the country, the struggles of our government and our longing for democracy. It is about us.

SWAN

The second piece is entitled The Swan, The Fairy and The Princess.

In October, the dance company will stage The Swan, The Fairy and The Princess, a production that showcases excerpts from three of the most celebrated works of master composer Peter Tschaikovsky, who has written some of the world’s most memorable and timeless ballet scores—Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and The Sleeping Beauty. Scores for this ballet will be performed by no less than the Manila Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Alexander Vikulov. Featuring performances by Kremlin Ballet Theater’s premier danseur, Mikhail Martynyuk, and Miguel Faustmann, who will assume the role of Peter Tchaikovsky, The Swan, The Fairy and The Princess promises a magical experience unlike any other. Show schedules are: October 14 & 15 at 8:00 p.m. and October 16 at 3:00 p.m.

CINDERELLA

The third piece is a personal fave – Cinderella.

A timeless tale and arguably one of the most loved stories of all time, Cinderella, starts its run on November 25. This enduring classic sets the stage for the world premiere of Osias Barroso and Lisa Macuja-Elizalde’s first major choreographic work together. With a production that promises to stay true to the animated feature that generations of young girls and boys loved, this re-telling is perfect for anyone who is on the search for a little bit of extra magic to usher in the holiday season. Show dates for Cinderella at the Aliw Theater are as follows: November 25, 26 and December 3 at 8:00 p.m. and November 27 and December 4 at 3:00 p.m.

DON QUIJOTE

DON QUIJOTE 2

And finally, the last piece is Don Quixote.

A story from the famous novel by Miguel De Cervantes come alive as the lively ballet follows the adventures of the chivalry-obsessed Don Quixote, his faithful servant, Sancho Panzo, and young lovers, Kitri and Basilio. Set in Barcelona, the ballet allows everyone a glimpse of the colorful, vibrant, and inherently romantic Spanish culture. Mikhail Martynyuk, principal danseur of the Kremlin Ballet, once again joins Ballet Manila for this classic. Don Quixote will be shown at the Aliw Theater this February 24 & 25, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. and February 26 at 3:00 p.m.

All shows are at the Aliw Theater in Pasay City.

IMG_9475

The excerpt performances were such a pleasure to watch and I enjoyed everything up until the mini press conference led by the prima ballerina herself, Lisa Macuja (big fan here!). Sadly, ballet, though prestigious, isn’t so popular here in our country. I am just hoping that the present government would support our performing arts (in terms of funds and effort) especially ballet because certainly, we have world class talents waiting to be unleashed.

Make sure you watch all the shows because when you subscribe to all three, you get season tickets at 50% off!

For more information about the shows, including ticket prices and schedules, you may visit www.balletmanila.com.ph or follow Ballet Manila on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Tickets are also available through all Ticketworld outlets. Please call 891 9999 or visit www.ticketworld.com.ph, for more information. In addition, those who are planning to watch all the shows may take advantage of the company’s Season Subscription Programs, which offer up to 50% discount on ticket prices. For more information, you may visit www.ticketworld.com.ph/balletmanila/Online/  and click on ‘View Details’ under ‘Season Subscription Program’.

PS: My Tutus are ready! I’m having a ballet class soon so watch out for the blog. Hihi!

About Ballet Manila

Founded in 1995 by Prima Ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and Osias Barroso, Ballet Manila is the country’s premier classical dance company. With the mission of connecting both ballet and the people, the company, which puts education at the forefront of its priorities, is well-known as the only Philippine dance company to adopt and strictly adhere to the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet style of dancing, which is well-regarded the world over as the most disciplined and technically-superior style. The company currently has 65 artists under its wing, all of whom have been trained in the Vaganova Academy style of dancing. The company boasts of a solid repertoire that consists of some of the most technically challenging and timeless ballet favorites.

Follow Ballet Manila on Instagram for more details.

2 Comments

  1. Princesss Arra N. Villafania

    15th Aug 2016 - 5:15 am

    Frustrated ballerina here! ?

    • shai habon

      15th Aug 2016 - 1:33 pm

      Me too! Hehe 🙂

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