Miami City Ballet
with the Naples Philharmonic
Artis—Naples Dance Series
Gary Sheldon, conductor
Stravinsky/Balanchine — Stravinsky Violin Concerto
Schubert/Taylor — Mercuric Tidings
Rodgers/Balanchine — Slaughter on Tenth Avenue
In this first of two programs in Hayes Hall this season, Miami City Ballet performs two works by George Balanchine, celebrating the cutting-edge music of Stravinsky as well as Richard Rodgers’ tantalizing Broadway score. The company also honors Paul Taylor in performing one of the late choreographer’s greatest works set to music by Franz Schubert.
Program One starts with Stravinsky’s Violin Concerto. Stravinsky’s music provided the perfect platform for Balanchine to push his stylistic experiments. This piece features all-out dancing and expression with pure technique. In Mercuric Tidings, the tribute to Paul Taylor, MCB performs a celebration of “body in motion” in an “exhilarating, blisteringly fast dance,” according to the Miami Herald. And the program culminates with Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, a hilarious parody of hijinks and high kicks, gangsters and cops, in a ballet about the tap dancer and the impossible stripper he falls in love with. But watch out — her jealous boyfriend is the brutal Big Boss, and he’s hiding in the theater waiting for the moment to pull the trigger on the hoofer… will the police nab him in time?
Prelude at 7pm
Arrive early to enjoy the Hayes Hall Galleries and light fare at the cafe. The doors to Hayes Hall open 90 minutes prior to this performance.
Miami City Ballet
Miami City Ballet
Described by The New York Times as “an exceptional troupe, by Balanchine standards, anywhere in the world,” Miami City Ballet (MCB) is led by Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez and is considered a leader in the field — nurturing new choreographic voices, creating innovative collaborations and opening new avenues of inclusivity within classical ballet.
Founded in 1985 by Miami philanthropist Toby Lerner Ansin and Founding Artistic Director and ballet legend Edward Villella, MCB is universally admired as one of the world’s preeminent interpreters of the choreography of George Balanchine. Its repertory of more than 100 ballets, including 12 world premieres, was built upon the Balanchine repertory, style and technique and then expanded to include beloved classical works of importance and exciting new choreography by contemporary and ground-breaking artists. MCB maintains annual seasons in Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Broward and Collier Counties, serving more than 132,000 patrons in South Florida through four diverse repertory programs; the treasured Christmas fairytale, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker®; and an expansive national touring program. MCB has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada and Europe and its 2016 debut at Lincoln Center’s David H. Koch Theater was hailed by the national press as a resounding success. The New York Times’ Alastair Macaulay wrote, “Of all the ballet troupes who have visited the Koch in recent years, none looks so truly and completely a company.”
Gary Sheldon returns for his 10th season as principal conductor for Miami City Ballet. He previously held positions with San Francisco Ballet, Atlanta Ballet and BalletMet. He has guest conducted for numerous ballet companies throughout the United States, Canada and Europe, as well as at the Aspen Music Festival, Fairy House Festival at Artpark, Grant Park Music Festival, Spoleto Festival USA, Meadow Brook Amphitheatre and Tanglewood Music Festival.
Sheldon was a prizewinner in the BBC’s Rupert Foundation Conducting Competition and the American Symphony Orchestra’s Leopold Stokowski Conducting Competition, and he recently won top prize for orchestral conducting in The American Prize in Conducting competition. Sheldon currently holds positions with the Lancaster Festival in Ohio (artistic director) and The Festival at Sandpoint in Idaho (principal conductor). He is a native of Bay Shore, New York, and a graduate of The Juilliard School and Institut de Hautes Études Musicales in Montreux, Switzerland.