Lisa Macuja-Elizalde, CEO and Artistic Director of Ballet Manila said it all when she uttered the words ““Ballet Manila is entering a new age.”. These words acknowledge that Ballet Manila fully understands the importance of keeping up with the times while still adhering to the Vaganova technique and Russian style of dancing for which the premiere classical dance company is widely known for. In its 22nd Performance Season called Flights of Fantasy, Ballet Manila presents two classic tales—one Filipino and one foreign, plus Lisa’ second full-length choreography work and another installment of a show that provides an interesting mix of classical ballet and modern pop music.
Ibong Adarna, one of the two original productions mentioned by Lisa, will open the 22nd performance season this August. Choreographed by the one of the company’s principal dancers and multi-awarded choreographer, Gerardo Francisco, the show will bring to life the magical kingdom of Berbanya with modern production techniques, flying sequences, and impressive routines that can rival even those of the most well-known classical pieces. It will feature Gia Macuja Atchison, a West End star, as the voice of Ibong Adarna, and will also showcase music by Diwa de Leon, set and costume design by Make It Happen Workshop, and script by Angela Blardony Ureta.
Ibong Adarna makes its world premiere on August 26 at 6 PM. Other show dates are: September 2 at 6:00 PM and on August 27 and September 3 at 3:00 PM.
Following Ibong Adarna in October is one of the world’s most enduring classical romantic ballets—Swan Lake. Featuring music from master composer Peter Tchaikovsky, the production is a showcase of the company’s commitment to have at least one classical ballet in its repertoire every season—so as to uphold its Vaganova Academy roots. For its version of Swan Lake, Ballet Manila’s production features the original Lev Ivanov choreography for the white acts and a brand-new set design by Miguel Faustmann. It will also make use of new costumes created by fashion designer Michael Miguel and live accompaniment from the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Alexander Vikulov of Russia’s Marinsky Theater.
Swan Lake goes on stage on the following dates: October 7 and October 14 at 6:00 PM and October 8 and October 15 at 3:00 PM.
Come November, the company will stage its second original production this season, and Lisa Macuja-Elizalde’s second full-length choreography work—Snow White. Aimed at making the holiday season more magical for everyone, Ballet Manila promises to bring everyone a heartwarming take to the classic tale.
The Snow White world premiere is set for November 25 at 6:00 PM. Other show dates are December 2 at 6:00 PM, and November 26 and December 3 at 3:00 PM.
Ballets & Ballads
And to close Flights of Fantasy, Ballet Manila will stage another installment of its widely-popular Ballets & Ballads. Happening on February 2018, this edition will feature live music by the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra. In addition to the ABS-CBN Philharmonic Orchestra, Ballet & Ballads will also premiere British choreographer Martin Lawrance’s Aria. Lawrance has collaborated with Ballet Manila many times in the recent past, most notably in the the highly-acclaimed original, Rebel.
You can catch Ballet & Ballads on the following dates: February 10 and 17, 2018 at 6:00 PM, and February 11 and 18, 2018 at 3:00 PM.
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’.
I feel bad that I missed the preview of Ballet Manila’s Flights of Fantasy due to my work schedule. I am only comforted with the thought that I still have the chance to see all these wonderful shows in their full version in the coming months. Can’t wait.