Save the Date!

Mark your Calendars!

February at Ballet Fantastique has some great outings for you and your loved ones! Get ready to hit the town and celebrate.

Tales from the Floating World

Floating Banner

Photo: Reathel Geary

Want to come see BFan’s performance inspired by the haunting and powerful music of Portland Taiko and live koto player Mitsuki Dazai? This performance will be outstanding and filled with adventure, romance, and the supernatural!

Performance Dates

Friday Feb 7 @ 7:30pm

Saturday Feb 8 @ 7:30pm

Sunday Feb 9 @ 2:30pm

Soreng Theater, Hult Center

One Eugene Center

Eugene, OR 97401

Cooking with the Choreographers

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Want to spend the night experiencing the Caribbean from the comforts of Eugene? You and your V-Day date will get a chance to experience food from the Caribbean and see some dancing! Don’t miss this one-night event!

Date

Sunday Feb 16 @ 5pm

Party Downtown

55 W Broadway, Eugene, OR 97401

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ZORRO: The Ballet Recap

“This ballet was big, bold and beautiful” said Gwen Curran from The Register Guard. “The standing ovation at the end said it best: This is another hit for Ballet Fantastique.”

After long nights of rehearsal, hard work, and much needed volunteers, sponsors, and supporters, ZORRO: The Ballet was a wonderful success! With live music from the band Incendio, and violinist virtuoso Kim Angelis, Ballet Fantastique was able to create another dramatic, all-original ballet production!

Photo: Stephanie Urso

Photo: Stephanie Urso

Alex Notman, Arts Editor for Eugene Weekly, said, “The costumes and choreography were bright, innovative and fearless. All set against a music backdrop by the California-based Incendio Band, an exhilarating mix of Spanish guitar, violin and a dash of rock ‘n’ roll.”

You can read more about what she thought about Zorro here!

This past weekend was also the final days of our 2012 Oregon Ducks Liquid Lightning Football Helmet raffle valued at $1200! The drawing happened during the BFan cast party after the Sunday matinee. Congratulations Brandon Gray on being the raffle winner!

The Official 2012 Oregon Ducks Football Helmet was generously donated by Hydrographics Inc.

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We want to thank everyone who came to ZORRO: The Ballet and to those who contributed and helped make this production possible. We couldn’t have done it without you!

Excited to see more? Ballet Fantastique’s NEW LEGENDS season continues with Tales from the Floating World, a landmark contemporary ballet inspired by the powerful music of Portland Taiko, award-winning ensemble drummers. You won’t want to miss it!

photo: Reathel Geary

photo: Reathel Geary

You can still buy pro-rated, rest-of-season subscriptions! CLICK HERE!

You can get single Tales from the Floating World tickets here!

The Sounds of ZORRO® the Ballet!

Other than dramatic all-original choreography, witty storytelling, and playful dance theater, Ballet Fantastique is featuring live music at ZORRO® The Ballet premiere! BFan is so excited to be working with incredibly talented music artists, the LA-based Latin-fusion band Incendio and virtuoso violinist-composer Kim Angelis. In fact, we are so excited that we wanted to share a little bit of background with you about our special guest artists before attending the premiere!

Ballet Fantastique is happy to welcome back the LA-based Latin-fusion band Incendio (meaning “fire” in Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish). BFan last collaborated with them when the company toured to the Seattle area. Incendio just recently came across one of their many milestones: their eighth release– The Shape of Dreams.

Incendio

Incendio describes themselves as “instrumental world music.” Formed in 1999 by Jim Stubblefield, Jean-Pierre Durand and Liza Carbé, Incendio’s sound is a unique blend of classical, jazz, rock, flamenco, Celtic, and even bluegrass. Their music has been featured on The History Channel, A & E, Showtime and songs by its members have been used in video games like Far Cry 3 and popular movies like Bridesmaids. We are also excited to celebrate Incendio’s recent award for the 10th Annual Instrumental Album Vox Pop Winner!

BFan is also happy to be collaborating with the Astoria-based, virtuoso violinist-composer Kim Angelis! Performing her unique brand of gypsy-flamenco contemporary string music all across the world, it has been featured at the Olympics and World Cup gymnastics events, in film, and on television! She was also named the winner of the “ASCAP Plus” award… TWICE!

Kim Angelis

Kim’s music is built on a solid classical foundation, but the inspiration flows freely from the Romany Diaspora of Eastern Europe, Russia, and Spain. Her brilliant compositions showcase the beauty, power, and excitement of her playing.

The combination of these two incredibly talented musical artists are going to make ZORRO® the Ballet a premiere you won’t want to miss!

To purchase your tickets now, click here!

 

Special Student Outreach Matinee: Thursday, Oct. 17 at 10 am

$5 tickets for students made possible with support from the Oregon Cultural Trust.

Click here to register your students now!

Outreach experience info sheet>>

BFan’s Top 5 Reasons to Come to Zorro!

From the daredevil imaginations of Ballet Fantastique‘s acclaimed producer-choreographers Donna Marisa and Hannah Bontrager comes ZORRO: The Ballet, re-telling the famed legend of the masked Diego de la Vega. There are numerous reasons why someone should come see the show, but this week we asked some of our company dancers what their top five reasons to come see Zorro are! Read on to see what they had to say…

photo: Stephanie Urso

photo: Stephanie Urso

Hannah, executive director, said: “People should come to see Zorro because:

  1. It’s a really fun show and it covers a huge range of space, time and styles.
  2. The dancers are having so much fun– we get to be Native Americans and Spanish aristocrat girls in Barcelona. We even get to be folk dancers in what’s now LA. There’s so much fun that we’re having with showing different styles as actresses.
  3. It’s super high energy and the music is absolutely amazing. These bands are just like nothing you’ve ever heard.
  4. It’s all original choreography,
  5. all-original music and true to BFan’s style as ballet like you’ve never seen it before!”

Leanne, a company dancer, said:

  1. “The live music.
  2. BFan is the first ballet company to ever do Zorro.
  3. The costumes are amazing.
  4. The dancing is very different and covers many different genres.
  5. It is a really high-intensity show.”

Ashley said:

  1. “It would appeal to both men and women.
  2. We are the first ballet company to ever do Zorro.
  3. The costumes are extraordinary.
  4. The music is going to be epic!
  5. It is our first show with Fabio!”

Justin said:

  1. “Top notch music that you can’t help but groove to!
  2. Premiere show for our new company dancers!
  3. We’re the first ballet company to ever be given rights to do Zorro!
  4. Another set of amazing and eye catching costumes from our team of costume designers/builders.
  5. Helping to keep our art alive, even when major and highly talented companies around the country are collapsing.”

Lydia, one of BFan’s newest company dancers, said:

  1. “I think it is interesting because this is the untold story of Zorro. I just always assumed Zorro was just there and I didn’t know the reasoning behind it all. This is like part one of Zorro!
  2. This is my first show with Ballet Fantastique!
  3. I think it is cool that there is a Zorro corporation and we’ve had permission to perform it. I think that’s kind of a big deal!
  4. It’s the first of its kind!
  5. I think it will appeal to a lot of different types of people just because it has a lot of different versatility!”

Krislyn said:

  1. “The music is super awesome. I’m so excited to work with Incendio again. They are an amazing group to work with. The music is all very precise and makes it a lot easier for us to dance to. I’m super excited about the electric violin!
  2. The story of Zorro is a little different than the typical Zorro tale, so I think it will be fun for people to hear this story.
  3. The costumes are super beautiful and a lot more different than we’ve ever done before. I’ll have wings on my costume!
  4. Again with the story, I think a lot of different kinds of people with like it!
  5. It’s not a classical ballet, it is more temporary, and it will be a lot of fun!”

ZORRO® The Ballet premieres October 18-20 at the Hult Center. Click here to get your tickets now!

Our Holiday Gift Guide

Harvest Moon Photography Caitlin

Photo: BFan dancer Caitlin Christopher and Troupe Carnivale in “Seller of Dreams.” (Harvest Moon Photography; see more here)

It’s BFan Events Coordinator intern Kristen here.  Not sure what to get your loved one for the holidays this season? Look no further than your local contemporary ballet company, Ballet Fantastique for a gift that’s unique, fun, local, and a double-whammy…you get to give it now, and enjoy it later.  🙂

Here are my top five gift ideas to put a smile on pretty much anyone’s face:

  1. Tickets to The Misadventures of Casanova! Come see this new contemporary ballet premiere with lush costumes, decadent music, romance and intrigue making the way to the stage at the Hult center this coming February 2 and 3, 2013!  It’s two-in-one: holiday gift and Valentine’s event wrapped up in one.
  2. While you’re at it, you might want to consider making a bigger bang for your buck with a Ballet Fantastique Season Subscription for the rest of our 2012-2013: VENTURE lineup (The Misadventures of Casanova and Pride & Prejudice: A Parisian Jazz Ballet with live jazz!). Your pro-rated (read: discounted) season subscription will include tickets to the remaining two contemporary ballet premieres at the Hult Center, free Open Barre pass (for preview rehearsal/wine tasting reception at the City Center for Dance), additional savings from the community, and more VIP treatment!  BFan’s last three productions sold out, so a season subscription also guarantees that you’ll get seats.  These start at just $50 each, for all these goodies (and $24 for kids).  Read more about the perks and get ’em now here.
  3. Know someone who has always wanted to try something new—or who loved ballet and been wanting to get back into it?  Or been talking about whipping into shape as a new year’s resolution?  How about a Class Card for Ballet Fantastique’s hoppin’ Adult Drop-In Program?  Class times are convenient, class cards don’t expire for a whole year, and teacher Leanne Mizzoni from Washington, DC is rumored to be absolutely incredible.  Get a class card online for one, 10, or 20 classes and get the dance party started.
  4. Do you have a little one pulling on your heart strings? A daughter/son or niece/nephew? Try a gift certificate to our Young Dancer Program (ages 4+) or our Training Division (ages 7-preprofessional) as a gift.  Fill out this little form and Hannah or Emily will get back to you right away to get you outfitted with a pretty gift certificate to wrap up.
  5. Adopt a Dancer—give the gift of a scholarship to a young dancer giving him or her the opportunity to study professional dance right alongside his or her more privileged peers.  A certificate for your lucky recipient will outline the difference being made in the life of a youngster, thanks to you!

But above all, remember to enjoy this holiday season with the ones you love!  Happy holidays from our BFan family to yours.

—Kristen

The Magic of Cinderella: A Rock Opera Ballet

This past weekend, I attended the Ballet Fantastique original production of Cinderella: A Rock Opera Ballet set in 1964. This was the last performance I will see as an intern with Ballet Fantastique, and I could not be more sad. This show’s creativity and entertainment, though, has solidified my lifelong love of Ballet Fantastique.

In a word, Cinderella: A Rock Opera Ballet was amazing—I loved watching this traditional fairytale with its little (or big!) Bontrager twist. Mother-daughter team Hannah and Donna Bontrager chose the story of Cinderella to preform for their final show of the season but changed things up by setting the story in 1964. They selected a variety of 1960’s hits to be played live during the performances by the local group Shelley and Cal James and their band (created especially for Cinderella), Agents of Unity. The inclusion of live music is a signature of Ballet Fantastique, and for Cinderella, it helped to create a high level of energy that captivated me through out the show.  My favorite song was their rendition of  “Wild Thing,” to which Shelley added her own new melody.  By Donna and Hannah’s request, the song’s original length was stretched from 2.5 minutes to almost five, including dueling guitar solos played by band members Cal James (see photo) and Joe Weber.

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The two lead dancers in the performance were incredible. Ballet Fantastique company dancer Alanna Fisher played the role of Cinderella, and Fredrick Davis (from Dance Theater of Harlem) was cast as Prince Charming. Alanna and Fredrick had great chemistry as a duet and both possessed a special presence that entranced the crowd. Fredrick was in Eugene for only two weeks learning Donna and Hannah’s choreography, and appeared in nine out of the show’s fourteen pieces. But this limited preparation time (dancers usually have between 4–6 weeks to learn and rehearse original choreography before a performance) was not evident in his performance. He danced beautifully across the stage and captivated audiences with his artistry and presence.

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I spoke with Hannah about her experiences of working with Fredrick for this past show. “It was such an honor to work with a dancer of Fred’s caliber,” said Hannah. “He dove right into our original choreography and made it his own! What an exciting first for us to bring to Eugene audiences.”

I could not help but noticing the effect this show had on the rest of the audience. During intermission, fellow intern Ursi Wagner and I commented on how audience members young and old were singing songs and raving about the performance of the cast. The energy the dancers exuded was contagious.

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“I’ve never seen a ballet that had audiences out of their seats with excitement like Ballet Fantastique’s Cinderella,” said Ursi. “The live music and 60s inspired dancing was an electrifying way to end their daring season.”

While I have loved all of the shows that Ballet Fantastique has put on this season, Cinderella: A Rock Opera Ballet was definitely my favorite. It defied any pre-conceptions I had about ballet being a stringent form of dance. I liked how the show was able to use traditional ballet choreography with modern music and a big twist. After this show, I am even more intrigued to see what the Bontragers will craft up in the 2012-2013 VENTURE season. Guess I will have to wait and see what the talented Ballet Fantastique team will conjure up next year!

PS: If you want the best deals and the best seats for Ballet Fantastique’s 2012–2013 season, VENTURE, click here!  http://1.usa.gov/iNfOWL

The more the merrier, right?

This past weekend, I attended Ballet Fantastique’s second performance of Incendio. Instead of just going with one or two friends, I thought it would be fun to get a group together. We ended up going with six girls and had a great time.

It was such a fun experience, and we took up almost an entire side row at the Hult Center‘s Soreng theater. We had a group of past dancers, non-dancers and even someone who had never been to a ballet before. Maddie (pictured below with executive director and company dancer, Hannah) said she had an amazing time and was so pleased that this was the first ballet she saw. “I also loved that the band played on stage with the dancers — they were awesome.”

“Incendio was the perfect mix of passionate music and exquisite dance; I was entranced by a show that was truly fantastique!” -Amanda Knutsen, Freshman at the UO

Ballet Fantastique has a great group ticket ticket discount, which was perfect for us since the college budget tends to get a little tight. We are already planning on getting a group together to go see Arabian Nights in January, especially since there will be a $6 “Mango Magic Carpet” cocktail special in the lobby during intermission!

–Maggie, BFan Intern