Headlining the performances danced by the company are two world premieres; Lauren Lovette’s La Follia Variations will close the first evening’s performance and Hope Boykin’s For What Is It All Worth? the second.
ABT Studio Company dancers from New York, California, Oregon, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Texas, South Korea, Japan, and the Philippines gathered in the Fall of 2020 for a “ballet bubble” at Goodspeed Musicals in East Haddam, Connecticut and at Kaatsbaan Cultural Park in Tivoli, New York.
They are Elizabeth Beyer, Tristan Brosnan, Finnian Carmeci, Kyra Coco, Cy Doherty, Teresa D’Ortone, Tillie Glatz, Elwince Magbitang, Andrew Robare, Jake Roxander, Yoon Jung Seo, Olivia Tweedy, Aleisha Walker, and Kotomi Yamada.
Dancers, staff, and creators followed stringent Covid-19 safety protocols in order to train and collaborate in person. Filmed at Kaatsbaan, the ABT Studio Company Winter Festival highlights ABT Studio Company’s mission to develop the next generation of ballet dancers, choreographers, and audiences.
ABT Studio Winter Festival Schedule
February 9, 2021 at 7:00 P.M. Gopak (Variation) Choreography after Rostislav Zakharov
The Leaves Are Fading (First Pas de Deux) Choreography by Antony Tudor
Escapades Choreography by Amy Hall Garner
Seven Sonatas (Suite) Choreography by Alexei Ratmansky
La Follia Variations (World Premiere) Choreography by Lauren Lovette
February 10, 2021 at 7:00 P.M.
Class Concert Choreography by Sascha Radetsky
Le Corsaire (Suite) Choreography after Marius Petipa
Grey Verses Choreography by Brendan Saye
For What Is It All Worth? (World Premiere) Choreography by Hope Boykin
ACT I of ABT Studio Company Winter Festival
Lauren Lovette, a principal dancer with New York City Ballet, has choreographed La Follia Variations for eight members of ABT Studio Company. Set to music by Francesco Geminiani, recorded by East Coast Chamber Orchestra, La Follia Variations was created in March 2020 in the final days before the Covid-19 pandemic forced the studios to close. It is Lovette’s second work for ABT Studio Company following Le Jeune in 2017.
“The progression of steps is one of my favorites among the classical ballet style. These dancers give me hope for the future of dance, and this piece of choreography is a celebration of that hope.”
Choreographer and Principal Dancer of New York City Ballet
The digital premiere of Amy Hall Garner’s Escapades, choreographed in 2019 and intended to be performed in London in spring 2020, is set to music by Ezio Bosso and Guy Sigsworth. With costumes styled by Garner, Escapades received its world premiere by ABT Studio Company in Manila, the Philippines on November 7, 2019.
“Escapades is an homage to the spirit, sensitivity, and passion of youth,” said Garner. “The duality of vulnerability and the intersection of expertise through movement reflect the parallel space of expression and exposure.”
A suite from Seven Sonatas, choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky and staged by Stella Abrera, will receive its ABT Studio Company premiere on this program. Seven Sonatas suite, set to Sonata in E Minor K. 198 and Sonata in A Major K. 39 by Domenico Scarlatti and performed by Michael Scales, features costumes by Holly Hynes. Seven Sonatas was given its World Premiere by American Ballet Theatre in 2009.
Act I of ABT Studio Company Winter Festival will also include Gopak (Variation), a Ukrainian folk dance variation staged by Gennadi Saveliev after Rostislav Zakharov. Gopak is set to music by Vasily Solovyov-Sedoi.
The first pas de deux from Antony Tudor’s The Leaves Are Fading is staged for ABT Studio Company by Amanda McKerrow and John Gardner and is set to music by Antonin Dvořák and features costumes by Patricia Zipprodt.
ACT II of ABT Studio Company Winter Festival
In her first work for ABT Studio Company, recently retired Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater leading dancer, choreographer, and creator Hope Boykin has created For What Is It All Worth?
The piece uses a palette of sound created and inspired by Stephen Stills’s classic For What It’s Worth, featuring renditions of the song by the Voices of East Harlem, Bill Laurance, and Billy Porter, with original spoken word by Boykin.
“During a time of uprising and protest, declaration and independence, For What Is It All Worth? explores the rights and freedoms of today’s youthful voices. For What Is It All Worth? gives permission to the young artist to shout: ‘It is for me!’”
Class Concert, choreographed by ABT Studio Company Artistic Director Sascha Radetsky and set to music arranged and performed by Michael Scales, will also this premiere evening and is Radetsky’s first work for the company.
“In Class Concert, a tribute to the dancer’s ritual morning practice, our young artists drill their technique first at the barre, then gather speed and space until they rise above the floor in flights of virtuosic and joyous movement,” describes Radetsky.
Grey Verses, choreographed by Brendan Saye, a principal dancer with The National Ballet of Canada, is set to music by Claude Debussy, John Corigliano, and Sergei Rachmaninoff. Grey Verses received its ABT Studio Company Premiere in Manila, the Philippines on November 8, 2019.
“My intent with Grey Verses was to manifest loss, love, and humanity,” said Saye. “I wanted the piece to feel intimate, accessible, and above all, honest, in the hopes that the audience may see something of their own in its open identity.”
Act II of the ABT Studio Company Winter Festival will round out with a suite from Le Corsaire, staged by Radetsky after Marius Petipa.
“The repertoire in these programs, which ranges from classical and neoclassical to modern works, reflects ABT’s commitment to cultivating both innovative new choreography and a promising new generation of dancer. We all feel deeply fortunate to have safely gathered in our ballet bubble. The opportunity to train, create, and perform in person once again, after a long period of isolation and during a crucial point in our young dancers' artistic development, was a gift. We are grateful as well for the privilege of working with choreographers like Hope, Lauren, Amy, and Brendan, who animated our studios – in person and virtually – with artistry and imagination.”