A perennial event, Pacific Northwest Ballet will perform three contemporary ballets in their Director’s Choice program from March 15-24, 2019 at Marion Oliver McCaw Hall in Seattle. Curated by Artistic Director, Peter, Boal, this year’s event will include two world premieres and one PNB premiere.
“DIRECTOR’S CHOICE can be a wild card,” said Mr. Boal in announcing the program. “Often the line-up includes works recently created in our studios, finished days, if not hours before the curtain rises. There is thrill in the risk and wonder in the unknown. Many audiences will see the work of Robyn Mineko Williams and Matthew Neenan for the first time. We’re still discovering the freshness of Justin Peck’s ballets, and the roster of creative contributors from composers to costume designers adds to the sense of discovery. DIRECTOR’S CHOICE offers a glimpse into what may define the future of dance and PNB.”
– Peter Boal, Artistic Director of Pacific Northwest Ballet
Former Hubbard Street Dance Chicago dancer Robyn Mineko Williams says of her piece: “The Trees The Trees sparked a spectacular collage of imagery in my mind that I wanted to bring to life through movement. Each of the piece’s vignettes is built on a poem from the book [The Trees The Trees by Heather Christle, Octopus Books], inspiring a mélange of scenes rooted in the everyday and sprinkled with fantastical, heart-punching moments.”
Mr. Boal says that “Matthew’s work is a delicious cocktail of craft, energy and surprise. He has a rare gift for infusing his pieces with refreshing and unexpected humanity. His work, well-known and much admired in Philadelphia and on the east coast, is ours to discover. Matt has long admired our dancers, and the combination of talent and creativity, plus the allure of Oliver Davis’ music score, promises to reward.” Matthew Neenan‘s ballet remains untitled at the moment.
Justin Peck‘s In the Countenance of Kings is the third piece by this young choreographer that has entered PNB’s repertoire and features music by Sufjan Stevens. “My intention is to make sure that the new work being created for the ballet world is relevant. I think it’s really important to keep working with artists of this generation, whether they be visual artists, or designers, or composers,” explains Mr. Peck.
There are several special events that accompany this program:
March 8 – See excerpts of the ballets at Friday Preview, an hour-long rehearsal hosted by Peter Boal and other members of the company’s staff
March 14 (pre-dress rehearsal) – Listen to a discussion between Peter Boal and choreographers Matthew Neenan, Justin Peck, and Robyn Mineko Williams
March 15-24 (pre-performance) – Ballet Talk is a free for ticket holders 30-minute chat with Audience Education Manager Doug Fullington held one hour before each performance
March 15-24 (post-performance) – After each performance is a Meet the Artist question-and-answer session with company staff and dancers