The Kennedy Center presents American Ballet Theatre in Alexei Ratmansky’s Harlequinade for the company’s 2019 engagement. Annually, America’s National Ballet Company makes an appearance in its capital and this year they bring Ratmansky’s reconstruction of Marius Petipa’s classic, comedic ballet Les Millions d’Arlequin. Harlequinade makes its DC premiere less than a year after its world premiere at the Metropolitan Opera House on June 4, 2018.
Ratmansky was able to recreate much of the original choreography by studying Stepanov’s notations which are part of the Harvard Theatre Colleciton. The plot follows a not-so-wealthy Harlequin’s fight for his true love Columbine and is presented in a two-act, full-length production employing comedy of the Italian commedia dell’arte style. The dancers will be accompanied by the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra playing Riccardo Drigo’s original score. The revival of this once “lost” classic is augmented by Robert Perdziola’s vibrant new costumes and sets, all designed after the original 1900 pieces by Orest Allegri and Ivan Vsevolozhsky.