Ernest Hemingway loved bullfighting, but how did he feel about ballet? The question comes to mind as the Washington Ballet announces its 2012-2013 season, which will close with Artistic Director Septime Webre’s balletic retelling of “The Sun Also Rises.”
The company is currently performing “Alice (in Wonderland)” at the Kennedy Center.
Hemingway’s novel of an American journalist in the 1920s, running with girls in Paris and bulls in Pamplona, Spain, is curious material for a ballet, but then so is “The Great Gatsby.” However, it was his 2010 “Gatsby” production — a hit with audiences — that inspired Webre to try his hand at Hemingway. And more such adaptations are planned: The Washington Ballet is launching a new initiative, “American Experience,” that will produce a series of full-length ballets over the next several years. Possible works, according to the company, include those by Henry James, Tennessee Williams and Langston Hughes.
“The Sun Also Rises” will be performed May 8-12, 2013, at the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theater.
The 2012-2013 season opens with the company premiere of “Dracula,” by Milwaukee Ballet Director Michael Pink, in an extended run at the Eisenhower Theater, Oct. 24 to Nov. 4, 2012. The two-week run is in response to the strong ticket sales for “Gatsby” and “Alice (in Wonderland).”
Webre’s “The Nutcracker” returns to THEARC Theater Nov. 23-25. On Nov. 29, the ballet opens a four-week run at the Warner Theatre.
In February 2013, the company will perform two separate programs at Sidney Harman Hall. The first, titled “L’Amour (love, baby),” runs Feb. 13-17, and will include the world premiere of “Dangerous Liaisons” by Associate Artistic Director David Palmer, set to Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons.” Also on view will be a reprise of Edwaard Liang’s “Wunderland,” and a new piece by a yet-to-be-announced choreographer. The second program, “Tour-de-Force,” runs Feb. 21-24, and will feature excerpts from such ballets as “Le Corsaire” and “Don Quixote,” and a piece called “Opposites Distract” by ballet master Elaine Kudo. Also on the bill: Balanchine’s “Stars and Stripes,” as a tribute to the presidential inauguration.
Webre’s full-length “Cinderella” will be performed March 20-24 at the Eisenhower.