Sarasota Ballet Announces Its 2024-2025 Season

The ballet will offer several world premieres, play host to guest companies, and perform classics like Giselle, Romeo and Juliet and, of course, works by Sir Frederick Ashton.

By Staff April 11, 2024

The Sarasota Ballet performs Sir Peter Wright's <em>Giselle</em>.
The Sarasota Ballet performs Sir Peter Wright's Giselle.

Image: Frank Atura

The Sarasota Ballet has announced its 2024-2025 season, which will feature three world premieres, two company premieres, two full-length story ballets (Sir Peter Wright’s Giselle and Sir Frederick Ashton’s Romeo and Juliet), guest performances by the Mark Morris Dance Group, and a special extra performance by the Martha Graham Dance Company prior to the opening of the regular season.

Here's a more in-depth look at the schedule.

Program One: Relative Works

Featuring works from artists with close ties to the company, Program One opens with a world premiere by choreographer and Sarasota Ballet resident artist Jessica Lang. Lang’s work has been performed by companies including The Royal Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Alvin Ailey, and the National Ballet of Japan. 

Returning to the stage for the first time since its world premiere in 2019 is Ricardo Graziano’s Amorosa, a neoclassical work for five couples that's enhanced by striking red corset costuming for the women and stark black high-collared outfits for the men. 

Closing the program is Johan Kobborg’s classical production of Napoli Act III, an important part of Danish choreographer August Bournonville’s legacy.

Victoria Hulland and Ricardo Rhodes in Sir Peter Wright's <em>Giselle</em>.
Victoria Hulland and Ricardo Rhodes in Sir Peter Wright's Giselle.

Image: Frank Atura

Program Two: Giselle

Program Two features the iconic full-length classic Giselle. The ballet brings to life a story of young love, betrayal, tragedy and redemption through forgiveness. Considered by many the crowning achievement of the romantic ballet era, Giselle perfectly exemplifies how ballet is taught, preserved, adapted, and handed down from generation to generation.

Program Three: Fanciful Journey

Program Three closes 2024 with a trio of ballets. Balanchine’s Rubies, the central ballet of his full-length Jewels program.

Edwaard Liang returns with another company premiere, this time with his abstract yet emotional Wunderland. Matching the pulsating rhythms of Philip Glass’ score, Liang’s choreography molds striking poses and geometric formations that inspire tension and harmony.

The world premiere of Sir David Bintley’s The Spider’s Feast closes Program Three. The ballet transports audiences to a bustling garden filled with colorful insects while a menacing arachnid stalks its prey. It's brought to life through Bintley’s choreography, plus sets and costumes by renowned designer Dick Bird.

The Sarasota Ballet in Paul Taylor's Brandenburgs.
The Sarasota Ballet in Paul Taylor's Brandenburgs.

Image: Frank Atura

Program Four: Quintessential

Program Four opens with the return of Renato Paroni’s Rococo Variations, last performed by the company in April 2010 and choreographed to Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme for cello and orchestra.

The program continues with Paul Taylor’s Brandenburgs and closes with choreographer Gemma Bond's world premiere Preludes. Bond has created world premieres for company including the Royal Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. 

Program Five: Mark Morris Dance Group

Program Five features performances from the acclaimed Mark Morris Dance Group. Founded in 1980 by trailblazing choreographer Mark Morris, the group has performed across the globe, garnering critical acclaim thanks to Morris’ expressive choreography and musicality. 

Program Six: Romeo and Juliet

Program Six features the company premiere of Sir Frederick Ashton’s full-length Romeo and Juliet, which was choreographed in 1955 to a score by Sergei Prokofiev’s score. It's infused with Ashton’s musicality and penchant for pas de deux.

Marijana Dominis, Victoria Hulland and Daniel Pratt in George Balanchine's <em>Serenade.</em>
Marijana Dominis, Victoria Hulland and Daniel Pratt in George Balanchine's Serenade.

Image: Frank Atura

Program Seven: Movements of Genius

The finale of the 2024-2025 season, Program Seven features a triple bill that opens with Balanchine’s Serenade, choreographed to Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings.

Robbins’ In the Night is comprised of a trio of pas de deux, and contemplates romantic love in stages evidenced by three couples: one euphoric, another restrained and a third tempestuous.

Closing the program and the season is Ashton’s A Wedding Bouquet, which has a fragmented narrative originally spoken by Gertrude Stein and set to a series of incidents at a provincial wedding in France around the turn of the century where, comically, everything seems to go wrong.

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