Joffrey Ballet Opening Of The Season

Joffrey Ballet has also returned to live performances! They opened their season on Wednesday with the show called “Home: A Celebration.” Now, they perform in the Lyric Opera House, I move that they’ve been looking forward. Now, we have Opera and Ballet at the same place, as it should be:)

There were fewer people in the audience than for the opening of the Lyric season. I am not sure why – do people care less about ballet? I mean, for the Lyric season-opening, the theater was packed, and on Wednesday, there were some gaps in the audience :)/ I enjoyed the performance from the first to the very last moment. It was brilliant!

I took mom to this performance. At first, I thought that she might start going on her usual “that’s not Kirov ballet.” Fortunately, she didn’t declare the superiority of the Russian/Soviet ballet and genuinely enjoyed the performance.
It was brilliant! The performance started from the revived Birthday variations on Verdi’s music. This piece was choreographed by one of Joffrey’s co-founders, Gerald Arpino, presenting classical ballet. The other three pieces are contemporary, and they are soul and mind-blowing! I do not have words to describe them!
I was hoping that there would be some videos on Joffrey’s website, but unfortunately, I found only one very short video. Hopefully, more videos will be awailable later!

I am copying the descriptions from the digital program notes:

Birthday Variations, choreographed
by Joffrey co-founder Gerald Arpino
with music by Giuseppe Verdi, was
commissioned in 1986 by Becky D’Angelo
as a birthday present to her husband Dino,
who owned Chicago’s Civic Opera House
(now the Lyric Opera House) and loved
Verdi’s music. This lively and melodic
ballet is considered one of Arpino’s most popular creations.

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
Coming for to carry me home
Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
Coming for to carry me home
I looked over Jordan and what did I see
Coming for to carry me home
A band of angels coming after me
Coming for to carry me home
Inspired by the powerful American
spiritual Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,
Chanel DaSilva creates a visceral narrative
work for five men that investigates the
supernatural majesty of angels and the
many complexities of what it means to be
human. Set to the music of avant-garde cellist Zoë Keating.



Under the Trees’
Voices features
15 dancers
performing to
Symphony No. 2
by Italian
Ezio Bosso.
The performance
channels the
power of
community in
the age of social
distancing as well
as paying tribute
to an endangered
nature. In four
distinct sections,
Nicolas Blanc
imagines a future
of hope and unity.

Yoshihisa Arai envisions the lead role
in Boléro as a type of muse, evoking a
humanistic quality to the overall feeling
of the piece, leading their “disciples”
through a serene world of light and
shadows. The primary inspiration for
Boléro is the Spanish-flavored, orchestral
work of the same name by Maurice
Ravel. The famous one-movement score
is known for beginning softly and ending,
according to the composer’s instructions,
as loudly as possible. “To me, the most
fascinating quality of the music is that the
rhythm remains the same throughout the
piece and yet, as the instruments change
from snare drum to flute, trombone
to woodwinds, and so on, an array of
emotions are unleashed,” says Arial, This inspires me most of all”

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