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Lots of dynamic dance in store for Vail

Damian WoetzelVail, CO Colorado
Matt Albani/Special to the Vail DailyAmerican Ballet Theatre superstars Ethan Stiefel and Gillian Murphy headline the Festival Highlights Spectacular on Sunday in Vail, Colorado
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Hello Vail Valley! I hope you had a chance to see Savion Glover perform earlier this week- his two sold-out shows were a momentous kick-off to the 2009 dance festival. And now, as we approach the first weekend, I’m back to tell you what to watch for at the coming performances. On Saturday, Miami City Ballet will make its Vail debut at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater with an all-Balanchine program specially put together for the festival. This performance features one of America’s foremost ballet companies performing classics by the brilliant choreographer and founder of the New York City Ballet. It will be an evening unlike any other at this year’s festival, as Balanchine’s masterpieces, “The Four Temperaments” and “Serenade” both make their first appearance in Vail in the uniquely beautiful setting of the Ford Amphitheater. On Sunday, you won’t want to miss our Festival Highlights Spectacular program. The evening features appearances by stars from Morphoses, Tango masters and Swing Dance champions, as well as the electrifying Buckets & Tap Shoes and the Miami City Ballet in a section of Balanchine’s “Rubies.” Special guests for this performance are ballet superstars Gillian Murphy and Ethan Stiefel of American Ballet Theatre. This program will introduce the audience to the huge variety of 2009 festival artists, and it will also feature a performance by local students of our Celebrate the Beat music and dance education program. They will dance with me and special guest Argie Tang.On Monday night at the Vilar Center we present an UpClose performance saluting the career of Edward Villella, with his Miami City Ballet company, and special guest Ethan Stiefel performing many of the works which Villella made famous. I will host the evening, and I’ll be spurring Villella on to illuminate for us great ballets like “Rubies,” “Prodigal Son,” “Agon,” “Afternoon of a Faun” and many others that we will see performed in this special UpClose format. The week flies on with Dance for $20.09 on Tuesday, a mixed bill featuring Buckets & Tap Shoes, artists from New York City Ballet, modern dancer Richard Siegal/The Bakery and much more, all for $20.09 for a reserved seat or $9 on the lawn.On Aug. 6, we are thrilled to present an UpClose performance at the Vilar Center celebrating the career of New York City Ballet and Morphoses ballerina Wendy Whelan. This unique evening will feature Whelan and the spectacular dancers of Morphoses performing and examining works from Whelan’s vast repertory of ballets by Balanchine, Robbins and Christopher Wheeldon. There also will be a preview of new work being created by Wheeldon for Whelan right now in Vail during the Morphoses residency. There is more to come with the Morphoses Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater performance on Aug. 7, two very different International Evenings performances on Aug. 8 and 9, and Ballroom’s Best on Aug. 10th. I will write more about those next week, until then, I hope to see you at the performances.


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