Morphoses’ debut is a ‘coup’ for Vail |

Morphoses’ debut is a ‘coup’ for Vail

Damian Woetzel
Vail, CO, Colorado
Special to the DailyChoreographer Christopher Wheeldon in the studio.

Today we shift the focus of Director’s Corner to concentrate on the ongoing Vail International Dance Festival. For the next week, the festival provides an amazing opportunity to explore and enjoy the world’s best dance, from ballet to modern and tap to ballroom. New to the festival this year is Artistic Director Damian Woetzel, principal dancer with New York City Ballet. Damian has graciously agreed to once again share his insight into the world of dance and this year’s festival ” enjoy.

” Kris Sabel, director of cultural programming for the Vail Valley Foundations.

Hello again, Vail Valley. I hope you all agree that it’s been a great first week of the Vail International Dance Festival, and there’s still much more to come.

On Monday, the “king of tap” will be in town. The one and only Savion Glover will perform at the Ford Amphitheater at 6:30 p.m. with live musical accompaniment; this show is simply not to be missed. When I saw Glover dance in New York last month he was beyond-words good ” just incredible. I urge you to grab this chance to see someone who truly is the best in the world at what he does. Be sure to bring the kids; if they loved “Happy Feet,” they can see the man behind Mumbles in person.

After Glover finishes, it’s time for the shows that have been so anticipated around the country: Christopher Wheeldon and his new company begin with an intimate preview performance titled “Up Close” on Wednesday at the Vilar Center in Beaver Creek.

This is a unique opportunity to see one of the world’s greatest dance-makers in action ” and behind the scenes. Chris will talk to the audience and show them how he “paints the music.” There will be movies and demonstrations of how he creates a ballet and rehearses the amazing dancers he has brought to Vail from around the world.

The evening concludes with a look at a completed ballet on the beautiful Vilar Center stage, and is a lead-up to the most highly anticipated debut of a new company in memory. That debut is Friday at Ford Amphitheater in Vail as Morphoses/The Wheeldon Company officially takes to the stage for the very first time. This is a rare moment in dance history, and the definition of a must-see event. The New York Times wrote that it was a “coup” for Vail to have this unique honor in launching Chris Wheeldon’s new company ” let’s all be there to make it a fantastic beginning.

The last night of the festival is Saturday, and ballroom is the name of the game. Come on out to the amphitheater for an evening with ballroom’s best, featuring champions from around the world performing the dances you love. The ballroom evening was a huge hit at the 2006 festival, and these dancers are back to thrill Vail again.

On Sunday, we bring it all to a close with a free family matinee by Hubbard Street 2, a young and vibrant company from Chicago that will take the amphitheater stage at noon. Bring the whole family for this great afternoon of dance and fun.

So that’s the story from Vail International Dance Festival 2007. It’s been a pleasure putting these performances together, but nothing has been more fun than hearing the audiences’ cheers for the first shows this week. I hope you will join us for next week’s incredible shows and let all the dancing sweep you away.

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