Friday, April 29, 2011

Photo Friday: River North Dance Chicago Fireside Chat and Reception

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For your viewing pleasure, here's a slideshow of photos from the Fireside Chat with Dance Critic Lucia Mauro and River North Dance Chicago Artistic Director Frank Chaves as well as some photos of the post-show reception.

Congratulations to all the dancers and staff of River North on presenting a wonderful performance on our stage for the first time!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Our Live Tweets From The Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg Fireside Chat and Performance

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In case you missed it, our own Meaghan Madges was tweeting live from our pre-show Fireside Chat with Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg founder, Boris Eifman and Dance Critic Lucia Mauro. Here's the timeline of the chat and her tweets about the performance.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

A Russian Ballet Enthusiast's Thoughts on Boris Eifman [guest post]

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Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg "Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman"

Chicago audiences are very lucky to be able to see the work of visionary Russian choreographer Boris Eifman when he brings his ballet to perform Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman at the Auditorium Theatre on April 21 and 23.

Often, Russian dance companies are known for their virtuosic productions of classical pieces, such as Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty. Mr. Eifman’s company, however, gives Americans a different taste of Russian ballet ― he puts a contemporary spin on well-known stories, giving his ballets a fresh, modern appeal.

Boris Eifman
Mr. Eifman pushes boundaries by using minimalist sets that perfectly compliment the choreography to communicate just what he’s trying to say. The works are avante garde, but they are also elegant and sophisticated, which keeps them accessible to a wide audience.
Just because Eifman’s ballets are modern doesn’t mean they’re not masterfully performed. All of the dancers in his company are stunningly beautiful and have impeccable technique, making this company a joy to watch.

It is also personally gratifying to me to have Mr. Eifman visit the United States because he is from my hometown of St. Petersburg. Although I never had the opportunity to see his company perform when I was a child growing up there, I have seen the Eifman Ballet several times when I have made trips back home, and their works are always moving and memorable.

Two years ago, the last time the Eifman Ballet performed at the Auditorium Theatre, I had the pleasure of hosting a pre-performance reception for Mr. Eifman at the Russian Pointe Dance Boutique. As he laughed and chatted with the guests, I was so impressed by his humility, grace, and sense of calm. Although he is famous and well-respected in Russia and throughout the world, he was down to earth, and it was evident he derives great joy from ballet and from sharing the arts with others.

I hope you all will join me in seeing more of this brilliant choreographer’s work this year!

Aleksandra_Efimova_2011Aleksandra Efimova was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and moved to the United States in 1993. As president and owner of Russian Pointe Dance Boutique, Ms. Efimova has been a prominent and vocal supporter of Chicago's growing dance community. In addition to her interest in the arts, Ms. Efimova is a member of the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association, the American-Russian Chamber of Commerce & Industry, and is an alumna of the Harvard Business School.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Celebrating Our 2011-2012 Season: Enter to Win a Five Show Subscription Package!

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As a special thank you to all our readers, fans, and followers, we're giving away a subscription package for two tickets to five shows in our 2011-2012 season! Also, a second prize of two tickets to any show also will be given away to a lucky runner up.

Enter to win on our Facebook Page
just Like us and fill out a short entry form!

Alternate entry method.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Three Reasons Why Theatre Lovers Should See Eifman

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Nicole Losurdo is the Auditorium Theatre's Senior Director of Education and holds a Masters Degree in Educational Theatre  from New York University.


Three Reasons Theatre Lovers Should See The Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg’s production of Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman, this week at the Auditorium Theatre:
  1. Thoughtful use of dramatic conventions. Eifman wows the theatregoer with his expert use of the stage and theatrical conventions. He fearlessly creates a space for the ballet to unfold in a way that mirrors a traditional theatre director. He considers and plays with light and shadow to create very specific spaces and places much more intimate than most story ballets: small, hot, vast, drafty, and eerie. His use of levels draws the eye across the stage, up and back again, forcing the viewer’s to dance across the stage in a seamless sweep with and against the choreography. Visually stunning, his costume choices are interesting and used to enhance the development of character and story. When considering the range of movement dance costumes need to be designed to accommodate, like scissor sharp jumps and high leg extensions, one sits in amazement watching the Eifman dancer work their costume as an extension of the character’s body. Boris Eifman’s work has a dramatic and emotional charge, and it is fueled by his theatrical sensibility. It is exciting ballet. Which brings me to number 2...
  2. Boris Eifman is a master of storytelling. Unlike a more traditional story ballet filled with expositional gesture, Eifman delicately and expertly reveals dramatic and emotional moments through dramaturgic movement. Eifman does not wish to merely tell a story through movement, but he wishes to share a story by examining the mystery of the human soul, bringing the audience to a “philosophical contemplation of life” through movement. He has something to say in his ballets, social parallels to draw, important ideas to express. Eifman’s curiosity permeates through his ballets in a way that forces his audience to do the same, to wonder and grapple with larger questions and issues relevant in the here and now – not just in the moment of the ballet or in the Fantasies of a Madman
  3. The Eifman Ballet is just cool. Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman takes place in an insane asylum, not your typical backdrop for a story ballet. But, I would also argue that the Eifman Ballet is not your typical ballet company. Sure, they can plié, arabesque, and grand jeté with the best of them; the company’s technical ability is even evident to non-dance enthusiast’s sensibility, but Eifman’s dancers also radiate a realness of emotion and expression – almost as genuinely as a method actor. You are pulled into their performance and intrigued by what you see at every moment. 

Monday, April 18, 2011

Student Rush: $15 Tickets for The Eifman Ballet

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Founder and Artistic Director, Boris Eifman, is one of the only choreographers in the world who is still creating new story ballets.

The ballet is a reinterpretation of the classic Don Quixote. This version is set in an asylum where a man who thinks he's Don Q inspires his fellow inmates with his daydreams of the beauties of Spain. Watch video of the Eifman Ballet.
If you love a good story ballet with a twist, The Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg's Don Quixote, or Fantasies of a Madman is the ballet to see this spring.

The Company performs here on Thursday, April 21 at 7:30pm and on Saturday, April 23 at 2:00pm and 8:00pm.

You can get $15 Student Rush tickets one hour before show time at the Auditorium Box Office (located at 50 E. Congress Pkwy). Remember to bring your valid college ID; there's also a limit of two tickets per ID. Student Rush tickets and locations are subject to availability and cannot be reserved in advance.

Sign up for e-mail Student Rush Alerts and be among the first to know when Student Rush becomes available.

* Student Rush tickets are sold at the discretion of the presenter. Policies differ from show to show.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Audience is Always In The Thoughts of River North Dance Chicago Dancers [video]

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PBS recently aired a rebroadcast of the documentary "Every Dancer Has a Story" featuring River North Dance Chicago, a company performing on our stage for the first time this Saturday, April 16 at 8 p.m. In the promo clips for the documentary, it's interesting to hear that the perspectives of both the dancers in the company, and their artistic director, Frank Chaves, both talk about presenting a piece for the benefit of the audience and how passionate about what they do (it's not a money making endeavor).

Take a few minutes to see the dancers in action below and to get an insider's take on River North Dance Chicago!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Student Rush: $15 Tickets for Sketches of Blue and River North Dance Chicago

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I've been so excited for this week for months! We're finishing up our Miles Davis Festival this week and college students have the opportunity to celebrate this legendary trumpeter with us for only $15.

Sketches of Blue: An Orbert Davis Tribute to Miles
Thursday, April 14 at 7:30 pm

You won't want to miss one of Chicago's most treasured trumpeters, Orbert Davis, pay homage to Miles Davis. Act 1, entitled Kind of Blue features the Orbert Davis Sextet with Ari Brown and Ernest Dawkins. You'll hear a world premiere in Act 2 as the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic Chamber Ensemble performs Sketches of Spain (Revisited) which is adapted and composed by Orbert Davis himself.

River North Dance Chicago
Saturday, April 16 at 8:00 pm

I experienced this dynamic dance company for the first time in college, and I hope you will too. Become a part of history with us this weekend as River North Dance Chicago performs the world-premiere, Simply Miles, Simply Us. Artistic Director (and former saxophone player) Frank Chaves choreographs the piece and takes inspiration from the music of the legendary trumpeter, Miles Davis.

You can get $15 Student Rush tickets one hour before show time at the Auditorium Box Office (located at 50 E. Congress Pkwy). Remember to bring your valid college ID; there's also a limit of two tickets per ID. Student Rush tickets and locations are subject to availability and cannot be reserved in advance.

Sign up for e-mail Student Rush Alerts and be among the first to know when Student Rush becomes available.

* Student Rush tickets are sold at the discretion of the presenter. Policies differ from show to show.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Announcing Our 2011-12 Subscription Season

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After a long and very snowy winter, spring has finally sprung, and as we enter the season of renewal, there’s no better time to announce our 2011-2012 season and to begin our subscription renewal process.

Our 2011-2012 season is bigger and better than ever. With nine subscription shows plus a very special add-on option, we cannot wait for our new season to begin, and we hope you will join us for the fun.

Enter our Facebook giveaway for a chance to win a five-show subscription package or two tickets for any show!

Rasta Thomas’ BAD BOYS of DANCE
AXIS Dance Company
Batsheva Dance Company
American Ballet Theatre Giselle
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

Hallelujah Broadway
2011 Holiday Pops Tour, featuring the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra with guest Rockapella
Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz Gospel Messiah

Add-On Special:
On Stage With…Susan Werner

Subscriptions and Groups of 10+ are available for the music and dance performances listed above with special add-on pricing for Susan Werner for all our subscribers. Remember, you can receive subscriber benefits by opting for just two of our nine shows (two-show subscriptions start at just $54); however, the more shows you choose, the greater your discount—up to 25% off!

Auditorium subscribers have premium seat selection and receive amazing benefits, including:

Discounts: 10% for two shows, 15% for three, 20% for four and 25% for five or more
Family Series: A FREE child subscription with a full-priced adult subscription. Available on specific performances; please call for details.
Flexible and Stress-Free Exchange Policy
Fireside Chats (for most productions)
Pre-Paid Parking: Save $6 with $12 parking per show at Loop Auto Parks

To ensure preferred seating, please renew by May 2, 2011. View and download an order form.
Subscriber form may be faxed to 312.431.2360 or mailed to 50 E. Congress Pkwy, Chicago, IL 60605. To order by phone, for groups of 10+ or questions, please call 312. 431.2357.

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