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Atlanta Ballet Welcomes Gennadi Nedvigin, Announces 2016-2017 Season

By Rachel Hellwig

“My aesthetic has been formed by the diverse range of choreographers and dancers I’ve worked with and by the diverse range of pieces I’ve performed in my career. Different styles of dance and choreography are like different languages,” he said. “The more languages you know, the better.” Drawing further upon the language parallel, the Bolshoi-trained Nedvigin related that he’s experienced the challenge of being immersed in new language environments before—first when he moved from his native Russia to dance with Le Jeune Ballet de France in France, and then again when he came to the United States to join San Francisco Ballet in 1997. “It’s like being dipped in water and forced to swim—twice,” he said.

Nedvigin will be “dipped in water” again as he transitions from dancer to director. Though this will be his debut in such a role, he has worked with Atlanta Ballet before when he staged Yuri Possokhov’s Classical Symphony on the company in 2014. “I was drawn to the sense of community among Atlanta Ballet’s dancers,” he said. “And I was proud of their performance.”

Gennadi Nedvigin (center). "Classical Symphony" rehearsal with Atlanta Ballet. Photo courtesy of Atlanta Ballet.

Gennadi Nedvigin (center). “Classical Symphony” rehearsal with Atlanta Ballet. Photo courtesy of Atlanta Ballet.

Nedvigin announced that Atlanta Ballet’s 2016-2017 season will include works the company has performed before, such as John McFall’s Nutcracker, David Bintley’s Carmina Burana, and Helen Pickett’s Camino Real, as well as mixed repertory performances he personally selected. “I’ve carefully chosen these programs. They will hint at the direction I will take the company,” he said. He also emphasized that the company will perform “classical, neoclassical, and contemporary works”– bringing to mind the “many languages” analogy again.

Among the mixed repertory programs, Gennadi’s Choice will feature his staging of selections from Paquita, the Atlanta premiere of Liam Scarlett’s Vespertine, and a world premiere by Gemma Bond. Firebird will include Yuri Possokhov’s Firebird, George Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante, and Jiří Kylián’s Petite Mort.

What other changes might Nedvigin bring to Atlanta Ballet? He indicated that he’s open to the idea of a ranking system for the currently unranked company. “Ranking exists whether it’s announced or not,” he said. “Ranking helps give dancers recognition and it doesn’t prevent lower-ranked dancers from performing lead roles.” Another possibility he’s looking into is touring. However, he acknowledges that changes will take time and that it will be at least a few years before he begins to attain his vision for the company. One thing that won’t significantly change for the present is the roster of Atlanta Ballet’s dancers. All had their contracts renewed, though some have opted not to return in the fall.

Nedvigin will conclude his 19-year performing career with San Francisco Ballet in May as Lensky in John Cranko’s Onegin. He will succeed John McFall who retires in June after 23 years as artistic director of Atlanta Ballet. Nedvigin will be just the fourth artistic director in the history of the 87-year-old company. “It’s an honor to be joining Atlanta Ballet,” he said. “These are exciting times.”

Atlanta Ballet in Helen Pickett's "Camino Real". Photo by Charlie McCullers.

Atlanta Ballet in Helen Pickett’s “Camino Real”. Photo by Charlie McCullers.

Atlanta Ballet’s 2016-2017 Season

ATLANTA BALLET’S NUTCRACKER

December 9 – 24, 2016 | The Fox Theatre

Live with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra

Encore Presentation of David Bintley’s CARMINA BURANA

February 3 – 11, 2017 | Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Live with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra

One Hour Family Ballet – TITLE TO BE ANNOUNCED

Recommended for families and younger audiences.

GENNADI’s CHOICE (Mixed Repertory)

March 17 – 19, 2017 | Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Selections from Paquita choreographed by Marius Petipa and staged by Gennadi Nedvigin, the Atlanta premiere of Vespertine by Liam Scarlett, and a world premiere by Gemma Bond.

FIREBIRD (Mixed Repertory)

April 14 – 16, 2017 | Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Firebird by Yuri Possokhov, Allegro Brillante by George Balanchine, and Petite Mort by Jiří Kylián.

Encore Presentation of Helen Pickett’s Tennessee Williams-Inspired CAMINO REAL

May 12 – 14, 2017 | Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre

Choreography by Helen Pickett

Music & Sound Design by Peter Salem

Live with the Atlanta Ballet Orchestra



This post first appeared on 4dancers, please read the originial post: here

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