This passionate program offers two masterpieces choreographed by the two "Mr. B's". August Bournonville's La Sylphide, in 2 acts, is a captivating story of love and loss. George Balanchine's Serenade, stirring, sweeping and romantic, is one of Balanchine's best-loved works.
Serenade is a milestone in the history of dance. It is the first original ballet Balanchine created in America. Originating it as a lesson in stage technique, Balanchine worked unexpected rehearsal events into the choreography. When one student fell, he incorporated it. Another day, a student arrived late, and this too became part of the ballet.
La Sylphide marked the beginning of the Romantic era in ballet. This charming and fantastical ballet revolves around James, a young Scotsman who fatefully meets and falls in love with Sylph on the day he is to wed his betrothed. He is befriended and then betrayed by a witch, and in the end James loses both his betrothed and his Sylph. La Sylphide's poignant beauty is reflected in how simply the story is told.