Ballet West Announces Thrilling 2011-12 Season

Utah Premiere of Ben Stevenson’s DRACULA Opens Performance Year Just in Time for Halloween

Ballet West Artistic Director Adam Sklute is pleased to announce Ballet West’s 2011-12 season line-up, where athleticism, artistry, drama and excitement come together to deliver a performance year that promises to be spectacular.

Ballet West delivers a delectable Halloween treat with the Utah premiere of Ben Stevenson’s blockbuster production of Dracula, set to the music of Franz Liszt as arranged and orchestrated by John Lanchbery. In December the magic continues with Utah’s favorite holiday tradition – Willam Christensen’s The Nutcracker. In February, just in time for Valentine’s Day, Ballet West presents the Utah premiere of Marius Petipa’s classic bravura romantic comedy Don Quixote, staged by Anna-Marie Holmes. In the spring, Ballet West unveils a compelling world premiere and two stunning Utah premieres. Val Caniparoli’s new The Lottery, commissioned by Ballet West and created on Ballet West Artists, with music composed specifically for the ballet by Robert Moran and sets an costumes designed by Sandra Woodall, is based on Shirley Jackson’s chilling short story and promises to be a major event in American ballet. Completing the evening are the Utah premieres of Jiri Kylian’s Petite Mort, an exciting and sensual ensemble work featuring artistic swordplay and set to the music of Mozart, and George Balanchine’s poetic and flowing Emeralds, with music by Gabriel Faure. Ballet West’s season concludes with Innovations 2012, spotlighting new works by Ballet West artists including an expanded version of Ballet West Principal Dancer Michael Bearden’s 2010 Descent, and featuring the return of Susan Shields’ bright and dynamic Grand Synthesis.

“Our 2011-2012 Season is going to be spectacular.” said Ballet West Artistic Director Adam Sklute, “With brand new creations, renowned masterpieces, and great classics the repertoire is sure to excite our audiences and highlight the versatility, technical brilliance and dramatic flair of our world-class artists.” Sklute adds, “From opulent romantic storytelling to stark and powerful pure dance their will truly be something for everyone this year.”

To become a season subscriber, contact Ballet West’s Subscriber Services Department at (801) 869-6900 or visit


An evening to remember! This exclusive, one-night-only event presents exciting previews and showstoppers in a one-hour program that makes for the perfect evening of breath-taking performance.

PROGRAM 1 – October 21, 22, 26 – November 1, 2011

(Utah Premiere)

Music: Franz Liszt

Choreography: Ben Stevenson

Scenic Design: Thomas Boyd

Costume Design: Judanna Lynn

Planned especially for the Halloween season, Ballet West is proud to present Ben Stevenson’s Dracula. Set to a haunting arrangement of music by Franz Liszt, this wildly theatrical and opulent ballet features vampire brides who fly through the air, a ghastly coach that careens on and off the stage, and exciting drama and dancing for the entire company.  According to The New York Times, this chilling blockbuster is “something to sink your teeth into.”

PROGRAM 2 – December 2-28, 2011
The Nutcracker

Music: P.I. Tchaikovsky
Choreography: Willam Christensen

Scenery: Ariel Ballif
Costumes: David Heuvel

Ballet West rings in the holidays with the 56th edition of Willam Christensen’s beloved production of The Nutcracker.  Hailed by New York Times Dance Critic Alastair Macaulay as “one of the best production I’ve ever seen,” Ballet West’s The Nutcracker features Tchaikovsky’s timeless score and a brilliant blend of costumes, sets and choreography to create a magical storybook world.

December 30 & 31, 2011
The NUTTY Nutcracker

Ballet West presents what has become its annual spoof on this holiday favorite – The NUTTY Nutcracker, December 30 and 31. A new production each season, audiences will enjoy their favorite music and characters in a whole new way. This program is full of fun flourishes and whimsical surprises!

PROGRAM 3 – February 10, 11 and 14-18, 2012
Don Quixote
(Utah Premiere)

Music: Ludwig Minkus
Choreography: Marius Petipa, as staged by Anna-Marie Holmes
Scenery: Thomas Boyd
Costumes: Judanna Lynn

Bull fighting, gypsies, comedy, romance and show-stopping dance numbers explode onto the stage of the Capitol Theatre when Ballet West presents one of the world’s most well-loved bravura ballets based on Cervantes’ classic story, taking audiences on the road with the fanciful adventures of the eccentric Man of La Mancha, the antics of the Village Barber Basilio, and the passions of his beautiful young lover Kitri. Set to joyous music by Ludwig Minkus, this production is based on the original 1869 version by Marius Petipa and is choreographed by renowned artist Anna-Marie Holmes, the first American dancer to train and dance in Soviet Russia.

PROGRAM 4 – April 13, 14, 18,-21, 2012

(Utah Premiere)
Music: Gabriel Faure
Choreography: George Balanchine
Costumes: Karinska

The Lottery
(World Premiere)
Music: Robert Moran
Choreography: Val Caniparoli
Sets and Costumes: Sandra Woodall

Petite Mort
(Utah Premiere)
Music: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Choreography: Jiri Kylian
Costumes: Joke Visser 

Based on Shirlee Jackson’s The Lottery – one of the most famous short stories in American literature – this world premiere tells the chilling tale of conformity gone mad. Conceived and choreographed by Val Caniparoli, choreographer of such audience favorites as Lambarena and the Lady of The Camellias, and with a newly commissioned score by composer Robert Moran, this production is a major event in the world of ballet. The evening opens with the Utah premiere of George Balanchine’s lush and romantic Emeralds to music by Gabriel Faure. This is the first ballet in Balanchine’s masterful full evening trilogy Jewels. Rounding out the program is the Utah premiere of Jiri Kylian’s sensual work of genius, Petite Mort, set to two of Mozart’s most beautiful and popular piano concertos.

PROGRAM 5 Innovations 2012, May 18, 19 and 23-26, 2012

Since its inception, Ballet West’s Innovations has become a platform for up-and-coming American choreographers. This year’s Innovations 2012 will spotlight new creations by Ballet West artists, present an expanded version of Principal Artist Michael Bearden’s Descent, and in celebration of the 5th successful year of Innovations, the return of Susan Shields’ vibrant 2008 Grand Synthesis.