World-Famous Joffrey Ballet Returns To L.A. This Weekend

January 29, 2013
LAist
Ben Widdey

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Back in the day, and by this we are referring to the early 20th century, Los Angeles was a very young American city. Ably fitting into the label of "the wild west," our town was home to many innovative pursuits that have since become part of the normal day-to-day. Film, television and lots of artistic energies were housed here, given direct and indirect support and thrived. Nascent cinema brought writers now considered part of the foundation for the century's literary development into "the hood," and new music was given sanctuary here, as well.

 

Enter Russian immigrant/composer Igor Stravinsky in the 1930s. Already globally acknowledged as a musical convention-breaker with (amongst other work) his 1913 score for Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes' scandalous production of Vaslav Nijinsky's "Le Sacre du Printemps" ("The Rite of Spring"), the composer settled here in Hollywood. Having previously lived in France and Switzerland, 50-ish Stravinsky remained here for the bulk of his life.

In honor of this homeboy pride and the 100 year anniversary of the dance's premiere in France, the 10th anniversary of the Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at the Music Center series brings the nationally-treasured Joffrey Ballet to The Music Center's Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for three performances this weekend.

Also included in this program are three other ballets of significant stature. At each evening or Sunday afternoon performance, the company presents the "Sacre" along with either the West Coast premiere of Stanton Welch's "Son of Chamber Symphony" (set on the John Adams aural composition of the same name) or ex-New York City Ballet resident choreographer Christopher Wheeldon's "After the Rain," internationally renowned William Forsythe's "In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated" and globally active Edwaard Liang's Jane Austen-inspired "Age of Innocence."

Wow. Sounds like more than an impressive set of options and activities. There's also a daylong "Rite of Spring" symposium with academics and scholars going on Saturday and a year's worth of exciting related events worth attending thereafter. Click here for more info, and buy tickets here.