by Paula Citron
The success of the National Ballet’s first gala last year has ensured that the concert will be an annual event. The second gala called “Mad Hot Ballet” further defined artistic director Karen Kain’s vision.
While most ballet galas tend to include visiting superstars, the National’s evening featured only company dancers which makes it a wonderful showcase for the home team. Kain also singled out recent promotions, while providing emerging choreographers with a career boost. New principal dancer Zdenek Konvalina also had a solo.
“Mad Hot Ballet” was certainly very well programmed with a taste of both the old and the new. The fun and games of Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s “Elite Syncopations” began the concert, while the ending was the glittering neo-classical finale of George Balanchine’s “Symphony in C”.
Other works were by James Kudelka, Maurice Béjart, Sabrina Matthews, and company member Lisa Robinson.
This gala proved that the National Ballet is looking very, very good these days.
From the Four Seasons Centre, I’m Paula Citron, arts reviewer for CLASSICAL 96.3 FM.