The Arts

National Ballet of Canada – 24 Preludes by Chopin, A Suite of Dances, The Four Seasons

National Ballet of Canada – 24 Preludes by Chopin, A Suite of Dances, The Four Seasons featured image

Reviewed by Paula Citron

You have to hand it to Karen Kain because she sure knows how to put together a mixed program.

Marie Chouinard’s 24 Preludes by Chopin is a prime example of her eccentric originality.
She takes the metaphor of birds, dresses her dancers in fishnet and leather punk, and presents Chopin’s music, not as drippy romanticism, but as modernesque irony.

Jerome Robbins’ 1994 A Suite of Dances, is a duet for dancer Zdenek Konvalina and cellist Winona Zelenka that is warm, witty, elegant, playful and virtuoso, This 14-minute piece leaves the audience smiling.

James Kudelka’s 1997 The Four Seasons is simply the greatest Canadian contemporary ballet ever. Aleksandar Antonijevic gives a moving performance as The Man, with Jillian Vanstone capturing the delicate innocence of Spring. Sonia Rodriguez as the siren passion of Summer, Rebecca Rimsay as efficient and capable Autumn, and finally, Victoria Bertram as compassionate Winter.

The National Ballet mixed program continues at the Four Seasons Centre until Mar. 7.

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24 Preludes by Chopin, A Suite of Dances, The Four Seasons
National Ballet of Canada
Choreography by Marie Chouinard, Jerome Robbins and James Kudelka
Four Seasons Centre, Mar. 3 to 7, 2010

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