July 31, 2012 00:00 By Pawit Mahasarinand
The Bangkok City Ballet and its guests balance tradition and creation
The Bangkok City Ballet is getting back to classical dance after failing to sell out its all-contemporary production in 2010
“Thailand’s only professional ballet company”, led by Japanese-expatriate veteran teacher Masako Hirata, showed some promise with its contemporary works, and this Thursday there are more, created by the company’s dancers and choreographers as well as guest artists.
The two-part programme will begin with Ruangyut “Aun” Srakaew’s group piece “Eclipse”, featuring 19 dancers and original music by Chartchai Pongprapapan, Shigeru Umebayashi and Wachirapilan Chokcharoenrat.
The 15-minute piece is based on the Asian superstition that the lunar eclipse is caused by the god Rahu angrily swallowing the Moon and Sun goddesses.
Guests Emma d’Humieres and Bernard Courtot de Bouteiller will follow with the six-minute duet “The Appearances”. The Ballet National de Paris awarded d’Humieres a “most promising dancer” prize in 2010.
Courtot de Bouteiller, a former principal dancer at the Paris Opera Ballet, choreographed this segment and designed the lighting and costumes. It’s inspired by the way upper-class people fret about their appearance.
French expatriate Patrice Leroy will next present his “Gravity and Attraction”, exploring the weight of love. Rounding out the first part will be Nathanael Marie’s “Dance into the Light”, featuring his colleague from Le Ballet du Grand Theatre de Geneve, Sarawanee “Pik” Tanatanit, and four other young Thai dancers.
The programme will turn more traditional after the intermission, and fans of the grand pas de deux will be especially delighted.
Guest ballet master Miroslav Misha Birmancev Bart will recreate Marius Petipa’s masterpieces that were set in India.
The second act of “La Bayadere”, with Austrian maestro Leon Minkus’s original composition, will feature Yuko Nakamura and Wasin “Tam” Sonsaising in lead roles, and the grand pas de deux from the third act presents two Thai veterans, Tirolarn “Ting” Krityakierne and Ruangyut “Aun” Srakaew.
Meuanphun “Orn” Ampunsang and Anurak “Fiat” Ngamta will follow in another grand pas de deux from “Talisman”, with original music by Russian maestro Riccardo Drigo.
Finally, d’Humieres and Courtot de Bouteiller will return in “La Source Grand pas de Deux”. Courtot de Bouteiller has danced in many corners of the world, from Chile to China, in a wide variety of works ranging from Vaslav Nijinsky to William Forsythe. With music extracts from Leo Delibes’s “Sylvia”, he was inspired by George Balanchine and has kept all the elements of classical pas de deux intact in this creation that premiered five years ago at the Grand Theatre de Montpellier.
See the BCB August Dance Performance 2012 on Thursday at 2pm or 7pm at M Theatre on New Phetchaburi Road, between Ekamai and Thong Lor.
Seats cost Bt1,000 (Bt500 for students) at www.ThaiTicketMajor.com and Tokyodo Books at the Emporium, or by calling the BCB at (02) 662 7933.
Find out more on the “BangkokCityBallet” page on Facebook.