West Hartford-based Ballet Theatre Company’s production of ‘Aladdin’ will be performed live on stage at The Bushnell in April.
Ballet Theatre Company (BTC), located in West Hartford, CT, will be showcasing their newest production of “Aladdin” at The Bushnell’s Belding Theater beginning on April 23, 2022, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., as well as a third performance on April 24 at 3 p.m.
Aladdin is choreographed by Stephanie Dattellas (“Cinderella,” “The Nutcracker”). Choreography for the production began in 2019, with its premiere set in 2020, however due to the pandemic, it was postponed until now.
Dattellas’ process for the storyline was created through her research on “One Thousand and One Nights,” a collection of Middle Eastern and South Asian folk tales that were originally published together during the Islamic Golden Age. The stories, from historical tales to tragic romances to comedies, were collected over many centuries by a huge range of scholars and authors.
Instead of presenting an interpretive or non-culture-emerging ballet of these cultural manifestations, Dattellas invited collaboration from two choreographers who represent communities that are being depicted in the production’s storyline.
Partners include, Rachna Ramya Agrawal, who will be performing as Aladdin’s mother in the production. Rachna has co-choreographed scenes to integrate Kathak, one of the eight forms of Indian classical dance. Rachna outlined how “This is the first time an Indian dancer has been invited to collaborate with a Ballet dance company in the state of Connecticut.”
Julie Lai of Asian Performing Arts has choreographed a traditional Chinese dance featured in the close of the performance.
The musical score is composed by Carl Davis CBE (“Cyrano”) and performed by the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Leading the production in the starring role will be Connecticut resident and Ballet Theatre Company artist Jo-ann Burke. The entire cast will feature eight professional ballet dancers as part of Ballet Theatre Company’s resident company, performing leading roles such as The Princess, The Maghrib, and Diamond Lead.
Diversity in casting leading roles is a standard practice for Ballet Theatre Company. Two guest performers from the American Repertory Ballet, will perform the leading roles of Aladdin and the Djinn, as well as a NYC performer cast as the Emerald Male Lead. The cast will also feature 53 students from The School of Ballet Theatre Company.
Lead Designer and Head Costumer Pat Numberger and her team have created 184 brand new pieces for the performance.
Tickets for Ballet Theatre Company’s Aladdin at The Maxwell M. and Ruth R. Belding Theater can be purchased on The Bushnell website.
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