Applegate Dance Company presents ‘Firebird’ ballet, Disney numbers

By June 11, 2011

Monica Fadel dances the title role in the Applegate Dance Company's production of "The Firebird" ballet, June 24-26 at the Brunelle Performance Hall at Davis High School, 315 W. 14th St. The company also will present "The Wonderful World of Disney Dances." Courtesy photo

The Davis-based Applegate Dance Company will present “The Firebird” ballet and “The Wonderful World of Disney Dances” at four performances later this month at the Brunelle Performance Hall at Davis High School, 315 W. 14th St.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, June 24-25, and at 2:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, June 25-26. Tickets are $12 in advance, available at The Avid Reader, 617 Second St., or $14 at the door 45 minutes before each performance.

Approximately 70 children, teen and adult dancers will come together to present “The Wonderful World of Disney Dances” in the first half the program. This fast-paced showcase will feature beloved Disney characters, including Belle, Princess Jasmine, Esmeralda, Little Mermaid and Tinkerbell. One highlight will be a Disney dance scene favorite — the chimney sweeps with Mary Poppins.

Guests will enjoy dazzling choreography, elaborate costumes, professional lighting, special effects and many surprises. Before each performance, guests will have the opportunity to mingle with or take pictures with some of the Disney princesses in the theater lobby.

The second half of the show will feature Igor Stravinsky’s magical, one-act ballet “The Firebird.” Splashes of pure white princesses contrast with dark, unworldly creatures, whose colors come alive under black light as the two parties engage in a battle of good versus evil.

A brilliant red, fiery bird, summoned by a handsome prince, emerges as the heroine. Contrasting dance styles merge into a turbulent cavalcade of colors and action, keeping viewers of all ages engaged throughout.

The role of Prince Ivan will be danced by Sacramento Ballet guest artist Rex Wheeler. The title role of Firebird will be shared by Alexandra Cunningham, also from the Sacramento Ballet, and Monica Fadel, Applegate Dance Company’s concert premiere principal dancer. The role will be understudied by Applegate dancer Jenny Silva.

Princess Larissa will be danced alternately by Applegate dancers Carly Gohring and Marea Newell. The evil Katschei will be performed by Oliver Pavick, who trained at the San Francisco Circus Center.

Choreography for Applegate’s “Firebird” is based on original work by Michel Fokine with a few twists. Artistic director Lisa Applegate-Zimanyi has updated the princesses’ choreography to present a more playful and romantic version. The dance of the evil servants to the famous inferno music has been infused with hip-hop moves by local instructor/performer Q.

The show will last two hours and 20 minutes, including a 20-minute intermission.

Lighting design is by Julien Elstob, and professional backdrops are from Hollywood. Costumes are designed and executed by Rebecca Wendlandt, Stephanie Baltz and Leslie Cooper. For performance and class information, visit http://www.applegatedance.com.

Special to The Enterprise

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