When Colorado Ballet Artistic Director Gil Boggs planned a program centered on Colorado’s heritage in the arts, he decided to begin with Lynne …
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When Colorado Ballet Artistic Director Gil Boggs planned a
program centered on Colorado’s heritage in the arts, he decided to
begin with Lynne Taylor Corbett’s “Great Galloping Gottschalk.”
Taylor-Corbett is a Littleton High graduate, an award-winning
director and choreographer, who works internationally. Boggs and
Taylor-Corbett are longtime friends through American Ballet
Theatre, she said.
She originally choreographed this light-hearted work for Mikhail
Baryshnikov at American Ballet Theatre in 1982, set to music by
19th century American composer/pianist Louis Moreau Gottschalk.
She laughs, recalling her conversation with the great Russian
dancer, who became artistic director of the ABT after his amazing
dance career. She had a commission to create a new work and no
particular idea what it should look like, so she asked for his
suggestion. He just said “just do next ballet” by way of guidance!
She was wandering in a record store when the bright cover of a
recording of piano music by Gottschalk caught her attention and the
music stayed with her.
She contacted composer/friend and previous collaborator Victoria
Bond to orchestrate the music and “Great Galloping Gottschalk”
premiered in Miami.
There are six piano pieces, which will be played on two pianos.
(Appropriate since Gottschalk, a rock star sort of entertainer in
his time, used to tour the east coast by train, with his piano in
tow). Taylor-Corbett says there are 17 dancers involved in this
fairly complicated piece.
She was in Denver for a week early in August to “set the piece”
on Colorado Ballet’s dancers, then left Jeffrey Gribler, her
official Great Galloping Gottshalk interpreter to continue work
with the dancers while she headed to China to mount a new work with
an American dance company related to the Great Wall of China.
Gribler is a longtime dancer with Philadelphia Ballet, who retired
and is ballet master there.
“All Pointes West,” the start-up of Colorado Ballet’s 2009-10
season, opens with “Great Galloping Gottschalk,“ followed by two
excerpts: from Marius Petipa‘s “Sleeping Beauty” and Dwight
Rhoden’s “Ave Maria.” Agnes de Mille’s ever-popular “Rodeo,” set to
Aaron Copland’s score, will conclude the program.
Boggs, who just signed a five year renewed contract, announced
the 2009-10 season, including “Don Quixote” in October; “The
Nutcracker” in November/December; “Beauty and the Beast” in
February and a mixed program that will include a world premier by
New York choreographer Brian Reeder, Anthony Tudor’s “Echoing of
Trumpets” and Lila York’s popular “Celts.”
Some young dancers in “The Nutcracker” will come from the south
area’s Academy of Colorado Ballet, in its new five studio location
at 4181 County Line Road, Centennial. For information, visit
or call 303-221-1722.
If you go:
“All Pointes West,” . Colorado Ballet performances: 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Sept. 11 and Saturday, Sept. 12; 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12
and Sunday, Sept. 13 at the Newman Center, East Iliff Avenue at
South University Boulevard, University of Denver. Tickets: $19 to
$109, 303-837-8888, www.coloradoballet.org.
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