The Joffrey Ballet announced the world premiere of Boleronamed after the acclaimed orchestral piece by composer Maurice Ravel and choreographed by Joffrey company artist Yoshihisa Araion Feb. 12 at 7 p.m.
Bolero, to be performed by 15 members of the company, will be filmed at the Gerald Arpino Black Box Theatre at Joffrey Tower and streamed for free via the Joffrey's YouTube channel, youtube.com/TheJoffreyBallet.
Notably, this marks the first performance since The Joffrey's winter program, The Times Are Racing, which opened at the Auditorium Theatre exactly one year prior on Feb. 12, 2020.
Bolero is a 16-minute work originally intended to be performed by Studio Company members of the Joffrey Academy of Dance, Official School of The Joffrey Ballet, at the Joffrey's Center Stage event in 2020. As the COVID-19 pandemic forced the Joffrey to change direction, Ashley Wheater MBE, The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of The Joffrey Ballet, approached Arai with an opportunity to create a new work for the main company. With the music established, Arai began working out the details for a more robust piece with a larger cast.
The production features eight men and seven women, with company artist Anais Bueno as the featured performer. Veteran company artist Temur Suluashvili designed the costumes, focusing on a minimal and classic Japanese dance look with the men in Kabuki pants and women in floating skirts over nude leotards, with large black pearls adorning their necks; the costumes include face masks, adding to the theatrical look.
Bolero is part of the company's recently announced Joffrey Studio Series, a comprehensive roster of free, virtual programmingfrom livestream performances and rehearsals to pre-recorded conversationscurated by Joffrey artists during the COVID-19 era. More information can be found at joffrey.org/studioseries .