Grand Rapids Ballet celebrates the return of live ballet with ‘Off the Canvas’
By Adrienne Warber
There is a special magic in a live ballet performance that connects dancer and audience. Experience the magic again this weekend. Grand Rapids Ballet is bringing live shows back in an enjoyable and safe atmosphere. Dance fans can be swept away by the artistry and energy of witnessing dance on stage in person this weekend. Grand Rapids Ballet will present, “Off the Canvas,” at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre in Grand Rapids, MI in three performances on Oct. 15-17. Tickets for both the live show and virtual access are still available.
Grand Rapids Ballet’s “Off the Canvas” – Dance Art
“Off the Canvas” is Grand Rapids Ballet’s first live performance of the 2021-2022 Season at their home venue, Peter Martin Wege Theatre in a year and a half. The return to in-person shows marks the start of the company’s 50th anniversary, the 2021-2022 Season, Moving Forward.
“We are so happy to be back on stage at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre,” said James Sofranko, Grand Rapids Ballet Artistic Director. “This will be the first public performance on our stage since March 2020 and we have certainly missed the thrill of having a live audience. The dancers’ joy to be back is so clear in rehearsal and I can’t wait to see how they embody that energy when they return to performance.”
“Off the Canvas” is comprised of three different ballets by some of the field’s leading choreographers Adam Hougland, Penny Saunders, and Katarzyna Skarpetowska. The production will include beautiful artistic works with both classical ballet and contemporary movement. West Michigan dance fans should enjoy these critically acclaimed works.
“The three choreographers in the ‘Off the Canvas’ have a knack for moving the dancers around the stage in bold strokes the same way an artist might paint on a large canvas,” said Sofranko. “I couldn’t think of a better way to return to the stage to showcase our fantastic company.”
All three ballets in “Off the Canvas” are inspired by works of art, such as a painting, music, book or movie. Internationally renowned choreographer Katarzyna Skarpetowska’s work, “Off the Canvas,” is inspired by Cy Twombly’s “Bacchus” paintings, capturing their passionate circular looping movements, and features music by Adrian Lim-Klumpes and Antonio Vivaldi. Grand Rapids Ballet Resident Choreographer Penny Saunders’ ballet, “In-Frame,” comments on the creative process, set to music by Max Richter, and relates to Antonio Vivaldi’s violin concerto “Four Seasons.” Louisville Baller Principle Choreographer and Cincinnati Baller Resident Choreographer Adam Hougland’s piece, “Cold Virtues,” inspired by the book, “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos and the movie “Dangerous Liaisons,” is about a couple manipulating people for pleasure and the ramifications of their actions, danced to music by Philip Glass.
Dance fans can celebrate the return of Grand Rapids Ballet to the Peter Martin Wege Theatre stage by going to see “Off the Canvas” this weekend by attending in person in Grand Rapids or virtually from any location online.
“Off the Canvas” Ticket Information and Safety Protocols
Grand Rapids Ballet will hold three performances of “Off the Canvas” at 7:30 pm on Friday, Oct. 15 and Saturday, Oct. 16, and at 2 pm Sunday, Oct. 17 at the Peter Martin Wege Theatre in Grand Rapids, MI. Tickets prices start at $32, and can be purchased online at Grand Rapids Ballet or TicketMaster. Tickets can also be purchased by phone by calling (616) 454-4771 ext. 10 or in-person at the Grand Rapids Ballet Box Office.
Not in town this weekend? Attend the show the show from any location virtually. Individual virtual tickets are $18, or purchase the entire 2021-22 Virtual Season https://grballet.com/2122season/virtual-season/ and see all the ballets online for $68. Dance fans of both classical ballet and contemporary movement can find something to enjoy this season, with shows such as “Off the Canvas,” “The Nutcracker,” Jumpstart 2022,” “Cinderella,” and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”
To ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for the audience, dancers and staff, Grand Rapids Ballet requires guests to show proof of full vaccination status or a negative Covid test taken within the last 72 hours of the show for anyone 12 years old and older along with a valid photo id. However, unvaccinated children 11 years old and younger do not have to provide a negative test. Face masks are required regardless of vaccination status. Visit the website for more details on Covid safety protocols.
Learn more details about “Off the Canvas” and the 2021-22 Season by visiting Grand Rapids Ballet’s Facebook page.