See the Final Weekend Performances of Grand Rapids Ballet’s ‘Ballet + Broadway’
By Adrienne Warber
Grand Rapids Ballet will hold three more performances ‘Ballet + Broadway’ production this weekend, which features choreography by the award-winning choreographer of “Hamilton,” Andy Blankenbuehler. The production, which mixes musical theatre dancing with ballet, had a highly successful opening last weekend. Grand Rapids Ballet will perform three shows on April 28-30. Both fans of ballet and musical theatre will enjoy this production that pays homage to the entertainment art of Broadway and ballet.
Combining Ballet with Broadway
Bringing together the elegance of ballet technique with the lively contemporary movement of Broadway-style dancing and music has all of the elements to create an entertaining show. This will also be the first experience of many of the Grand Rapids Ballet dancers to dance Broadway-style choreography. The two dance techniques combined into a movement that is stylized for a Broadway stage. Last weekend’s successful opening demonstrates that the company dancers triumphantly rose to the challenge of combining the two dance styles.
“I have always loved Broadway, even though my performing career took me mainly into ballet,” James Sofranko, Artistic Director at Grand Rapids Ballet, said, “I kept an eye towards Broadway, and I was even lucky enough to perform in the show “Movin’ Out” by Twyla Tharp.”
“Ballet + Broadway” is a fitting end to the highly successful 2022-23 Season, which has showcased the exceptional talent of Grand Rapids Ballet’s dancers. It is no surprise that these dancers can blend two styles of dance and make it their own. Tony-award-winning “Hamilton” choreographer Andy Blankenbuehler came to Grand Rapids Ballet in January to choreograph “Ballet + Broadway” on the dancers. Since then, the dancers have worked hard to blend ballet and Broadway-style dancing and create the masterful performance Grand Rapids Ballet is known for.
“Ballet + Broadway” showcases Grand Rapids Ballet dancers in works that could live easily on the Broadway stage yet require the skill and talents of true ballet dancers,” Sofranko added.
The production includes a variety of story lines and intentions for each piece, which makes them all unique in their own way. “From the toe-tapping Gershwin tunes in “Who Cares?” to the adept storytelling through movement created by Andy Blankenbuehler, to the glamour and intrigue of Old Hollywood, this program will be entertaining like none other you’ve seen from Grand Rapids Ballet!,” Sofranko commented.
‘Ballet + Broadway’ Show Times and Ticket Information
Grand Rapids Ballet will present “Ballet + Broadway” this weekend, April 28-30. Evening shows on April 28 and 29 start at 7:30 p.m. The Sunday, April 30, matinee show starts at 2 p.m. Ticket prices start at $34. Tickets can be purchased online at TicketMaster. Tickets may also be purchased by phone by calling 616-454.4771, ext. 110, or in-person at the Grand Rapids Ballet Box Office. For more information about “Ballet + Broadway,” visit Grand Rapids Ballet’s Facebook page. Dance and Broadway fans should all find something to enjoy in this show!