My write-up of the San Francisco Ballet 2009 season in today’s Chronicle:
“San Francisco Ballet will unveil an all-new production of “Swan Lake” by Artistic Director Helgi Tomasson in 2009 as the centerpiece of its 76th season, along with a world premiere by resident choreographer Yuri Possokhov, the return of George Balanchine’s full-evening “Jewels” and a program dedicated to works by reigning modern dance master Mark Morris.
The new “Swan Lake” marks an investment in the classics after the forward-looking New Works Festival that crowned this year’s 75th anniversary. Six of the 10 ballets unveiled during that festival will return next year, including Christopher Wheeldon’s intimate “Within the Golden Hour” and Jorma Elo’s blood-pumping “Double Evil.”
But Tomasson said the time was right, 20 years after his first staging of “Swan Lake” for the Ballet, to revisit the Tchaikovsky/Petipa classic with subtle new ideas and a larger budget. The sets and costumes will be designed by Jonathan Fensom, acclaimed for his work on Broadway but doing his first work for ballet. The production will put no major revisionist twists on the iconic story, but will use video projections and other multimedia effects to create more theatrical spectacle than the old staging.
On the contemporary side, the all-Morris program marks 15 years of his association with San Francisco Ballet with three works created for its dancers: the intricate and Baroque “A Garden”; the daffy “Sandpaper Ballet”; and “Joyride,” to commissioned music by John Adams, which premiered at the New Works Festival. The other New Works Festival ballets returning are Possokhov’s “Fusion,” Stanton Welch’s “Naked” and Val Caniparoli’s “Ibsen’s House.” ”
Click here for the rest, including Tudor, Robbins, and Forsythe on tap.
And click here for a podcast interview with Helgi Tomasson. I say about five words total over the course of it. Most of the interviewing you’ll hear is deputy arts and entertainment editor Leba Hertz.