Aspen audiences are in for a true treat this winter when dance and music come together in a spectacular collaboration between the Aspen Santa Fe Ballet and Aspen Music Festival and School—marking the first time in ASFB’s 21-year history that dancers are backed by an entire evening of live music. The soundtrack: Robert Schumann’s Carnaval, performed by world-renowned pianist Joyce Yang. The new ballet: a world premiere by legendary Finnish choreographer and ASFB regular Jorma Elo. (The program also features Jiří Kylián’s Return to a Strange Land with the music of Leoš Janáček and Nicolo Fonte’s Where We Left Off with music by Philip Glass, both also performed by Yang.)
The Elo/Yang project started as Yang’s dream child. “I’ve always imagined things when I practice and perform,” says Yang. “It’s all about colors and shapes, and when I realized I could have that, not just in my imagination, but happening before my eyes, it was like being able to see for the first time.” A Van Cliburn International Piano Competition silver medalist and Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient, Yang, encouraged by AMFS, approached the ballet with the idea, and a collaboration was born. Currently in residence with the Boston Ballet, choreographer Elo was the top choice for the project.
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