Anyone keeping an eye on the expansion of the Joffrey ballet’s repertoire in recent seasons – and its richly adventurous devotion to adding new and established contemporary works to its treasurey of classics – will not only understand why the company’s artistic director, Ashley Wheater, is to be awarded the prestigious University of Chicago Jesse L. Rosenberger Medal at the University of Chicago’s 523rd convocation on June 13.
As a reminder of just how Wheater has introduced both his dancers and his audiences to such work, you need look no further than the company’s “MILLENNIALS” program this fall. Single tickets for the run, Sept. 16-20 at the Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Congress, will go on sale June 1. The performances sync ideally with the arrival of EXPO Chicago, The International Exposition of Contemporary & Modern Art, that will exhibit Sept. 17–20, 2015 at Navy Pier’s Festival Hall, 600 E. Grand.
The Joffrey triple-bill will include:
+ The world premiere of an as yet untitled work by Myles Thatcher, a choreographer who dances with the San Francisco Ballet, who is using the music of Steve Reich.
+ The world premiere of another as yet untitled work by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa (whose ballet, “A Streetcar named Desire,” wowed audiences at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance this spring). Ochoa, who collaborates closely with her dancers and has a fierce improvisational talent, is setting her still unnamed piece to music by Michael Gordon.
+ The Joffrey debut of choreographer Christopher Wheeldon’s “Fool’s Paradise,” to music by Joby Talbot. In this work, Wheeldon, who has been nominated for two Tony Awards as director and choreographer of the new hit Broadway musical, “An American in Paris,” uses golden lighting that captures falling glittery petals as the dancers’ bodies form a series of living sculptures.
Performances are Sept. 16, 2015 at 7:30pm; Sept. 18 at 7:30pm; Sept. 19 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; and Sept. 20 at 2 p.m. For tickets ($32-$155), call (800) 982-2787 or visit http://www.joffrey.org/millennials.