Music: Frederic Chopin (Polonaise “Militaire”, 1838; Berceuse, Op. 57, 1843; Prelude, Op. 28, No. 18, 1831?-1839; Prelude, Op. 28, No. 16, 1831?-1839; Waltz in E Minor [Posth], c. 1830; Prelude, Op. 28, No. 7, 1831?-1839; Prelude, Op. 28, No. 4, 1831?-1839; Mazurka in G Major [Posth.], 1829; Ballade, Op. 47, No. 3, 1841), orchestrated by Clare Grundman
Choreography: Jerome Robbins
Staging: Judith Fugate
Scenic Design: Edward Gorey
Costume Design: Irene Sharaff
Lighting Design: Jennifer Tipton, recreated by Nicole Pearce
Duration: 31 minutes
Premiere: March 6, 1956; New York City Ballet
Pacific Northwest Ballet Premiere: September 15, 2007
The 2007 Seattle premiere of The Concert (or, The Perils of Everybody) was generously underwritten by Ernest & Diane Burgess and Glenn Kawasaki.
Choreographer Jerome Robbins wrote: “One of the pleasures of attending a concert is the freedom to lose oneself in listening to the music. Quite often, unconsciously, mental pictures and images form and the patterns and paths of these reveries are influenced by the music itself, or its program notes, or by the personal dreams, problems, and fantasies of the listener. Chopin’s music, in particular, has been subject to fanciful ‘program’ names, such as the Butterfly Etude, the Minute Waltz, the Raindrop Prelude, etc.”
Choreographed in 1956, Jerome Robbins’ The Concert is a comic spoof of a classical music concert. The setting is an all-Chopin recital where the attendees allow their decidedly imaginative minds to wander. When the resulting images are danced, human foibles and insecurities are revealed as Robbins brings each fantasy comically and vividly to life. A genuine crowd-pleaser, The Concert illustrates Robbins’ remarkable insight into the delightful imperfections of human relationships and, in the midst of the laughter, enlightens us all.
Frederic Chopin (1810-1849), born in Poland, was one of the most important innovators for the piano, both in terms of composition and playing style. He influenced future composers, especially those of the French and Russian schools, and the musical level he attained made possible future piano innovations.
Notes compiled by Doug Fullington.
Contributing Artists for the 2018 Performance
Judith Fugate is a former principal ballerina with New York City Ballet (NYCB). She danced roles in virtually every ballet in the New York City Ballet repertory, counting among her partners Peter Martins, Mikhail Baryshnikov, and Helgi Tomasson. During her career she toured extensively with groups led by renowned artists such as Mr. Baryshnikov, Cynthia Gregory, and Mr. Martins. Ms. Fugate appeared on Live from Lincoln Center with Ray Charles in Peter Martins’ A Fool for You, and in the Metropolitan Opera’s production of La Traviata, conducted by Placido Domingo, she was partnered by Fernando Bujones and Peter Boal. She left NYCB in 1997 and currently works as repetiteur for the George Balanchine Trust and Jerome Robbins Rights Trust, staging these renowned choreographers’ works worldwide.
Cameron Grant joined New York City Ballet (NYCB) in 1984 and was appointed pianist of the orchestra in 1998. He performed all the company’s major piano ballets, including Jerome Robbins’ Goldberg Variations and George Balanchine’s Davidsbundlertänze. Mr. Grant has been the piano soloist for ballet premieres by Richard Tanner, Robert La Fosse, and Christopher Wheeldon. In 2004, he appeared in the Emmy Award-winning Live from Lincoln Center broadcast of New York City Ballet and performed with the company at Kennedy Center Honors before the President.