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Balletto di Gala 2014 - Dancing With Our Stars

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

On April 12, 2014, the Colorado Ballet Auxiliary will host its annual Balletto di Gala celebration, Dancing With Our Stars. Taking place at The Ritz-Carlton, Denver, this black-tie event promises a glamorous evening of entertainment, dancing, dinner, and more! Balletto di Gala is the largest annual fundraiser for Colorado Ballet Auxiliary, a vital cultural force in the Denver arts community. Proceeds from this event will support Colorado Ballet, Colorado’s world-class professional dance company. Cocktails will begin at 5:30 p.m. followed by dinner at 7 p.m. There will be a silent auction, a live auction, and special performances from community leaders paired with professional dancers of Colorado Ballet.

This one-night event will serve to benefit a wide range of Colorado Ballet’s artistic initiatives. Your attendance at Balletto di Gala will ultimately support the community education and outreach programming, students of the Colorado Ballet Academy, and Colorado Ballet’s professional Company.

Gala Co-Chair, Kris McMullan, said “we have been able to feature such great community leaders at the Balletto di Gala; the Auxiliary feels fortunate to have one of the premiere dance galas of the season that raises money for such a great cause.”

Colorado Ballet is thrilled for this year’s lineup. Former Denver Broncos guard, Zane Beadles, will be dancing with Morgan Buchanan. SVP of Investor Relations and Business Development for Boulder Brands, Carole Buyers, will be paired with Dmitry Trubchanov. Co-host of the Country Morning KYGO Ryno and Tracy Show, Tracey Dixon, will be dancing with Kevin Wilson. 9 News reporter Colleen Ferreria will be paired with Sean Omandam. Former Denver Broncos running back and professional broadcaster and motivational speaker, Reggie Rivers, will be dancing with Tracy Jones, and president of Paragon Homes Inc., Ed Venerable will be dancing with Maria Mosina.

We hope you will join us on Saturday, April 12, 2014, for a very special evening to celebrate and support Colorado Ballet.

For more information on Colorado Ballet Auxiliary please visit - http://coloradoballetaux.org/.

For ticket information to Balletto di Gala please, please click here.

Colorado Ballet Interviews Kevin Wilson - One of the Cinderella Stepsisters

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Featuring an interview with Colorado Ballet's Kevin Wilson and rehearsal video of artists of Colorado Ballet

Colorado Ballet's Cinderella - Cinderella & Prince Rehearsal

Wednesday, February 05, 2014


Featuring Artists of Colorado Ballet

Buyer Beware – Tickets for Sale on Outside Websites

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Maria Mosina in "Cinderella"
Photo by David Andrews

Where is the best place to buy tickets for Colorado Ballet performances?  Recently, some of our customers have had issues when purchasing tickets through outside vendor websites.  We encourage our patrons to buy directly through our website, www.coloradoballet.org, because our staff can assist with any problems or changes.  We do not work with or endorse any outside ticketing websites with the exception of Altitude Tickets (formerly known as TicketHorse) at www.altitudetickets.com.  Occasionally, we will also sell tickets to select performances through Travelzoo and LivingSocial.  If you purchase tickets through a different ticketing vendor, we cannot guarantee the quality of ticketing services and cannot help with any problems.

What you see is what you get when you buy tickets through www.coloradoballet.org.  Outside vendor websites may charge large processing fees, but all taxes and fees are included in the price of tickets through our website for print-at-home tickets, so a $50 ticket is $50.  The only additional fee is a nominal fee if you want your tickets mailed or placed at will call.

We don’t want our customers to get scammed.  Please purchase through www.coloradoballet.org or through www.altitudetickets.com only.

Thank you for supporting Colorado Ballet!

Go Broncos!

Friday, January 31, 2014
Go Broncos! From Colorado Ballet dancers and staff.
#UnitedInOrange

CINDERELLA – Comparing and contrasting the 1950 Walt Disney animated classic film VS the 1970 choreographed Ben Stevenson ballet

Friday, January 24, 2014
  1. In both versions, Cinderella’s mother passes away and her father remarries
  2. In Stevenson’s version, the fairy godmother was once a beggar woman who Cinderella had given bread to
  3. In Disney’s version, Cinderella’s mice friends had sewn her a pink dress for the ball before it got destroyed by her evil stepsisters
  4. In Stevenson’s version, the fairy godmother turns Cinderella’s kitchen into a forest, complete with dragonflies, whereas in Disney’s version Cinderella meets her fairy godmother outside under a tree
  5. In both versions, the fairy godmother gives Cinderella a pair of glass slippers and turns her rags into a gown
  6. In both versions, the fairy godmother turns a pumpkin into a magical coach
  7. In Disney’s version, the mice get turned into horses, whereas in Stevenson’s version four lizards are turned into the horses
  8. In both versions, Cinderella leaves behind one of her glass slippers while rushing out of the ball at midnight
  9. In Stevenson’s version, the prince comes to Cinderella’s house to try to find the owner of the glass slipper, and as Cinderella sits down to try it on her second slipper falls out of her pocket, which is when the prince realizes it was her at the ball and asks for her hand in marriage.
  10. In Disney’s version, when Cinderella goes to try on the glass slipper presented only by the Duke, her evil stepmother trips the Duke causing the glass slipper to fall and shatter. Cinderella then pulls the second slipper out of her apron and proves to the Duke that it fits. Cinderella and the mice are then taken by the Duke to the castle where the prince awaits. 
  11. In both versions, Cinderella’s evil stepsisters both try forcing the glass slipper on before Cinderella gets to, proving that their feet were way too big to fit.
  12. In Stevenson’s version, Cinderella ends up forgiving her stepmother and stepsisters for their cruelty to her, whereas Disney’s version doesn’t mention what happens to them after. 
  13. In both versions, Cinderella and the prince live happily ever after!

Colorado Ballet's Cinderella - Stepsisters Rehearsal PART 2

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Featuring Artists of Colorado Ballet.

Pointe Shoes by Sharon Wehner

Thursday, September 26, 2013

By Sharon Wehner, Colorado Ballet Principal Dancer

Pointe shoes.  They are to a ballerina what a bicycle is to a competitive cyclist, a pair of skates to a figure skater, a set of clubs to a golfer.  Both functional and aesthetic, they are an integral part of her artistry, indeed her life. There are dozens of brands of pointe shoes, and hundreds of sub-types within those brands.  They may all be pink and satin, but beyond the simple traditional exterior (which has maintained the same fundamental look since Marie Taglioni first donned a pair to appear as a weightless sylph in La Sylphide in 1832), they have evolved vastly in terms of materials and support.  Taglioni’s pointe shoes were little more than soft ballet slippers with extra darning on the tips and sides.  Modern pointe shoes, first worn by Anna Pavlova at the beginning of the last century, consist of two key structural components: a re-inforced box at the end to support the tips of the toes, and a firm shank along the sole to support the arch.  Materials used to construct them may include cardboard, paper, glue, fabric, and even fiberglass.  The various “models” of pointe shoes are meant to address a wide range of the ballerina’s needs and foot shape.  Imagine the variety of running shoes on the market today--pointe shoes are just as specialized.

Beyond this, a ballerina must prepare the shoe to her specific liking before she can dance in it.  A pointe shoe arrives without ribbons or elastic, because everyone likes to sew them differently depending on their needs.  They also must be broken-in to conform to each dancer’s foot.  Some people take a hammer to them, some bang them on concrete, some bend them in the crook of a door.  When I get a pair of shoes, I spend about 3 hours preparing them before I ever put them on my feet.  I darn the tips (a practice that some dancers prefer because it evens out the platform of the box, and also makes the shoe “quieter” and less slippery), I sew on ribbons and elastic, I cut the shanks on the inside so that it bends in the proper place of my arch, I cut the satin off the tips, I pour a teaspoon of good old-fashioned shellac on the inside and let it soak in overnight (this extends the life of the shoe), and lastly I place a small strip of Dr. Scholl’s foot and shoe padding on the inside to allow for the uneven length of my toes.  Throughout the lifespan of any one pair of shoes, I will continue to “doctor them up”--my lunch break is often spent re-darning the tips to get a few more “wearings” out of the pair. 

My first experience with pointe shoes harkens back to the age of 9.  I had just been accepted to the summer intensive program at San Francisco Ballet.  Nine is relatively young to start en pointe, but since the summer program required at least some pointework, my teachers started me early.  I had been dancing since the age of 3, so my feet, legs and core were strong enough to handle the shoes.  I remember going with my mother to get my first pair--it was like Christmas.  We purchased the smallest size possible.  The minute I got home, I disobeyed my teacher’s restrictions.  I put them on and danced around my bedroom, even took them out to the front yard and dirtied them up on the sidewalk.  It was magical. 

My first pointe class consisted of 15 minutes at the barre.  To some, it was a bit of torture--the painfully slow rises through the instep and toes, the quick jarring springs up over the arch, the burning repetition--releve, eleve, echappe, passe-- over and over again.  To me, it was heavenly.  Even my first blister, which left some of my friends sobbing after class, I cherished.  It was like a badge of courage, a rite of passage in the ballerina’s journey from childhood into adolescence.  Blisters, corns, bunions, bruised toenails, even losing toenails--they all came par for the course in the world of pointe.  They still do... Along with the first pointe class, a budding ballerina must learn to cope with all the ailments of the feet.  Tape, band-aids, corn pads, New Skin liquid bandage, Second Skin burn pads (for blisters), Ambesol numbing ointment, Neosporin, epsom salts, Betodine, rubbing alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, Tiger Balm, Arnica--all friends to the ballerina’s foot.  And as a professional, nothing beats a bucket of ice in which to plunge the feet after a hard day’s work.  I have one set up under my dinner table. 

A common question I get about pointe shoes is: “how long do they last?”  There is no short answer, because different ballets require different levels of hardness, or what a ballerina refers to as “deadness”.  On a scale of 1-10, a brand new pair of shoes would be a 1 in terms of deadness.  For a ballet like Swan Lake, I use three different pairs for each act.  Act Two requires a shoe that is about 4 on the level of “deadness,” Act Three requires a harder 2 to withstand the 32 fouettes, Act Four can suffice with a softer 7 or 8.  Of course this will be different for every ballerina.  I have known some dancers who will change their shoes in the wings during their partner’s two minute variation, just so that she will have the perfect pair for her next dance. 

As you can see, pointe shoes are a very personal and specialized part of a ballerina’s career.  In her lifetime, she will spend more hours sewing and preparing shoes, caring for the aches and pains of the feet, and training her body to withstand the rigors of pointework-- than she actually will performing on stage.  It is a love-hate relationship that a ballerina has with her shoes.  But most ballerinas would agree that the sacrifices made to create the effect of being light on her feet are well worth it. Pointe shoes are part of what gives the ballerina her effervescence and mystical weightlessness.  Like Victoria Page in The Red Shoes, dancing en pointe is not just dancing, it is living.  And, to me at least, a life without pointe shoes would feel just a bit less magical.

Interview with Francisco Estevez about Giselle

Monday, September 23, 2013


This video has rehearsal clips featuring artists of Colorado Ballet rehearsing Giselle.

Dancer Q&A: Domenico Luciano

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Colorado Ballet is starting a new dancer Q&A part of its blog.  The first Q&A is with our new Soloist, Domenico Luciano.

  1. Where are you from?
    Naples, Italy
  2. Where did you train/dance before coming to Colorado Ballet?
    I trained at the Real Teatro di San Carlo Ballet School in Naples, Italy.
    I danced throughout Europe and Italy before coming to the States in 2004 to join Tulsa Ballet and then Dominic Walsh Dance Theater in 2005.
  3. What did you do with your summer break?
    I usually guest with other companies, teach and go visit my family in Italy for a little vacation by the gulf of Napoli.
  4. What age did you first start dancing?
    Pretty late, I was 14 years old.
  5. What was your first ballet you remember attending? What do you remember about it?
    The first ballet I attended was GISELLE with Etoile Alessandra Ferri in the leading role, and Johann Cobborg from Royal Ballet as Albrecht.
    I was captivated and transported by the magic of the performance. I didn't want it to end. As student of the ballet school, I was able to go every night for more.
  6. Who are your ballet role models? Dancers that inspire you.
    I like dancers that are brave and courageous, want to be challenged and explore all the different style of dance out there. I love all the projects that Wendy Whelan is working on right now. It shows how, as an artist, you never stop learning and growing. After a long and successful career as a Principal Dancer with NYCB, she is diving into new territory, like modern and contemporary dance, with a joy and excitement. It is what Mikhail Baryshnikov and Sylvie Guillem have done as well.
    At this moment, my male ballet role model is David Hallberg. I think he has a very special presence on stage, besides an amazing technique and quality of movement.
  7. Proudest moment in your ballet career?
    Dancing the leading role in John Cranko's ONEGIN, feeling very connected to the role and getting emotional on stage.
  8. Favorite ballets to dance? Which are your favorite to watch?
    I never get tired of listening and watching Swan Lake.
  9. Dream role?
    I would love to dance Petit Mort by Jiri Kylian.
  10.  If you could never dance again, what would you want your final role to be?
    It is hard to pick one. I definitively would want to dance a role that could give me the chance to share with the audience something special that would be remembered.
  11. What do you like to do when you aren’t dancing (your free time)?
    I'm new to Colorado, so I have a lot to explore in Denver and around!
  12. What are some of your indulgences?
    I'm Italian…bread, pasta and pizza
  13. Do you have any pre-performance routines/rituals?
    Yes!
    Of course!
    Timing is key for me.
    I like to have everything planned ahead before curtain is up.
    Time of arrival to the theater
    Time for warm up
    Time for class
    Time for make up
    Time to get in costume
    Time to practice on stage
    Maybe I sound a bit OCD….
    LOL
    Oh well, if it all helps.
  14. What production(s) are you most excited about this year?
    This is my first year with Colorado Ballet, it is all exciting to me!!!
  15. What would you say to people who come to see the Colorado Ballet?
    Come and see Colorado Ballet, it is a Company that has a great combination of athleticism and classicism. Colorado Ballet maintains the beautiful and historical tradition of classical ballet delivered by powerful bodies that have a deep knowledge and respect for the craft.

Domenico Luciano as Albrecht in "Giselle"
Photo by Alessio Boccafusca

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