Ballet B.C. wows 'em at Jacob's Pillow

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      Late word that Ballet B.C. received a standing ovation (!) and warm reviews in its first-ever appearance at the prestigious Jacob's Pillow dance festival in Massachusetts.

      The Boston Globe called the strides the company is making "exciting", and referred to the "high balletic ability of these terrific dancers". It described Medhi Walerski's surreal and witty Petite Ceremonie (a hit when it premiered locally) this way: "The movement is often spare — there’s a recurring motif of mincing little rocking steps and staccato, Greek chorus-like arm gestures — but requiring an exactitude that this company delivers with unfussy virtuosity.'

      The paper reserved some of its most enthusiastic praise for artistic director Emily Molnar's own, gleeful Aniel: "There is much angularity and purposeful strangeness in Molnar’s “Aniel” too, but here there’s no missing this piece’s warmly beating heart."

      The Berkshire Eagle said the troupe's energy and determination is striking (no argument there), with a program that was "markedly different, and immensely stimulating in an edge-of-your-seat kind of way." The writer praises A.U.R.A. (Anarchist Unit Related to Art)'s tableaux (choreographed by Jacopo Godani) as "stunning", and calls out a few dancers for special mention: "Darren Devaney offered some ambitious leaps, Livona Ellis drifted arrogantly among relationships, and Gilbert Small sealed it all with an air kiss to the audience."

      The company now heads to Festival des arts de Saint-Sauveur in Quebec on July 25 and 26--no doubt with a little extra wind beneath their wings. Not bad for the company's first touring dates since its near-demise in 2009, with high praise on an eastern Canadian visit  and for a White Bird appearance earlier this year, too. Huge strides for a deserving company.