The universal language of dance ignites a fusion of cultures, sounds, and expression in Val Caniparoli’s Lambarena. Bach, ballet, and traditional African Dance and music join forces for a seamless, unique theatrical experience. Join Milwaukee Ballet for its premiere of this work which has lit up stages for more than 20 years.
The program is a triple bill and will also feature brand-new works by Italy’s Enrico Morelli and the United Kingdom’s George Williamson.
Top photo by Jennifer Zmuda | Courtesy of BalletMet
Grace-Anne Powers. Courtesy of BalletMet. Photo Jennifer Zmuda.
"the dancers’ energy was infectious, the music and costumes bright..."
- Bach Track
Ballet Meets Bach
Caniparoli created Lambarena on San Francisco Ballet in 1995 after being inspired by Pierre Akendengue and Hughes de Courson’s composition “Lambarena,” which blends Bach with traditional African music. During rehearsals, Caniparoli had the dancers learn technique from African Dance and music specialists Dr. Zakarya Diouf and Naomi Diouf. Though an abstract work, Lambarena evokes themes that defy boundaries: community, ceremony, and connection to nature.
Lambarena’s cultural fusion also emerges in its costumes, which draw inspiration from the colors and patterns of traditional African clothing.
Left photo: Karen Wing & Romel Frometa | Courtesy of BalletMet | Photo by Jennifer Zmuda
New Work Happens Here
Milwaukee Ballet continues its tradition of presenting new work by presenting world premieres by Enrico Morelli and George Williamson alongside Lambarena.
UK native George Williamson has acquired an impressive resume, having choreographed for the national companies of England, Lithuania, The Netherlands, and Poland. He won our Genesis 2017 competition and returns with a new piece.
Enrico Morelli is an acclaimed dancer, choreographer, and teacher. In 2001, he received the Silver Medal of the President of the Italian Republic in recognition for his accomplishments as a dancers. Morelli won the Audience Choice Award in Genesis 2017, and presents a new contemporary work.
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Michael Pink is the longest serving artistic director in Milwaukee Ballet’s history. Since arriving in 2002, he has demonstrated his commitment to the future of dance through new work, education, and collaboration. His artistic vision for Milwaukee Ballet continues to excite and challenge.