On Friday January 31, 2020, the New World Symphony and Miami City Ballet presented a fascinating program of Stravinsky and Balanchine at the New World Center on Miami Beach to a capacity audience. The program was conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas and the soloist in the Stravinsky Violin Concerto was James Ehnes, one of the greatest violinists of our time.
To accommodate the dancers on the the stage, players of the entire orchestra were seated in the seats of the lower level facing the stage where the audience usually sits.
The program opened with Stravinsky’s Apollo (written in 1927-28 and revised in 1947), with choreography by Balanchine and performed by the Miami City Ballet, an internationally acclaimed ballet company under Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez
The second half of the program opened with Stravinsky’s Circus Polka (1942-44) with Animations by Emily Eckstein (commissioned by the NWS
in 2012). The visual animations in which the ringmaster was repeatedly deterred by a “lazy, hungry elephant” were projected on the hall’s three huge screens.
The concluding work was the Stravinsky Violin Concerto (1931) as
choreographed by Balanchine and performed brilliantly by violinist James Ehnes with the New World Symphony conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas.
Altogether an unforgettable evening !