Northwest NEWS

October 5, 1998



PNB's 'Carmina Burana' makes for an exciting season opener

   by Deborah Stone
   Pacific Northwest Ballet opens its 1998-99 season with the blockbuster production of "Carmina Burana."
   Choreographed by PNB Artistic Director Kent Stowell, "Carmina Burana" is set to the dramatic score by Carl Orff, which was inspired by a collection of medieval songs and poems discovered in 1803 at a Bavarian monastery.
   Seventy-two members of the Seattle Choral Company and three vocal soloists, in a suspended loft directly above the stage, chant the verses of Orff's now famous score while PNB dancers perform the compelling and sensual movements that have made this ballet so popular.
   Above the dancers there is a grand-scale, twenty-six foot, rotating golden wheel, designed by the acclaimed Ming Cho Lee, symbolizing fortune and fate.
   "Carmina Burana" is one dramatic and exciting spectacle that excites audiences and evokes emotions.
   Dancers portray happy peasants, seductresses, gypsies and romantic lovers with joy, playfulness and much spirit.
   The dancing is lovely, particularly the dynamic couplings of Patricia Barker with Olivier Wevers and Julie Tobiason with Vladslav Bourakov.
   It is obvious why this ballet is a favorite with Seattle audiences and once again it received a standing ovation on opening night.
   Rounding out the evening's program is Balanchine's ageless and tireless "Serenade," set to Tchaikovsky's lightness on stage as they flawlessly execute Balanchine's technical movements.
   For up-coming program information and tickets call 206-292-ARTS.