Published March 17. 2011 4:00AM
Calling all fans of "Snow White," the fairy tale, and of classical ballet. For the next three Saturdays afternoons, Connecticut's world-class ballet company, Mystic Ballet, is putting on "Snow White" at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum Auditorium.
Each year the Mystic Ballet, the only remaining full-season, full-repertoire ballet company in the state, stages a special Dance Me a Story performance of classic fairy tales, designed for youth and the young at heart.
Mystic Ballet, founded in 1997 by Goran and Desiree Subotic, a former professional dancer, master teacher, and choreographer, has evolved into a professional contemporary ballet company, one that attracts 1,500 auditioning artists for the 12 to 15 fulltime positions, and a school that offers courses from pre-ballet through pre-professional to artist in residency. Desiree serves as the ballet school's principal.
Even if you've seen "Snow White" on stage before, you'll be seeing something new this time, according to Goran Subotic.
"People who love classical ballet, the lifts and movements, will absolutely love it," he said. "It's a beautiful collage of very strong classical dance, plus the more contemporary American Broadway style that appeals to broader audiences."
And then there are the comical antics of the seven dwarfs, special effects and orchestration designed to engage audience members, especially younger ones.
Not only are the ballet company's performers in residence some of the best artists in the world, coming from Australia, Japan, Bolivia, Spain, Italy and the United States, Subotic said. The choreographers and artistic staff are equally talented and looking to put their signature on the production.
"The people who are working on this production have studied at the master's degree level at the famed Kirov Ballet of St. Petersburg, Russia, one of the best ballet companies in the world," he said.
While most American ballet companies can afford to run only a 17- to 24-week season, with a heavy emphasis on the Nutcracker or similar holiday performances, Subotic said Mystic Ballet has worked to maintain a 42- to 44-week season that is shaped around seven distinct productions that aim to make dance artistry and performance accessible to the widest possible public. This includes fall and spring repertoire productions, involving resident choreographers who come to work with the dancers for two weeks to two months, the obligatory holiday Nutcracker, a couple of serious adult productions and this annual children's series, all involving the professional dancers in residence.
While the company's dancers are performing on tour in New York and Europe, a June Art in Motion series involves the ballet school's students, followed by a summer stage production that runs through August.
Performances of Mystic Ballet's Snow White are Saturday, March 19, 26 and April 2, all starting at 2 p.m. The Mashantucket Pequot Museum auditorium is at 110 Pequot Trail. There will also be a pre show talk with choreographers and an after show question and answer period with the dancers.
Tickets range from $15 to $40 and can be purchased anytime online at mysticballet.org or by calling the Mystic Ballet box office, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Saturday at (860) 536-3671. Advance purchase is recommended.