Alberta Ballet puts a wrap on a year of great change

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From the tragic romance of Giselle into a dark forest of fairytales and folklore, Alberta Ballet has spread its wings this season.

The ambitious 2023-24 calendar included a fantastical interpretation of Hansel & Gretel, the age-old tale of Sleeping Beauty, and Der Wolf’s dark reimagining of Little Red Riding Hood in a double bill with The Rite of Spring, danced to a score by Igor Stravinsky. Christmas also brought the annual family classic The Nutcracker.

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In addition, Alberta Ballet partnered with New York’s Ballet Hispánico to present a portrait of Argentina’s first lady Eva Perón.

The September to May season also marked the debut of new artistic director Francesco Ventriglia, who arrived halfway through in January, and the retirement of seven dancers, including twin sisters Alexandra and Jennifer Gibson, who have been with the company for 27 years.

The upcoming season lineup has not yet been released. Below is a photo recap of the year.

A scene from Dona Peron performed by Ballet Hispanico in September. Photo by Paula Lobo jpg
Alberta Ballet
Alberta Ballet principal dancers Luna Sasaki and Lang Ma in The Sleeping Beauty in October. Courtesy, Nigel Goodwin jpg
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Ana Gallardo Lobaina and cast in Alberta Ballet’s Hansel & Gretel in March. Courtesy, Stephen A’Court. Photo by Stephen A’Court /Photographer Stephen A’Court
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Mya Kresnyak dances during a dress rehearsal of Alberta Ballet’s Der Wolf and The Rite of Spring. It is performed at  Calgary’s Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium from May 2 to 4 and at Edmonton’s Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium from May 10 to 11. Jim Wells/Postmedia Jim Wells/Postmedia
Gibson sisters
Twin sisters Jennifer and Alexandra Gibson in a past Alberta Ballet production of Don Quixote. They will retire following this season. Photo: Leiland Charles / Supplie
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Alberta Ballet’s new artistic director Francesco Ventriglia at the downtown studio, January 23, 2024. Jim Wells/Postmedia Jim Wells/Postmedia

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