Contemporary ballet

American Contemporary Ballet company comes to the top – Daily News

Forget an elaborate scene and get ready to watch up close dancers in action as the American Contemporary Ballet performs a new show on the top floor of a downtown Los Angeles skyscraper with majestic views of the city in the background.

The Los Angeles-based company, which is known for performing in unusual intimate venues with live music, first a new ballet in a room surrounded by large windows on the 32nd floor of The Bloc building in downtown Los Angeles on August 11.

“I think it will certainly make the experience unique and I think it will also make it more relevant to the audience, more current in our time,” said Theresa Farrell, dancer and co-founder of the five-year-old company. , referring to the high-rise location of the new ballet “Adamiana,” which runs until August 14.

“That view is inspiring and it’s not like the stage is so far away it’s (the ballet) that precious distant thing. It’s beautiful and it’s real and it’s right there,” she said.

The company was founded in 2011 and has performed in unconventional venues like warehouses, commercial buildings and the historic Farmers and Merchants Bank building.

The next hour-long ballet will be performed with a group of seven musicians in front of the large windows of a top-floor space that can accommodate around 100 people.

The intimacy of space and location aims to create a more visceral experience for the audience as they sit close to the dancers.

“Being so close, people can experience athleticism and beauty in a new way because when you’re so close, the (dancers) are real,” Farrell said, noting that in major ballet performances, it is often difficult. to even see the dancer’s facial expressions.

“Here you hear them breathing, you can hear the shoe hitting the ground and I think it engages in a whole different way. It’s a unique experience,” she said.

The piece itself will also be a unique experience as it is carried by the rarely heard music of the 19th century by Adolphe Adam. The French-born composer is best known for his 1841 ballet Giselle.

But it wasn’t the only one he wrote as he continued to write ballet music that equaled or even exceeded his best-known piece, said Lincoln Jones, artistic director and co-founder of ACB. .

“He wrote a lot of music for ballets that you don’t see anymore,” Jones said.

He described the music in “Adamiana” as dramatic, lyrical, melodic and catchy while the dancing ranges from folk to dreamy and classical to dramatic.

“Most of this music hasn’t been heard in 150 years,” he said.