Pretty pastel costumes, new ribbons on the shoes, tiaras that sparkle like a new penny. These are signs of spring recitals where young dancers awaken to the beauty of ballet.
And no one offers a finer dance program than Svetlana Kravtsova and Vadim Pijicov, the founding directors. De L’Etoile, The Classical Ballet Theater of Maryland. Their Howard County-based company, along with students and guest artists, will perform “A Tribute to Classical Ballet” this Saturday night at the Jim Rouse Theater.
During a recent program for guests and families, we watched Kravtsofa rehearse the rarely performed “Ramona,” a work that showcases L’Etoile’s well-trained dancers. It highlights the bravery of guest artist, Jie-Siou Wu, who was recently invited to dance with the Washington Ballet.
Set to a magnificent score by Alexander Glazunov, “Ramonda” was originally premiered by Marius Petipa in 1898. Kravtsova revived the work with her authentic training and teaching of the Vaganova technique. Here’s a chance to see real Russian ballet, performed by Russian-trained dancers. Think dashing cavaliers and princesses and lots of flying leaps across the stage. Flying High will be guest artist Jie Siou Wu who reminds this writer of a young Rudy Nureyev.
For me, it was a treat to see Kratsova’s teenage ballerinas ready to take the stage with grace and aplomb. Congratulations to Natalie DuCharme, Mabelle Liu, Lily Shen, Gabrielle Fish, Emma Pan, Charlotte Tettlin, Sasha Cheloff and Jeslyn Li, among others.