Heralded by The New York Times as being just as important "to the 20th century as Beethoven's Ninth is to the 19th," Stravinsky's unique depiction of music and dance was not always met with such enthusiasm. In conservative 1913 Paris, audiences were shocked by The Rite of Spring's fiercely rhythmic score and sharp, jagged dance moves. This was far from classical ballet. Fights in the audience were not uncommon as supporters of the new style clashed with detractors. Other audience members took to whistling and catcalling the ballerinas, amused by their aggressive depiction of fertility rites. Those saucy turn-of-the-century Europeans! Almost a century later, The Rite of Spring has triumphed as a true musical masterpiece. What was once contemporary is now a timeless classic for all ages to enjoy, but please don't holla at the dancers.
May 29-31, 8 p.m., 2008
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