Founded by Minnesota native and choreographer-extraordinaire James Sewell, the James Sewell Ballet has been a mainstay in Minnesota ballet for the past 20 years. Willing to push boundaries and create innovative works, the company has also enjoyed successful collaborations with other staples in the cultural scene including the Minnesota Orchestra, the Guthrie Theater and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Check these dancers out in their native habitat at the Cowles Center for Dance and Performing Arts in downtown Minneapolis, or catch them while out on tour. In addition to performing in Minneapolis, the company hits a few outlying towns and spots all over the country during its touring season. This is a great pick for ballet that’s grounded in a modern sensibility.
Also a Minnesota home-grown production, the Metropolitan Ballet is a dual-purpose organization that is part ballet academy and part professional performing company. Founded by Erik Sanborn in 2002, the Metropolitan Ballet is a unique company. The organization focuses on creating performance art that combines the best of dance, music and theater. In the past 10 years, the reviews have spoken for themselves. Snag tickets to one of the semi-annual productions, or enjoy where form meets function and see “The Nutcracker,” featuring students from the academy.
Located at the Ballet Royale Minnesota’s fantastic facilities in the South Metro, the TCB is a semi-professional company that brings its art into the neighborhoods. With its engaging Outreach “Mobile Shows,” TCB works with elementary-school kids to share in the love and understanding of ballet. In addition to this active program, the company also stages a few productions each year. Another fun event is the group’s annual summer dance festival that allows dance enthusiasts to work with other local groups. For a ballet option outside of the downtown area, the TCB offers an affordable and excellent option.
An integral piece of the University of Minnesota, the Northrop is also a leading light in the Minneapolis ballet scene. Currently under renovation, but taking full advantage of its partner spaces (including the Orpheum Theater), the Northrop is known for attracting big names to the Twin Cities. This spring, it was the “Ballet Preljocaj” and the contemporary production of “Snow White.” Look for the 2012-2013 dance schedule to be released soon, and plan your visit. Northrop Dance also offers season ticket packages to give viewers a great discount and the opportunity to see more than one of its great offerings in a season.
Hennepin Theatre Trust
State Theatre Box Office (Tickets for the Orpheum, State and Pantages Theatres)
805 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55402
See a schedule of events here.
The Orpheum Theatre (part of the Hennepin Theatre Trust) is an integral cog in the Minneapolis arts scene, but it is also a pretty important player in the holiday season. Every year, the Moscow Ballet comes to Minneapolis to perform “The Nutcracker.” It’s a timeless and traditional point of reference in ballet, with good reason. With the score, choreography and pageantry, this ballet has it all, and in the hands of the Moscow Ballet, the audience is in for a riveting performance. A perfect prelude to the holidays, this show is very popular and sells out quickly, so get your tickets early.