Regional audiences will be treated to a collaborative effort between the Oregon East Symphony and the Pendleton Ballet Theatre as they present Igor Stravinsky’s theatrical ballet work “A Soldier’s Tale” (L’histoire du soldat).
“A Soldier’s Tale” is the Faustian story of a soldier exchanging his fiddle to the devil for the Book of Knowledge. It was composed by Stranvinksy in 1917 in Switzerland while World War I was raging across Europe. During the period, he experimented with scaled-down productions due to the lack of available musicians and dancers who were preoccupied with the war.
The production is Saturday, March 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the Bob Clapp Theater at Blue Mountain Community College, 2411 N.W. Carden Ave., Pendleton. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students and seniors or $45 for a family of four.
In addition to a chamber ensemble of seven musicians, “A Soldier’s Tale” features dramatic and choreographed elements. Actors include Oregon East Symphony board members and seasoned thespians Gary Ferguson as The Narrator, Bill Mayclin as The Devil and Murray Dunlap as The Soldier. All three have previously appeared in College Community Theatre productions and are all members of the Pendleton Men’s Chorus. Acting direction has been provided by Chris Ferguson.
Choreography for the production is directed by Julie Sneden-Carlson, owner of the Pendleton Ballet Theatre. Sneden-Carlson has danced professionally with San Diego Ballet, City Center Ballet and San Francisco Ballet. She founded the Pendleton Ballet Theatre as a studio and performance group dedicated to classical and contemporary ballet. She turned her focus to teaching after a dancing injury. She has been teaching ballet in Pendleton since 2007.
“I love teaching ballet,” Sneden-Carlson said. “It is so much more than just teaching dance steps. It is so much more than teaching strength, grace and beauty. I have the opportunity to help kids learn about life through their desire to dance.”
Dancers include Madison Cates as The Princess and Austin Ford as The Devil. Cates has danced the leading roles in past Pendleton Ballet Theatre productions of “The Nutcracker” and “Cinderella” and is an accomplished makeup artist. Ford is in his fourth year of studying dance and has performed the role of The Prince in Pendleton Ballet Theatre’s production of “The Nutcracker.”
The performance also will include the bassoon feature “Dead Elvis” by Michael Daugherty. The contemporary work re-examines the legacy of the King of Rock and Roll.
“Dead Elvis” features Oregon East Symphony principal bassoonist Kirsten Boldt-Neurohr as The King, who is simultaneously alive and dead. Boldt-Neurohr is an advisor and music instructor at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington.
Advance tickets for the production are sold out, but there will be tickets available at the door. For more information, contact the symphony office at 541-276-0320 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact Community Editor Tammy Malgesini at email@example.com or 541-564-4539