I was recently invited to a preview of Ballet Manila’s 20th anniversary concert. Alllowing me the opportunity to have a sneak peak on the upcoming event as well as talks with the dancers, coreographers and Philippine’s own prima ballerina Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elizalde.
Dedicated. Passionate. Disciplined. Creative.
These are the words that came to my mind after speaking with the dancers, choreographers,and Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elzialde. BM 2.0 will celebrate the 20th anniversary of prima ballerina Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elzialde’s pride and joy, Ballet Manila. The concert will showcase the 20 years of the burning passion of ballet dancers all across the Philippines.
Built from the ground up, the company started with just 12 dancers back in 1995 and with limited resources of studio space. The company has greatly evolved to now 50 professional dancers, three rehersal studios along with a music library and Ballet Manila’s own facilities.
While speakig to the dancers, my first question: how do you stay so fit? The answer: 6 days a week of rigirous rehersals, 5 minute breaks and quick meals. Which eventually burn off again through rehersals. These dancers were the most dedicated people I have ever talked to. Many of them started as early as 4 years old and coming from families of dancers. These young dynamic performers take ballet as a lifestyle. Even after physical and mental exhaustion, their passion reaps through and fuels them to express their creativity through the form of dance.
Multi-awarded coreographer Annabelle Lope Ochoa, from Belgium, was a guest coreographer for the 20th anniversary. Her number, “Bloom”, was one of my favorite previews. It will make it’s premiere at the concert this Feburary 28. She was such a lovely person to talk to. I got to know her story as a ballerina herself, to now a coreographer. Annabelle is one of many international coreographers Ballet Manila now invites for performances. Making Ballet Manila, international!
Here I am rambling on about the company, when most of you are a little indifferent to the idea of ballet. The new generation still has a lot to understand when it comes to one of the most traditional art forms of dance. Our generation is blinded by the latest trends, reality television, and celebrity gossip. The 20th anniversary marks the time to reach out to the new generations and get them to appreciate the dynamic form of classical ballet. One of the number’s titled “Tara Let’s” actually combines the latest OPM music to classical coreography. It’s a great way for the next generation to understand and have an interest in ballet. A tie-up with Star City, those who purchase a ticket allows them to view performances free of charge. Children and parents can walk through to Aliw Theatre and experience the gliterring costumes, graceful movements, and fascinating dances.
I invite you to see the spectacular yourself. Even if you have never seen a ballet, or even been a fan of. This concert will let you experience a feeling of passion, art and pride.
Date of Performances:
Febuary 28 at 7.30pm (Gala night)
March 1 at 3pm
Aliw Theatre, CCP Complex, Pasay City
For more details contact Ticket World at 891.9999 or visit their website at ticketworld.com.ph
Keep it posted for part 2 with my one-on-one with prima ballerina Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elizalde.