Original ballet premieres at the Forest Roberts Theatre

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MARQUETTE — The Forest Roberts Theatre will play host to a theatrical event never seen on it’s stage before. An original, world premiere ballet complete with a full chamber orchestra based on the old norweigen folk talk “East of the Sun, West of the Moon”.

The ballet was the brain child of Jill Grundstrom and Griffin Candey. They have been working to compose and get the ballet ready for staging for about five years.

“Griffin was like ‘I think that we can really do this and I think we can do some interesting music’,” says Grundstrom, Director and Choreographer, “it, of course, plays in nicely to our area, which was kind of the theme, it had something to do with marquette and the upper peninsula and heritage. So, being scandinavian seemed to be a great fit.”

This year Grundstrom, the Dance Program Director at NMU, proposed originating the ballet on the stage during the Forest Roberts Theatre season and the other faculty were on board. Bringing a full orchestra ballet to the Marquette stage has provided opportunities for the cast and orchestra that they have never had before.

Sadie Knill, who plays the lead role of “the girl” in “East of the Sun, West of the Moon” says, “I’ve never had the opportunity to do anything like this, which is really fun. It’s so cool to be able to have live music and a pit, which I’ve also never done and it’s just very special to be a part of.”

The show runs January 24th-26th at the Forest Roberts Theatre. This includes a sensory friendly performance on the 26th at 1pm. Sensory friendly performances is part of the “Theatre for All” initiative that makes theatre more accessible for children and adults on the autism spectrum. For more information on “Theatre for All” at the FRT click here.

The show is appropriate for all ages and there is something for everyone.

Griffin Candey, Composer, explains, “There’s actually a really good mix of sort of humor, the troll bits are specifically quite humorous. So it’s not this dark, you know, super angry ballet. There’s certainly moments of grief and things but it’s sort of contrasted by some lighter material.”

Tickets are available online, at any NMU ticket outlet, or at the door. The cost is $15 for general public, $10 for students, and $5 for NMU students.

For a full list of dates and times and a synopsis of the show, click here.

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