LOURDES LOPEZ / ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

 

 

09.07.11

Miami City Ballet dancers, staff, supporters and friends celebrate the 75th birthday of legendary Founding Artistic Director Edward Villella with cocktails, dinner, dancing and a pre-screening of the company’s upcoming National PBS special.

SATURDAY EVENING, OCTOBER 1, 2011

MIAMI BEACH (Sept. 12, 2011) – Miami City Ballet dancers, staff, friends and supporters will gather on Saturday evening, October 1 to celebrate and honor America's most celebrated male ballet dancer, Company Founding Artistic Director Edward Villella, at a special 75th birthday bash at Miami City Ballet studios in Miami Beach. The evening’s festivities will feature cocktails, dinner, dancing and a pre-screening of the WNET/ PBS National television special, “Great Performances: Miami City Ballet Dances Balanchine & Tharp.” 

The festivities begin promptly at 6:00pm on October 1 with a cocktail reception sponsored by Bacardi U.S.A.
      
Guests will then take to the 225-seat intimate studio theater for a special pre-screening of WNET/PBS program “Great Performances: Miami City Ballet Dances Balanchine & Tharp.”  The program includes a trio of signature works by George Balanchine and Twyla Tharp that will showcase the company’s critically acclaimed performances of Balanchine’s Square Dance and Western Symphony and Tharp’s “The Golden Section.”

Following the screening, guests will enjoy dinner, dancing and tributes from some of Edward Villella’s closest friends and dance peers.  A special montage of the most memorable and outstanding moments in Villella’s illustrious career will be shown.  Tickets are $350, which go to support the artistic efforts of the company, and are available by calling Rebecca Interian at (305) 929-7000, ext. 1408 or email rebecca@miamicityballet.org

Edward Villella is regarded as the greatest American-born male ballet dancer of our time. He proved that a tough, brash kid out of Maritime College could become a major artist, and in doing so, changed the way men danced in America as well as the way male dancers were perceived.  Born in Bayside, New York, in 1936, Villella entered the School of American Ballet at age ten, but interrupted his dance training to complete academic studies at the New York Maritime Academy, where he obtained a B.S. in marine transportation, lettered in baseball and was a championship boxer.  In 1957 he was invited to join the New York City Ballet, where he was quickly promoted to Soloist (1958), and then to Principal Dancer (1960).   Villella was the original male lead in many important ballets in the New York City Ballet repertoire.  Perhaps his most famous role was in the 1960 revival of Balanchine’s 1929 masterpiece, Prodigal Son.  He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the School of American Ballet. His biggest accomplishment is co-founding Miami City Ballet with philanthropist Toby Lerner Ansin in 1985. Villella has taken the renowned company to dizzying heights, winning critical acclaim in South Florida, New York and around the world. This July, the company made its Paris debut performing for three-weeks to sold-out houses and standing ovations at the world-famous Théâter du Châtelet.

“Great Performances: Miami City Ballet Dances Balanchine &Tharp” will air nationwide Friday, October 28. Great Performances is a production of THIRTEEN in association with WNET, one of America’s most prolific and respected public media providers.  PBS Arts from Miami: Great Performances “Miami City Ballet Dances Balanchine & Tharp” airs locally on Friday, October 28 at 9pm on WPBT2.

Corporate sponsorship for Edward Villella’s birthday celebration is generously provided by Bacardi U.S.A., Brooks Brothers and Aventura Worldwide Transportation Service and Jenny’s Flowers, Inc.  Print sponsorship courtesy of Selecta Magazine.  Event sponsorships are still available.  Contact Kris Kramer at (305) 929-7000, ext. 1424.

Miami City Ballet’s 2011-12 season runs from October to April at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Miami, Broward Center in Fort Lauderdale and Kravis Center in West Palm Beach. Highlights include a World Premiere ballet by Liam Scarlett, Britain’s hottest, young choreographer, the return of the full-length productions of Giselle and Coppélia and George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™ this December in Miami and Fort Lauderdale.  The Opus One Orchestra will perform live for all repertory programs. Subscribe now for best seating and prices at www.miamicityballet.org or call (305) 929-7010 or toll-free (877) 929-7010.

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About Miami City Ballet:
Critically acclaimed by The New York Times, Miami City Ballet (MCB) was founded in 1985 by Artistic Director Edward Villella. The company engages over 40 dancers and features a repertoire of more than 90 ballets which they perform in the four home counties of Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach and Collier, and around the world. MCB maintains its headquarters in Miami Beach in a facility designed by renowned architectural firm Arquitectonica. The facility houses rehearsal studios and administrative offices as well as the Company’s school: Miami City Ballet School. Visit us at www.miamicityballet.org . You can also “like” us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.


SPONSORED IN PART BY THE STATE OF FLORIDA, DEPARTMENT OF STATE, DIVISION OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS, AND THE FLORIDA COUNCIL ON ARTS AND CULTURE.  MCB PROGRAMMING IS MADE POSSIBLE WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS AND THE CULTURAL AFFAIRS COUNCIL, THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY MAYOR AND BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS.  CITY OF MIAMI BEACH, CULTURAL AFFAIRS PROGRAM, CULTURAL ARTS COUNCIL.  A COPY OF THE OFFICIAL REGISTRATION AND FINANCIAL INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM THE DIVISION OF CONSUMER SERVICES BY CALLING TOLL-FREE (800) 435-7352 WITHIN THE STATE.  REGISTRATION DOES NOT IMPLY ENDORSEMENT, APPROVAL OR RECOMMENDATION BY THE STATE.  MCB REGISTRATION NUMBER: CH1034.

 

PRESS INQUIRIES

For press information and interviews with
Miami City Ballet, contact Amber Dorsky,
PR Manager, at 305.929.7000 x1602
or e-mail: amber@miamicityballet.org