THEATER | DANCE | CLASSICAL MUSIC | OPERA | COMEDY

NORTH TEXAS PERFORMING ARTS NEWS

REVIEWS

<em>Le Ballet de Dracula&nbsp;</em>at LakeCities Ballet Theatre

Review: Le Ballet de Dracula | LakeCities Ballet Theatre | MCL Grand Theater


It's Got Bite

LakeCities Ballet Theatre thrills yet again with its annual production of Le Ballet de Dracula at the MCL Grand Theater in Lewisville.



published Friday, October 17, 2014

Photo: Nancy Loch
Le Ballet de Dracula at LakeCities Ballet Theatre

LewisvilleLakeCities Ballet Theatre kicks off the Halloween season with their ninth annual Le Ballet de Dracula, frightfully presented at the MCL Grand Theater in Lewisville. The yearly favorite features choreography by artistic director Kelly Kilburn Lannin, assisted by Shanon Tate. The company brings its own twist to the tale with a background story by Tom Rutherford. Saturday evening showcased the children’s costume parade, which provided a spirited and spooky atmosphere.

After a comedic opening announcement in which a thick Eastern European accent warned us against violating the rules of the theater, the mood grew dark as lightening flashed on scrim and ominous music drifted through the speakers. It’s enough to make even the most seasoned LBT viewer feel the hairs stand up on the back of the neck.

Asia Waters splendidly reprises her role as the scampering Ratcliff, who attempts to ward off the fearsome weolas, a bat-like creature that comes out of Dracula’s castle. Unsuccessful, this poor soul becomes a servant of the Dark Prince.

The scene brightens with a new day and an engagement party for Aurelia (Ali Honchell) and Marius (Blaine Quine). Various folk dances, including the Maypole, provide sprightly entertainment. Trouble comes when Dracula himself (Shannon Beacham) descends on the festivities and becomes enamored with Aurelius. She dances with him under a spell, which drives a wedge between her and Marius. Dracula returns later to pick up Aurelia as his new bride.

Act II takes us to Dracula’s lair where his queen Marcela (Mackenna Pieper) and the rest of his brides await his return. Dressed in delicate but tattered white dresses, the brides execute a frightening ensemble segment. Their master returns with Aurelia, but Marius soon follows and kills Dracula. Supposedly.

The visual aspects of the production are always remarkable. Colorful costumes and a meticulously decorated village scene illuminate the first act, while the wispy grays and whites of Dracula’s lair maintain its sinister ambiance.

Music choices from a variety of 19th and 20th century composers fit well with the theme and choreography, but the transitions between the songs feel too abrupt. This is where live music (a usual staple for LBT’s Nutcracker) can really make a difference.

Choreographically, Lannin provides a challenge for her young dancers with Dracula, one that tests not only technical excellence but depth and maturity of performance. Even though the same production repeats each year, it’s exciting to see how the company members progress and grow. Can the corps de ballet exude the animated quality needed for the folk dances and gaiety of the first act then transform into the horrors of the second? Does Marcela embody the right amount of bite? Will the female lead fully travel the range of emotions with Aurelia? 

The former group seems to have the opposite issue from that of last year. The current ensemble fares remarkably well as the brides, with ghastly presences and smoldering stares. Even the hisses have the right amount of intensity, and their movements contain the mysterious and suspenseful timing dynamic needed to pull off the character. In the first act, however, the dancers as the townspeople lack the liveliness of last year, with the exception of the “Villagers” dance.

Honchell proves to be a fairly good actress and has an admirable sensitivity to music, and Quine is a dashing and passionate Marius. Pieper presents an eerie Marcela with lovely lines, but her performance could use more depth. Beacham, as usual, delivers a formidable Dracula.

One element that hasn’t changed is the technical execution. LakeCities consistently gives polished and precise performances, which is probably why they sell out almost every show, even as Le Ballet de Dracula reaches the decade mark. Thanks For Reading





Dates, Prices, & Other Details

View the Article Slideshow

Comment on this Article

Share this article on Social Media
Click or Swipe to close
It's Got Bite
LakeCities Ballet Theatre thrills yet again with its annual production of Le Ballet de Dracula at the MCL Grand Theater in Lewisville.
by Cheryl Callon

Share this article on Facebook
Tweet this article
Share this article on Google+
Share this article via email
Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center Firehouse Theatre Silent Sky Mistletoe Magic TCC Daylight Cara Mia Chamberlain Hip Hop Nutcracker Gloria La Fete Scrooge Irving Arts Center Dallas Opera Bocelli American Airlines center
Click or Swipe to close
reviews
views on theater, dance, classical music, opera and comedy performances
news & notes
reports from the local performing arts scene
features & interviews
who and what are moving and shaking in the performing arts scene
season announcements
keep up with the arts groups' upcoming seasons
audiocasts
listen to interviews with people in the local performing arts scene
media reviews
reviews and stories on performing arts-related film, TV, recordings and books
arts organizations
learn more about the local producing and presenting arts groups
performance venues
learn more about the theaters and spaces where the arts happen
contests
keep up with fabulous ticket giveaways and other promotions
crowdfunding
connect to local arts crowdfunding campaigns
studio
post or view auditions and performing arts-related classes, services, jobs and more
about us
info on TheaterJones, our staff, what we do and how to contact us
Click or Swipe to close
First Name:
Last Name:
Date of Birth:
ZIP Code:
Your Email Address:
Click or Swipe to close
Join TheaterJones Around the Web



Follow Us on Twitter

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel

Click or Swipe to close
Search the TheaterJones Archives
Use any or all of the options below to search through all of reviews, interviews, features and special sections. If you are looking for a an event, use the calendar section of this website. This search will not search through the calendar.
Article Title Search:


Description Search:
TheaterJones Contributor:


TheaterJones Section:


Category:
Showing on or after:      Showing on or before:  
Search
Click or Swipe to close
We welcome your comments

I am discussing:  



Your Name:
Your Email Adress:


please enter the text below and then click or tap SUBMIT :
Submit