Mesa-based Arizona Youth Ballet Company will stage “Snow White,” a new ballet choreographed by Artistic Director Christina Hampton, April 21 and 22 at Mesa Community College’s Performing Arts Center. The rarely performed ballet spins the beloved tale of Snow White and her quest to outwit the Evil Queen with the help of the seven dwarves. Tickets are available at azyb.org.
Having danced in Snow White as a teenager, Hampton said, “It made so much of an impact on me that I knew I needed to stage the ballet with Arizona Youth Ballet.” She enjoys how the ballet incorporates children in a majority of roles and appeals to audiences of all ages and spent two years finding the right mix of music from composers Edvard Grieg, Felix Mendelssohn and Jean Sibelius.
Unlike other familiar ballets, no specific choreography exists for “Snow White,” but Hampton embraced the challenge of staging the ballet.
“I couldn’t wait to get in and choreograph for the Evil Queen and her evil plotting to get Snow White,” she said.
With Assistant Artistic Director Cheryl Ayers’ help, Hampton worked to capture the magic of the fairy tale ballet by encouraging the dancers to delve into their roles. She hopes this ballet will influence the dancers to embrace acting and ballet like it did for her as a teenager.
On the same bill as “Snow White” are “Paquita” and a piece entitled “Deviation.” Featuring new music composed by D.L. Harrison, “Deviation” is a contemporary number choreographed by Donna Petersen. Paquita showcases the structure of different ballet roles within the company in a Spanish style of dance. Although there is no set story, the multilayered ballet highlights the roles of the dancers through individual variations and the group dynamics of the ballet.