Sunday, October 7th
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
Let your imagination soar with Verb Ballets’ new children’s ballet, The Carnival of the Animals, choreographed by Richard Dickinson. The performance is set to Camille Saint-Saëns’ beloved score “where birds and beasts and such, behave a lot like people do, at times a bit too much.” quoting Jack Prelutsky, the nation’s first Children’ Poet Laureate. The whimsical menagerie of animals will come to life for the first time on Sunday, October 7, 2012 from Noon – 2 P.M. at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo in a benefit for Verb Ballets.
The Carnival of the Animals has been acclaimed as the perfect introductory classical piece for young children ages 3-11. During this 30-minute ballet, costumed dancers delight children through movements inspired by the animals they portray. Dickinson has taken the music of Saint-Saens and uses it to tell the story of the Cuckoo Bird who is made fun of by the different animals. They learn to appreciate each other’s differences as the beautiful Swan teaches tolerance and acceptance followed by a grand carnival ending the ballet. The animals include lions, hens and roosters, turtles, elephants, kangaroos, a school of fish, a flock of birds and more!
Admission for the benefit is $30.00 per adult and $13.00 per child, ages 3 to 11. Children 2 and under are free. Senior and group rates are also available. Box lunches are available for $10.00, adults and $7.00 for children. Admission includes the world premiere of The Carnival of the Animals, an opportunity to meet and take photos with the dancers of Verb Ballets, games and the opportunity for the children to wear their favorite animal print or costume for a kid’s parade across the stage!
After the performance, extend your zoo experience with a discounted all-day zoo pass, available in advance for $11.00 for adults and $7.00 for children ages 3-11. Entrance is free for Cleveland Zoological Society members.
Richard Dickinson and Barbara Marcey are serving as co-chairs for the event that benefits Verb Ballets’ Young Scholars Program for Talented Youth. “I welcomed the opportunity to work with Richard when I heard the concept for this ballet. As the new school year opens, bullying will be on parents’ and educators’ minds. This performance will delight young minds as they are introduced to contemporary ballet with insights into acceptance and friendship.” said Marcey, Verb Ballets’ volunteer. “Children and adults relate to animals. This music inspired me to tell a story that is close to my heart, a story that should be shared and discussed by many people young and old alike.” said choreographer and Verb Ballets’ Rehearsal Director, Dickinson. Additional support for the event provided by PFLAG, Cleveland and DJP Entertainment.
Tickets available by calling the Verb Ballets office at 216-397-3757 or online at verbballets.org. The Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Auditorium is located at 3900 Wildlife Way Cleveland, OH 44109. For more information visit verbballets.org.
Choreographer, Richard Dickinson is available for interviews, please email or call 216.397.3757 to arrange. Photo opportunities of rehearsals for The Carnival of the Animals children’s ballet are available by calling the office. Verb Ballets’ repertory and season choreographers photos are available upon request.
About Verb Ballets
Verb Ballets ignites audience passion and participation in contemporary dance. Under the leadership of Director, Dr. Margaret Carlson, Verb strives to support and foster emerging talent, to present excellence in contemporary choreographers, and to revive and honor modern dance classics. The company strives to be a thought leader in cultivating dance appreciation and support through education and outreach programs. In growing audience appreciation for dance Verb Ballets helps make northeast Ohio a national destination for the arts.
Verb Ballets’ season is made possible thanks to the generous support of: AHS Foundation, Akron Community Foundation, Bike Cleveland, Cuyahoga County residents through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, The City of Shaker Heights, The Cleveland Foundation, Findley Davies, Inc., Gay Community Endowment Fund of The Akron Community Foundation, The George Gund Foundation, Kulas Foundation, The Laub Foundation, Lubrizol Foundation, The McGregor Foundation, John P. Murphy Foundation, The Ohio Arts Council, Shah Capital Management, Individual Contributors including Millie L. Carlson, Alan Miles Ruben, Jeri Chaikin, Chuck and Ann Ennis, Frederick Lautzenheiser, Kenneth Milder, David R. Pierce, Robert M. Shwab and Members of the Verb Ballets Board of Trustees.
About Choreographer Richard Dickinson, MFA
(Choreographer, Rehearsal Director)
A former dancer with Ohio Ballet in Akron, OH, Dickinson’s association with that company began in 1988. He later became ballet master and director of company touring. Richard has served as Artistic Associate for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. He currently is an adjunct professor at Youngstown State University; co-director of State Street Ballet’s Summer Intensive (located in Santa Barbara, CA), and Rehearsal Director for Verb Ballets. He was most recently the Artistic Director of Ballet Western Reserve, in Youngstown, OH and the Artistic Director of Great Lakes Festival Ballet (Warren, OH). Dickinson has also directed Boston Ballet II and was a soloist with Boston Ballet for eight years. At age fifteen, he joined the Pasadena Dance Theatre and was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Emerging Choreographer Award for a work premiered by the same company. He performed in the PBS television production of “Frankie and Johnny” with the Chicago Ballet and danced principal roles in Asian, European and American tours with Rudolf Nureyev and the Boston Ballet. In addition to an extensive dance career, including principal and soloist roles with Ohio Ballet, Boston Ballet, Honolulu City Ballet, various regional companies and Chamber Dance Theatre in Milwaukee, where he was Artistic Director. Dickinson has adjudicated four Regional Dance America festivals held throughout the United States. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree in Contemporary Dance from Case Western Reserve University in 2005.