Miami City Ballet's Last Call for Open Barre Before European Tour

A toast to the next steps! Miami City Ballet (MCB) offers its hometown public another weekend to celebrate its 25th anniversary before honeymooning in Paris. This Friday and Saturday at MCB's Wolfson studio theater in South Beach, the company performs excerpts from George Balanchine's The Four Temperaments and Twyla Tharp's In the Upper Room.

Raise a cocktail glass in the lobby ("open bar" sponsored by Bacardi USA) and preview the repertory the company will bring overseas. Read on to see what you're in store for.

Théâtre du Châtelet invites MCB for an unusually long run, July 6 to 23,

during which the company will present an impressive 14 ballets in 17

performances. "Never having danced in a single city for three weeks,"

remarks Edward Villella, MCB's artistic director, "it gives us the

opportunity for Paris to have a complete insight into who we are." Along

with eight ballets by Balanchine, works by Jerome Robbins, Paul Taylor,

Christopher Wheeldon and Tharp comprise the tour -- " a wonderful

overview of the company's style and of the challenges that we have

undertaken," Villella says.

Participation in the seventh annual Étés De La Danse festival marks

MCB's Paris debut as well as their first foreign tour since 9/11.

Following a sensational critical triumph in 2009 in New York City, MCB

is poised for success in another of the world's dance capitals. (The

illustrious Théâtre du Châtelet has hosted other important

introductions: Serge Diaghilev's Ballets Russes premiered there in


The tour provides a meaningful homecoming for husband-and-wife MCB

dancers Yann Trividic and Suzanne Limbrunner. French-born Trividic will

perform several favorite roles on the tour (catch him in the Phlegmatic

temperament at Open Barre).  His twin brother, Alain Trividic, who

dances with the Ballet du Rhin in Strasbourg, will be watching in the

audience alongside other family members. With only a couple of days off,

Trividic hopes he'll be able to take a group wine tasting in

Saint-Émilion.  ("It's like a Medieval village," he says, complete with

vineyards and castle.) Limbrunner, born in Oregon, danced with the

Ballet de l'Opéra National de Bordeaux. Asked what attractions she would

recommend to colleagues, she names the Palais Garnier and Musée


The pair is excited to perform in France "with the company we love the

most," notes Limbrunner.  Trividic, who returned to MCB in 2010 after a

seven-year absence, felt freshly inspired by the MCB dancers and moved

by "how musical they are and the energy, the speed with which they

dance. What you feel is people excited to dance." After the company's

more than decade-long absence from Europe, does Villella have any

thoughts on how his company has changed? "Oh, sure. We're much better

than we used to be!  That's the point -- to get better each year."

Miami City Ballet's Open Barre takes place Friday 7 p.m., and Saturday

at 2:30 and 7 p.m. in the Lynn and Louis Wolfson II Theatre, 2200

Liberty Ave., Miami Beach. Tickets cost $35. Call 877-929-7010 or visit


--Emily Hite, artburstmiami.com

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