in partnership withLocal 12 News
BalletMet Columbus Dancers performing "Age of Innocence" (part of Cincinnati Ballet's production of "Wild Sweet Love") / Image: Peter Mueller

The Ballet's "Wild Sweet Love" Could Be The Best Part Of Your Weekend

You know the feeling when you walk out of a great movie? ...

The story was beautifully told.
The acting was on point.
And the soundtrack just killed it.

You walk to your car high on life. The thoughts running through your head go something like...

a) That was freakin' awesome.
b) Would it be weird if I came back to see it again tomorrow?
c) I'm totally gonna download the soundtrack as soon as I get home.

That feeling of time & money well spent -- entertainment that offers a true mental escape (or even artistic elevation, depending on what movie we're all talking about here) -- doesn't come by often. But when it does, it's something that becomes a very real part of your life, woven into your friend-group's lexicon (and your own Internet search history).

That feeling is something you can have this weekend.

It's out there for the taking, my friends. Cincinnati Ballet, in collaboration with BalletMet Columbus, is mounting a contemporary triple-bill production titled Wild Sweet Love.


First piece: Who Cares?
Choreographer: George Balanchine
Music: 16 of George Gershwin's most classic tunes (e.g. "I Got Rhythm")

What is it like?: Ballet meets Broadway. Patric Palkens has some magical Gene Kelly swagger as he performs a pas de deux with three separate leading ladies (Courtney Connor Jones, Abigail Morwood, and Serena Sovdsnes). In case you didn't notice the choreographer section above, let us repeat: It's George Balanchine. Need we say more?

Second piece: The Age of Innocence
Choreographer: Edwaard Liang
Music: Thomas Newman and Philip Glass

What is it like?: The name, for you non-bookworms out there, pays homage to an Edith Wharton novel. And we're told the piece is inspired by Jane Austin. But honestly, I felt like it was "Gladiator has an affair with Troy. And it's offspring is Pride and Prejudice." The dancing is fiery, raw, passionate, intense... In a word, it's HOT.

*Note: This ballet is solely performed by BalletMET dancers.

Third piece: Wild Sweet Love
Choreographer: Trey McIntyre
Music: Too many to name, but there are some definite goodies like Queen, Roberta Flack, and The Patridge Family

What is it like?: Awesome. Just pure awesome. I mean, when the evening closes with "Somebody To Love" by Queen, how could it NOT be awesome? We'd like to give a particularly special shout out to Sarah Hairston. She stars in the leading role. And she slays it.

Note: Hairston will be retiring at the end of this season. (Tear.)

We also loved Cervilio Amador and Rodrigo Amarales as they partnered with Christina LaForgia to a playful Mexican tune by Jose Alfredo Jimenez. Lastly, big ups to the production team for the lighting effects that worked as transitions in this performance. The silhouettes of the dancers in the background of the stage were a wonderful touch.

And just so you can enjoy that same ooey-gooey, gushy feeling that I referenced at the beginning of this review...

I'll let Queen handle the "adieu" duties.

- - -

Catch "Wild Sweet Love," a triple-bill performance by Cincinnati Ballet in collaboration with BalletMet Columbus, this weekend (March 18 & 19) at the Aronoff Center.