Ballet Kelowna rehearses Schubert from internationally renowned choreographer, John Alleyne photo:Sydney Morton

Ballet Kelowna opens 16th season with Autumn

Two Canadian choreographers work will be premiered Nov. 16 and 17

Ballet Kelowna, triumphantly returning from Toronto and Beijing debuts, launches their 16th season with Autumn, a performance that features two Canadian choreographers.

Schubert, from internationally renowned choreographer, John Alleyne and In Between by Alysa Pires offer a dynamic program and audience favourite. Pires’s MAMBO will return to the stage once again after its standing ovation in 2018.

Alleyne’s Schubert was first mounted by Ballet B.C. in 2000 as a tribute to Canadian ballerina, Jean Orr. It displays the ethereal transience of the autumnal season, celebrating the life of a dancer in three scenes: youth, beauty, and wisdom.

“Schubert is very reflective of the cycle of life. It celebrates the journey and life of a dancer. A dancer’s career is very short and often times coming to the end of their career at the age of 35,” said Simone Orlando, Ballet Kelowna’s Artistic Director and CEO. “The sense is that it is temporal. When we look at the seasons, especially Autumn, life in a way is coming to an end (is) reflective in this particular season.”

RELATED: Ballet Kelowna to kick off 16th season with pair of premiers

The classically trained dancers will be performing the contemporary piece while still on point.

“The edge comes in the transition of movement, so it’s not just about putting yourself in the position, it’s about the journey between positions and that is what almost defines contemporary ballet,” said Orlando.

“There is a greater use of spine in contemporary and the partnering in this piece is very unconventional and exciting. The men have to really work to put the women in these off-balance positions… It’s not upright, classical, Nutcracker tu-tu and I think there is a really interesting physicality in this work that audiences will find fascinating.”

RELATED: Kinky Boots musical coming to Kelowna

Then transporting the audience to the seaside, In Between brings energy and is a reflection of Pires’s own life; a native Vancouver Islander that was transplanted to Toronto. It’s a meditation on a life divided between two places. A past linked to body and soul, and a future that lights the way forward.

MAMBO will then lighten the mood with its sweet and silly sensuality that will feature Ballet Kelowna’s nine artists, offering a gleeful retreat from the burdens of daily life set to a soundtrack of Latin, swing, and jazz standards.

“We wanted to finish off the program with something that is a retreat from the burdens of daily life and sending people home feeling really good about what they just saw,” said Orlando.

Ballet Kelowna’s Autumn will run from Nov.16 to 17 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are available at

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