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Black Tie International:
On The Town With Aubrey Reuben October 27, 2018

 

 

Aubrey Reuben

On the Town With Aubrey Reuben
Where All the Stars Shine Brightly!

October 27, 2018

American Ballet Theatre (ABT) presented its two week season at David H. Koch Theater. The first program I saw was three ballets beginning with a superb Symphonie Concertante, choreography by George Balanchine, music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, with two magnificent leading dancers, Stella Abrera and Gillian Murphy, supported ably by Alexandre Hammoudi. The ensemble rose to the occasion and danced perfectly. It was the highlight of the afternoon. The second ballet Garden Blue, choreography by Jessica Lang, music by Antonin Dvorak, with colorful set and costume design by Sarah Crowner, featured seven fine dancers, led by a brilliant Christine Shevchenko. The third ballet was Fancy Free, choreography by Jerome Robbins, music by Leonard Bernstein, which is a crowd pleaser about three sailors in 1944 enjoying a night in New York City. Aaron Scott, Thomas Forster and Calvin Royal II were the amusing sailors.. They were marvelous,  and the audience granted them a tumultuous applause. It was a wonderful afternoon of glorious ballet.

American Ballet Theatre (ABT) presented a similar program the next afternoon. It began with Symphonie Concertante with the same cast as the day before. It was a delight to see it again. It was again the highlight of the program. The third ballet was Fancy Free. This time it had a different cast, and the three sailors, Hernan Cornejo, Cory Stearns and James Whiteside, were wonderful. The second ballet Songs of Bukvina, choreography by Alexei Ratmansky, music by Leonid Desyanikov, played at the piano by Jacek Mysinski, is a dance piece for five couples, all fine dancers, headed by the always brilliant Isabella Boyston. The music, however, was less interesting. It was another enjoyable afternoon of marvelous ballet.

 



Happy Birthday, Wanda June
, by Kurt Vonnegut, at the Duke on  42nd Street, is a production  of the Wheelhouse Theater Company. A husband (Jason O'Connell) returns home after a eight year absence, searching for diamonds in the Amazon jungle. His wife (Kate MacCluggage) is now engaged to a doctor who lives in an apartment across her hall. The husband is a violent man, who during various wars, enjoyed killing people and wild animals. Wanda Jean (Brie Zimmer) (photo below) is already in heaven. It is a wild story, and the seven actors are superb, especially the three mentioned above. Brie is only eight years old. Jeff Wise directed the play, and we celebrated at a opening night party at the Brazen Tavern, 356 West 44th St.

The Ferryman
, by Jez Butterworth, at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, is a remarkable play. After watching it for 3 hours and 15 minutes, you will feel you have been immersed in a Northern Ireland farm with an enormous cast, expertly directed by Sam Mendes. Everyone in the cast gives a brilliant performance, and each one is given a moment to shine. It takes place in 1981, when the harvest is celebrated with a wonderful celebration. In act II, we witness the celebration with singing, and dancing, which is the highlight of the production. This is also the period where the IRA have become very violent with bombings, and nine political prisoners have died in prison on a hunger strike. Three IRA members arrive at the party, and an ominous tone pervades the atmosphere. It is one of the most impressive plays seen on Broadway in recent years, and I predict it will earn a well deserved Tony nominatio
n.
 

Philanthropist Jean Shafiroff (photo below) celebrated appearing on the cover of New York Lifestyles Magazine with an elegant party at her home on Park Avenue. Delicious hors d'oeuvres were served with champagne and fine wines. Jean is a beautiful, charming lady, and I have photographed her many times. She is always exquisitely dressed, and it is a pleasure to see her and know her. It was a delightful evening.

 

 
       

Brie Zimmer.  Photo by:  Aubrey Reuben

Jean Shafiroff.  Photo by:  Aubrey Reuben


 
 

Joyce Brooks and Gerard Mc Keon.  Photo by:  Rose Billings / Blacktiemagazine.com

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