Tag Archives: Company C Contemporary Ballet

Dennis Nahat Moves Onward

24 Jul

Following the lamentable events with Ballet San Jose’s organization, Dennis Nahat has been quite engrossed with bringing two productions from the People’s Republic of China to the United States.  In between the many trips he has made over the past eighteen months to Dalian, Dennis has also served on the Isadora Duncan Dance Award Committee and restaged his ballet Ontogony for Company C Contemporary Ballet.  A tall order, but Nahat moves steadily ahead, apparently a juggernaut of calm.

July 22 at a spacious hacienda-like establishment in Saratoga, Nahat provided press and supporters with a glimpse of what will be seen in San Jose October 3-13 under the title of Yulan  with music composed by by Paul Chihara, whose first ballet music was for Michael Smuin’s Shinju.

Apparently Nahat has enjoyed the vaunted position of having a  potential cast of thousands at his disposal, for Yulan will be followed by the The Terracotta Prince, due to open in Pasadena and travel north to San Jose for its engagement December 18-29.  Both the Prince and Yulan are slated for San Jose’s California Theatre, 345 South First Street, San Jose CA 95113.

Before further comments the Box Office telephone is 408-792-4111.

The productions are appearing through Theatre Ventures International, Nahat’s 501 (c) 3, non-profit organization, and United Star Performing Arts Corporation.  There is an interesting tie with San Jose’s sister city relationship with Dublin for the productions aim to raise funds for scholarship exchanges with Ireland’s capital city.

The video teasers for both productions signal that Cirque de Soleil might want to take notes. Acrobats abound,  magicians make their appearance, particularly in the Terracotta Prince production, with feats of balance there for the asking.  The dancers are small, beautifully proportioned and appear to be fearless.

Where Yulan starts with the cosmic egg or equivalent and works its way through geologic and recorded history, The Terracotta Prince relies on the lilting score of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker. Anyone familiar with that holiday perennial will enjoy the double treat of the music and seeing what acrobatic wonder from the noted Dalian Acrobatic Troupe fits into which variation  that Russian romantic composed.

Nahat, undeterred, has moved onward promising the Bay Area is going to enjoy some extraordinary razzle-dazzle. Lights, action and camera trot obediently behind one amazing theatrical conjurer in the person of Dennis Nahat.

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Dennis Nahat in China

27 Nov

While Dennis Nahat is busy in northern China [Dalian] preparing for the premiere of his extravagant production November 27-30, Company C  Contemporary Ballet with its headquarters in Walnut Creek have announced that his  Ontogeny, originally created for The Royal Swedish Ballet and danced later by American Ballet Theatre, will be danced in the company’s spring season, San Francisco May 2-4  at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts,  and May 9-12 at the Dean Lesher Center for the Arts in Walnut Creek.

Yulan is the title of the Nahat extravaganza;  from the photos of costumes, some rehearsal shots and conferences the production looks like full stop out!  If any one has seen the Nahat Blue Suede Shoes, Yulan apparently will enjoy even more theatrics.  Nahat writes ” We are in the last leg of rehearsal now..All is going well with the normal technical and staging problems that get solved each day …better and better each time.  The show looks wonderful and everyone who has been invited to see rehearsal is astounded at the versatility and beauty of the show.  I’m very proud of everyone.

“..Everyone is now very excited because they see what power they have in doing it right and that what I’ve asked for with each change and correction is meaningful…During the past three days it has been a revelation to all after I moved things around and corrected the entire stage set up and sound…. I said ‘The drawing is a drawing, not the stage.’  The show is terrific and is a knock out production. Everyone in the management of the Ministry of Culture from throughout the country is coming…shows are sold out. ”  Earlier Dennis had written ” Some guests are flying in from as far away as Chicago, Hong Kong and Japan, including some very prominent, high profile people from the Bay Area Asian Community.”

“Press conference went well– I was told it has been on the news all around China.. Beijing has reported hearing on radio stations as has Shanghai…What they are saying the news already is ‘We have never seen such a diverse production using so many of the talents of China and the US in one show.  It is stunning from beginning to end.

“…Program took me three weeks to compile – learning Chinese characters isn’t easy!  But I have great assistant…”

Earlier Dennis had written that Paul Chihara was having his welcome in the POC.  “Paul will be in Bejing for four days before coming here,  Since our recording he has become a big hit with the Beijing University Music Department and is setting up classes and collaborations now with the University in Los Angeles.  We sent him on a lecture on “Music Composition in Hollywood” — he was sensational.