Backstage Pass: Petrouchka/Carmen

Set renderings, costume and set elements, dancer interviews, studio rehearsal photos, and a sneak peek into a company rehearsal in the warehouse . . . we’ve got a smorgasbord of behind-the-scenes goodies from the Petrouchka/Carmen build for you.  The show opens next weekend, so check out the scoop here before you come see the finished product and watch all these elements in action!

Dancer Interviews

Alison Roper on playing Carmen: “The ballerina is usually pretty sweet, she’s usually a nice girl; or, like Black Swan, [where she’s] very clearly evil, with maybe not a lot of complexity. It’s pretty straightforward.  You’re either charming and sweet and ingenue, or the evil bitch.  And with Carmen I feel like it’s [more complex than that].”   Click here to read the whole thing!

Brian Simcoe on playing Petrouchka: “I’m discovering lots of similarities between Petrouchka and myself, actually.  He’s supposed to be very free-spirited, independent, doesn’t like to be controlled . . . that’s one of my secret fires.  He likes to break the mold, that kind of thing.” Click here to read the whole thing!

Studio Rehearsals

Red boots and sassy skirts . . . soldiers and puppets . . . it’s been a chaotic but exciting rehearsal period in the OBT studios, with two world premieres going at once, and lots of dancers running back and forth between studios to learn roles in both.  Click on these photos to go to the OBT Flickr photostream and see even more!

The Set Design

Lighting designer Michael Mazzola let us sneak a peek at his gorgeous renderings for the Petrouchka and Carmen sets.  You’ll recognize bits and pieces of this in the set design photos below.


Christopher Stowell shows the dancers a set model during Petrouchka/Carmen rehearsal.

Building The Set

Mirror, mirror, on the . . . floor?  Here’s a sneak peek at some of the scenic elements from the Petrouchka/Carmen build.  Click here to see more on our Flickr stream!

Inside the Costume Shop

Julia Rowe and Lucas Threefoot get fitted for their costumes, designed for this world premiere production by Mark Zappone.  Click the photos to go to our Flickr photostream and see even more!

A Dancer’s-Eye View of the Warehouse Rehearsal

The Petrouchka set is currently living in the OBT warehouse, where choreographer Nicolo Fonte took the cast to rehearse so they could practice moving around on it before load-in this weekend.  Dancer Candace Bouchard snapped some behind-the-scenes photos on her phone for us.

Wondering how all these pieces fit together?  Check out this sneak peek of the set in motion, shot by lighting designer Michael Mazzola!

Want More?

“They liked Act I, and a few songs in Act II got some applause, but by the time Acts III and IV came around, and the opera’s sex-and-violence themes surged to the forefront, the performers were greeted with stony silence.”  Read more about the history of Bizet’s Carmen here.

Choreographer Christopher Stowell: “I thought about these characters somewhat differently than either Mérimée or Bizet did.  It’s important to me that Carmen’s not just a promiscuous woman.  She’s self-destructive, and that self-destructiveness comes out in sexual ways . . .” Get your multimedia Carmen study guide here, including a playlist of songs about jealousy created from submissions from our Facebook fans, iTunes links to download the Carmen score, a whole roster of cinematic adaptations from Cecil B. DeMille to an independent art-house film from Spain, and photos of other OBT works choreographed by Christopher Stowell.

“As Rite of Spring slowly progressed, Stravinsky played around more and more with this new concert piece, both for variety and to give himself a mental break from the larger project at hand.”  Read more about the history of Stravinsky’s Petrouchka here.

Choreographer Nicolo Fonte: “What seemed most powerful to me in the original scenario of Petrouchka was that the character of the puppet Petrouchka had more life than he was supposed to have . . .” Get your multimedia Petrouchka study guide here, including a guide to books and movies about questioning reality created by submissions from our Facebook fans, iTunes links to download the Petrouchka score, and video clips of other OBT works choreographed by Nicolo Fonte.

Click here to buy tickets to the show, which runs October 8-15 at the Keller Auditorium!

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