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Balanchine + Ashton

Daily, February 19, 2020 - February 23, 2020
Times Vary

The Washington Ballet presents masterworks by two of the most influential choreographers of the 20th century: George Balanchine and Sir Frederick Ashton. The program highlights the contrasting and complimentary styles of two icons that continue to inspire and delight today’s audiences. Ashton’s Birthday Offering shares billing with Balanchine’s Slaughter on Tenth Avenue (© The George Balanchine Trust) – both company premieres. Balanchine’s exuberant and athletic Allegro Brillante (© The George Balanchine Trust) and the somber Me´ditation for Thai¨s, one of Ashton’s more sublime and legato creations, round out the program.

Slaughter on Tenth Avenue © The George Balanchine Trust (Company Premiere) | Choreography by George Balanchine -  Music by Richard Rogers

Slaughter on Tenth Avenue tells the story of a strip joint and the customer who falls for the Mob Boss’ girlfriend. Originally choreographed in 1936 as the ballet sequence in the Broadway musical On Your Toes, the adapted version became part of the repertoire of the New York City Ballet in 1968.

Allegro Brillante © The George Balanchine Trust | Choreography by George Balanchine - Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Allegro Brillante debuted in New York, March 1, 1956. Vigorous, precise, structured, and swift -  this 16 minute ballet for ten dancers is a sparkling example of Balanchine’s famous balletic style.

Birthday Offering (Company Premiere) | Choreography by Sir Frederick Ashton - Music by Alexander Glazunov, arranged by Robert Irving

Birthday Offering premiered in London on May 5, 1956 to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Royal Ballet. Seven couples perform a variety of variations, solos, and a robust mazurka for the male dancers climaxing in an elegant finale danced by the entire ensemble.

Me´ditation from Thai¨s (Offering (Company Premiere) | Choreography by Sir Frederick Ashton - Music by Jules Massenet 

The hauntingly romantic music for this delicate pas de deux was originally composed as the entr’acte for the opera Thai¨s. The two dancers are connected to the movement through the music that mirrors the choreography. This ballet premiered on March 21, 1971 in London.

  • Wednesday, February 19, 2020 at 8:00PM – Preview Night
  • Thursday, February 20, 2020 at 8:00PM – Opening Night
  • Friday, February 21, 2020 at 8:00PM
  • Saturday, February 22, 2020 at 2:00PM and 8:00PM
  • Sunday February 23, 2020 at 2:00PM and 7:00PM
Event Location

Eisenhower Theater
2700 F Street, NW,
Washington, DC 20566
Foggy Bottom


(202) 362-3606 or bberti () washingtonballet ! org

Admission: $25+


Posted by: John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts