Tulsa Ballet Theatre is an authentic mom-and-pop business: an ensemble created 30 years ago by Moscelyne Larkin and Roman Jasinski (of the Original Ballet Russe and Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo) that currently features their son and daughter-in-law as principal dancers.
In a four-part program, Sunday at the Wadsworth Theater, Tulsa bloodlines emerged most distinctly in the dancers' approach to Leonide Massine's "Gaite Parisienne" (restaged by Eugene Slavin): confident and relaxed in a vintage character-comedy style that often seems beyond the comprehension of American dancers today.
Mismatched in height and rather effortful in what should have been rapturous duets, Roman L. Jasinski (the Baron) and Kimberly Smiley (the Glove Seller) looked far better apart--but Cynthia Crews (lead cancan dancer), Luciano Gomez (waiter and cancan emcee) and, especially, Marc Hughes (the Peruvian) achieved a level of individual flair that ignited the energetic and disciplined corps in the effervescent finale. Remarkable.
Unfortunately, the Jasinski-Larkin staging of "Swan Lake" (Act II) proved merely dutiful despite the interest of its Ballet Russe novelties--Benno helping partner Odette in the "White Swan" adagio, for instance (as Lev Ivanov originally intended).