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Ballet Classique Takes Stage in Dance Visions

O.C. Music and Dance Notes

February 16, 2002|CHRIS PASLES | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Eight dance students from the Conservatoire de Paris are at UC Irvine for a two-week residency that will culminate in their participation in the UCI Dance Visions concerts Thursday through Feb. 23 at the Irvine Barclay Theatre.

The eight are members of the Junior Ballet Classique, a training and touring troupe for which UCI dance professor--and former National Ballet of Canada principal dancer--David Allan created "Palladio" last spring. They will dance "Palladio" to music by Karl Jenkins on the UCI dance program, as well as on a Feb. 24 program that presents other repertory the troupe has recently toured.

"The residency is part of an exchange program I discussed with the company when I was creating 'Palladio' in Paris," Allan said.

"They asked, 'Do you really have dancers?' I said, 'We have a strong ballet program here at UCI,' and I was able to show that when I took six dancers to Paris in November to study. They studied with all these different dancers, choreographers and theater improvisational people. It ended up being quite a fantastic week."

The trip was sponsored by William J. Gillespie, an Orange County philanthropist and supporter of the UCI dance department. During their residency, the French students will take dance classes and rehearse with Allan or UCI faculty member Muriel Belmondo and take workshops in the Motion Capture Technology Studio directed by Lisa Naugle.

UCI has been invited to participate in the annual Festival of Dance at the Conservatoire de Paris in May 2003.

"They usually invite groups from prestigious academies," Allan said. "We'll be the first American group ever presented there, which is pretty exciting for a university."

* UCI Dance Visions program will be danced Thursday and Friday at 8 p.m. and Feb. 23 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. at Irvine Barclay Theatre, 4242 Campus Drive, Irvine. The Junior Ballet Classique will also dance a largely different program Feb. 24 at 3 p.m. at the Irvine theater. Tickets for Thursday, Saturday, Sunday afternoon: $15. Tickets for Friday and Saturday evenings: $18. (949) 854-4646.

Saddleback Concerto Contest Winners Perform

Winners of the 2001 Saddleback College Concerto Competition will appear with the Saddleback Symphony on Feb. 23 at 8 p.m. at McKinney Theatre on the Mission Viejo campus. The soloists include pianists Lisa Iwaki, Michael Zhang, Brian Kim and Audrey Pahmer. Carmen Cortez Dominguez will conduct.

Saddleback College is at 28000 Marguerite Parkway. Admission: $8. (949) 582-4656.

E-Competition to Link Pianos in U.S. and Japan

Yamaha will sponsor the first "International Piano-e-Competition" on the Internet in June. Finalists will compete in Minneapolis on a piano linked by technology to a Disklavier piano in Japan, where two of the judges will be. Top prize is $25,000, a recital at Alice Tully Hall in New York, a CD release on the Ten Thousand Lakes label and a Yamaha DC3 A Disklavier grand piano. Judges include Emmanuel Ax and Yefim Bronfman, judging from Japan, and seven judges in Minneapolis, including Abbey Simon. Applications must be postmarked by March 1. They are available online at www.piano-e-competition.com.

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