WANT TO GO?
"Partners and Pairs"
Presented by the Charleston Ballet
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday
WHERE: Civic Center Little Theater
COST: Adults $20, students and seniors $15 in advance; $5 more at the door
INFO: 304-342-6541 or www.thecharlestonballet.comCHARLESTON, W.Va. -- West Virginia's most powerful senator with the Charleston Ballet? It's true.
When Robert C. Byrd's fiddle music and narration meets Charleston's finest classical dancers, you get something entirely unexpected and accessible -- what director and choreographer Kim Pauley calls "fantasy square dancing."
"Squaredance," a new ballet set to familiar Appalachian music, is among the pieces to be performed this weekend at "Partners and Pairs," the Charleston Ballet's final performance of the season. Though the entire program is technically known as a mixed bill, Pauley is attracted to using themes to describe her creative products.
"I find people don't always recognize or understand the term mixed bill, but we can all relate easily to a theme," she said.
In 2011, the troupe performed a mixed bill program titled "Classic Country Rock 'n' Roll" to an engaged audience. Classical ballet can be intimidating, Pauley said, but she noticed that the audience at that program clapped and connected to the music and dance easily.
She wanted to do something similar, but to localize the music.
"We all grew up with square dancing. We took it in school," she laughed. "I did some research on popular square dancing tunes and fiddle music and discovered Senator Byrd's CD, 'Mountain Fiddler.'"