La Jolla Light
Lonnie Burstein Hewitt
March 16, 2017

Dance into spring with La Jolla Music Society, March 18 and April 8

“La Jolla Music Society traces its roots back to 1941, when Nikolai Sokoloff, former conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra, originally founded the Musical Arts Society of La Jolla. Over the years, the organization has grown and prospered, adding dance to their offerings a decade ago.

This spring’s Dance Series programs are particularly appealing: two very different companies from two very different parts of the world — the south of France, and the Southern Hemisphere.

On March 18, at the Civic Theatre, Malandain Ballet Biarritz will present a new spin on the old tale of “Beauty and the Beast,” set to music by Tchaikovsky. Under the direction of choreographer Thierry Malandain, known for combining classical technique and contemporary vision, MBB has become one of Europe’s most popular dance companies since its beginnings in 1998, in the resort town of Biarritz, on France’s southwestern coast.

This full-length “Beauty,” called “beautiful and dark” by French reviewers after its 2015 premiere, is influenced by Jean Cocteau’s 1946 classic film and Malandain’s own inner demons, and brightened by “the choreographer’s acute sensitivity, wit and talent.” Here in its U.S. premiere, it’s as far from the new Disney film as you can imagine, but promises to be a stunning experience.”