Salt Lake City Performing Arts Scene Alive and Kicking with Ballet West, Utah Symphony and Lyric Opera Ensemble

February 13, 2010
Ballet West's Swan Lake

Christopher Ruud, Christiana Bennett, Ballet West

This weekend, the Performing Arts scene in Salt Lake City is offering a little bit of something for everyone.  With the myriad of choices, how do you decide which performance(s) to attend?  For my taste, there were four options, and I didn’t even peruse the Arts Calendar this weekend!

If you enjoy the ballet, Ballet West is performing one of the most famous ballets of all time, Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake.

Conducted this week by Gilbert Varga, the Utah Symphony is presenting Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 in E Minor, known commonly as the New World Symphony.  Also on the program is Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major,  K. 488, performed by pianist Jean-Philippe Collard.

If Opera suits you, the Lyric Opera Ensemble and the Paradigm Orchestra are performing excerpts from Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, or The Marriage of Figaro, at Libby Gardner Hall at the University of Utah.

In addition, this weekend Comedian Bill Cosby performs at Kingsbury Hall and while it’s not technically performing arts (to most people), there is a tattoo convention in town this weekend too!

Since I have a hard time choosing just one of these great performances (excluding Cosby and the tattoos – this time), I’ll be attending all three of these events.

Friday evening I attended Le Nozze di Figaro.  The Lyric Opera Ensemble’s presentation of The Marriage of Figaro was actually a trimmed version of the full opera, and it was done as a concert instead of an opera with sets and costumes.  Additionally, Dr. Robert Breault narrated the event, giving the audience the back story of the opera and what, and who, we were going to hear from.

The design of this presentation was great for opera novices like me.  The only thing missing was an English translation of the lyrics.  Can’t ask for everything I guess!

Libby Gardner Hall is gorgeous and there were unfortunately quite a few empty seats.  With Bill Cosby right next door, there was a bit of competition for parking in the area, but from my view, Le Nozze was well worth it!

Le Nozze has an additional performance on Saturday with a different cast of singers.  Friday’s artists were amazing, especially the Count, Countess and Figaro; wonderfully talented singers who have a bright future!

Ballet West’s Swan Lake runs through the 20th of February, and I’ll be catching that performance next weekend.  I’ve been waiting to see Swan Lake for a few months, so I can’t wait!  The Ballet West dancers are superb, and Christopher Ruud and Christiana Bennett make a beautiful pair onstage! I’ve seen them both in prior ballets, and am looking forward to seeing them in this classic, and apparently tragic, love story.

The Utah Symphony seems to have a new symphony every weekend and I’m having a tough time keeping up!  This week it’s Dvorak and Mozart, and next week, Maestro Keith Lockhart returns to the Utah Symphony in his new role as Conductor Emeritus for two weekends of concerts.  Exciting!

If you’re looking to attend some great performances, you have many options, but they all have very limited engagements.  My suggestions for Saturday night are 1 – Utah Lyric Opera, 2 – Utah Symphony and 3 – Ballet West (any time through the 20th!).  If you enjoy music and appreciate the performing arts, none will leave you disappointed!

Salt Lake City’s Performing Arts scene is fabulous and incredibly accessible.  There is so much to do and be a part of.  The Arts are hurting financially though and need your support.  Help keep these Arts alive and thriving by supporting the artists.  Go enjoy a show!

Ballet West Photo courtesy Ryan Galbraith, Zuma Photo. Pictured: Christopher Ruud and Christiana Bennett.

2 Responses to Salt Lake City Performing Arts Scene Alive and Kicking with Ballet West, Utah Symphony and Lyric Opera Ensemble
  1. […] Trackback Address. No Comments. Leave a Reply. Name (required) Mail (will not be published) …Salt Lake City Performing Arts Scene Alive and Kicking with …This weekend, the Performing Arts scene in Salt Lake City is offering a little bit of something for […]

  2. […] la Force) being played by Timothy Joel Carter.  I had seen Carter in the Lyric Opera Ensemble’s Le Nozze di Figaro earlier in the year and had become an instant fan.  His deep baritone voice was so rich, so […]

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