World famous all-male ballet to perform at Fairfield University's Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts


Image: Trockadero de Monte CarloAgile, inventive and always entertaining, the all-male Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo will take the stage at Fairfield University's Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts on Friday, Feb. 20, at 8 p.m. The performance will include the company's unforgettable take on "Swan Lake," and will be followed by an Art-to-Heart question and answer session.

Founded in 1974 by a group of ballet enthusiasts with a shared sense of humor, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo strives to turn traditional ballet on its head with playful parodies of some of the style's best-loved works, while maintaining a stunning level of technique and form. Dressed in tutus and toe shoes and bearing stage names like Fifi Barkova, Yurika Sakitumi and Jacques d'Aniels, the male dancers hope to enhance, not mock, the spirit of dance as an art form, delighting audiences along the way.

"Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo... remains one of the great comic creations of the American stage," wrote a reviewer for the San Francisco Examiner.

The Trocks, as the company is known to fans, first performed in late-late shows in Off-Off Broadway lofts, but quickly gained attention after critical essays and reviews in The New Yorker, The New York Times and The Village Voice. They were living proof that ballet could be fun and funny - and that men could, indeed, dance en pointe without losing their balance - and their reputation soon outgrew New York City.

During the 1975-76 season, the company made its first extended tours of the United States and Canada, following that over the years with stops in Holland, Madrid, Paris, Turin, and Vienna. The Trocks gained a wider audience through television, appearing in the United States opposite Shirley MacLaine, Dick Cavett and The Muppets, and have been the subject of solo specials in Japan, Great Britain, Germany and France.

The Trocks' many tours have met with popular and critical success. They've appeared in more than 500 cities around the world, including stops in Australia and Asia and forty tours of Europe. They are so popular in Japan, they've returned for nineteen annual summer tours, creating a national phenomenon that's spawned an active fan club.

While The Trocks often take on time-honored ballets, the repertoire includes classical and modern works by Merce Cunningham, Bob Fosse, Meg Harper, Agnes de Mille and Gary Pierce. They've distilled "Don Quixote" into one act and wowed audiences with a rousing "Stars & Stripes Forever." The Quick Center program features an excerpt from "La Vivandiere," a love story based in a Hungarian village; the underwater scene from the fairytale-based "The Humpback Horse;" and Tchaikovsky's "Swan Lake, Act II."

Trockadero dancers hail from all corners of the globe, from France to Ohio and Idaho to the Philippines. Led by General Director Eugene McDougle and Artistic Director Tory Dobrin, the company includes principals Carlos Garcia, Paul Ghiselin, Fernando Medina Gallego, Manolo Molina, Raffaele Morra and Jai Williams. The company's collective resume features the Dance Theater of Harlem, Joffrey Ensemble Dancers, Ballet Nacional de Colombia, Ballet de L'Opera de Nice, Dallas Ballet and the Merce Cunningham Repertory Group.

The company has a strong commitment to groups that support AIDS research and people living with AIDS. It appears regularly at benefits for several international AIDS organizations, including Dancers Responding to AIDS (DRA). The Quick Center performance will be dedicated to the memory of Trockadero dancers who have died of AIDS and other causes.

Tickets range from $25 to $40. For tickets, call the Quick Center box office at (203) 254-4010 or toll free at 1-877-ARTS-396. For more information, visit the website, www.quickcenter.com.

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Media Contact: Nancy Habetz, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2647, nhabetz@fairfield.edu

Posted on January 28, 2004

Vol. 36, No. 157