Press Releases

CPYB presents the internationally renowned Giselle
Desire, deception, betrayal and forgiveness from beyond the grave come to the Whitaker stage

Carlisle, Pa. (January 27, 2012)– Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet’s (CPYB) dramatic full-length production of Giselle will be performed at Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts. This production marks a world premiere staging by Alan Hineline, CPYB Resident Choreographer, after choreography by Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot and Marius Petipa. Giselle runs for three performances only: 1 & 7 p.m. on Saturday, April 21, and 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 22. Tickets range from $38-$14 and may be purchased by calling 717.214.ARTS (2787), in person at 222 Market Street in Harrisburg, or online at whitakercenter.org.

Since its Paris premiere in 1841, Giselle, ou Les Wilis, the original work’s full title, has become the epitome of ballet romanticism. Giselle tells of a young peasant girl cruelly betrayed by a nobleman disguised as a commoner. Unable to withstand the prince’s deception, Giselle dies of a broken heart only to join the ranks of the supernatural Wilis, restless spirits who have died from madness and heartbreak before their wedding day. As vengeful as they are entrancing, the Wilis lure young men into their lair – driving them to dance until they die. In a heartfelt display of forgiveness from beyond the grave, Giselle saves her beloved from certain death at the hands of her ghostly sisters.

"Giselle is one of my all-time favorite ballet stories,” said Hineline. “I’m excited to work with the CPYB dancers in bringing the story to life in ways that only they can.”

Dancing the lead role of this 170 year-old classical ballet demands technical perfection, poise, and dramatic skills. Two coaches will bring both their in-depth understanding and experience to the ballet: Canada’s National Ballet School faculty member and former National Ballet of Uzbekistan principal dancer Tatiana Tchernova and former San Francisco Ballet principal dancer and CPYB alumna Tina LeBlanc, a legendary Giselle in her own right.

Giselle combines every aspect of what makes a ballet great: passionate acting, breathtaking classical dance, exciting score, and a romantic story that captures the joys of love and despair of heartbreak,” commented CPYB Founding Artistic Director Marcia Dale Weary. “Giselle has long been one of my favorite ballets and I’m overjoyed to bring it to my students and the Whitaker stage.” 

Music director and conductor Dr. Cheung Chau brings the dancing to life with the Central Pennsylvania Symphony’s live performance of Adolphe Adam’s lyrical score. The use of well-developed themes illuminates the ballet’s musicality – a perfect accompaniment to a visual spectacle for the audience to get lost in. 

It is in Giselle that Petipa, who restaged the work in 1884, created the “ballet-blanc,” or corps of women, in white that has become a symbol of classical ballet. Veteran costume director Betty Smith utilizes airy, layered fabrics for the corps of 16 Wilis creating the illusion of appearance of the dancer floating delicately from the ground and moving skillfully into and through the air.   

CPYB will perform Giselle at Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts:

1 and 7 p.m. Saturday, April 21
2 p.m. Sunday, April 22
Tickets range from $38-$14
717.214.ARTS or visit whitakercenter.org

CPYB is supported by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Cultural Enrichment Fund.

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MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: The media is invited to attend upcoming rehearsals and speak with the performers and artistic staff about the performance. For more information, please contact Bonnie Schulte at 717.245.1191 or schulte@cpyb.org. Coverage opportunities of performances are also available. Contact Bonnie Schulte for arrangements and confirmation.

About Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet
Established in 1955 by Founding Artistic Director Marcia Dale Weary, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet is a nationally and internationally recognized school of classical ballet headquartered in Carlisle, Pa. CPYB’s mission is to inspire, educate and enrich the lives of our students and the region through training in and the performance of classical ballet. 

About CPYB Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Resident Choreographer Alan Hineline
Hineline brings a rare blend of business acumen and artistic expertise to one of the nation’s foremost schools of classical ballet. He comes directly to CPYB after serving as artistic director and chief operating officer (COO) of Ballet Philippines.

A sought-after choreographer and ballet master, Hineline’s work has appeared in the repertories of many companies in North America and has been received enthusiastically in performances around the globe. In 1997 at the invitation of Founding Artistic Director Marcia Dale Weary, Hineline was named resident choreographer for Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. During the last 15 years, he has created numerous ballets for this internationally acclaimed school and company. His body of work can be seen in the repertories of American Ballet Theatre Studio Company, Pennsylvania Ballet, Ballet Philippines, Atlanta Ballet, and The Juilliard Dance Ensemble, among many others. His work has been performed at the New York International Ballet Competition, the Aoyama International Ballet Festival in Tokyo, and  the International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi. He is the founder of CPYB’s choreographic initiative, ChoreoPlan. Among his many awards is the Choo-San Goh Award for Choreography from the Choo-San Goh and H. Robert Magee Foundation, as well as multiple National Choreography Awards from Regional Dance America. 

About Music Director and Conductor Dr. Cheung Chau
Dr. Chau is a National Arts Associate of Sigma Alpha Iota. He was awarded the first double doctorate in the history of the New England Conservatory (Boston) in wind ensemble conducting and cello. Chau has studied conducting with Frank Battisti at the New England Conservatory, and orchestral conducting with Jorma Panula at the Royal Conservatory of Sweden in Stockholm. Chau is also an accomplished cellist, and studied the cello with Colin Carr at the New England Conservatory. As cellist, Chau is member of the Atma Trio, with violinist/wife Blanka Bednarz and pianist Slawomir Dobrzanski. They perform in the United States, Germany, Italy, China, and tour regularly in Poland. They have also recorded works of Mendelssohn and Ravel for Polish label Acte Preable.

Chau is currently the Director of the Orchestra at University of Connecticut and serves as music director for the following: Central Pennsylvania Symphony, Sinfonietta Polonia in Poland, Manchester Symphony Orchestra and Chorale (2011/2012 Season), International Szymanowski Music Festival in Beijing (August 2011).

His global experience includes conducting: Nordhausen Philharmonic Orchestra (Germany), Filharmonica Marchigiana (Italy), Moscow Symphony Orchestra (Russia), Tianjin, Xiamen and Xinhua Philharmonic Orchestras (China), Lublin, Bialystok, Olsztyn, Kielce and Sudettic Philharmonic Orchestras (Poland), Gavle Symphony Orchestra (Sweden), Vaasa City Orchestra and the Sibelius Academy Orchestra (Finland), and Williamsport Symphony Orchestra (USA).