The Washington Ballet Orchestra
The Washington Ballet Orchestra Returns
The Washington Ballet reaffirms its commitment to the presentation of performance to live music with the return of The Washington Ballet Orchestra. TWB Orchestra (created in the 1950’s) first played for Mary Day’s Washington School of Ballet in the National Cathedral. In 1961, The Washington Ballet Orchestra under the baton of Lloyd Geisler accompanied The Washington School of Ballet’s premiere of Mary Day’s The Nutcracker in Constitution Hall. Subsequent conductors for The Nutcracker include Tom Ludwig, Stephen Crout, and Leslie Dunner. Eventually, The Washington Ballet Orchestra was made up of freelance players, many of whom continued to play these annual holiday performances for years throughout the DC region. The Washington Ballet Orchestra also played in productions of Peter Pan, Romeo and Juliet, Jeux, Concerto Barocco, and Pillar of Fire. Under the direction of conductor Scott Speck, the Orchestra garnered critical acclaim in The New York Times for its work in the 2009 production of La Sylphide at the Kennedy Center. The Orchestra returned to the Warner Theatre to perform The Nutcracker for The School’s 40th anniversary season, and subsequently performed in productions of ALICE (in wonderland) and Sleepy Hollow.
“The return of TWB Orchestra marks an exciting stage for us as we value the contribution of live music to both the dancer and audience experience”, says Kent: “While our goal is to always perform to live musical accompaniment we are carefully introducing this element of performance given the confines of our budget and a thoughtful and measured approach to growth. We are pleased to offer live music in each of our mainstage performances this season.”