Back to Blog

Celebrate the “American Masters”

American Masters celebrates artists in music, choreography and dance.


American Masters is a diverse production with three World Premiere ballets from acclaimed choreographers James Kudelka, Edwaard Liang and David Nixon.

  1. Kudelka’s piece, titled “Real Life” is set to Caroline Shaw‘s “Partita for 8 Voices,” for which she became the youngest recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Music at age 30.
  2. Nixon’s piece, titled “Thinking of You” is set to the fourth movement of Aaron Copland’s 3rd Symphony. Copland is known as the “Dean of American Composers” and the ballet will feature retiring dancer Jimmy Orrante.
  3. Liang’s ballet is titled “The Art of War” after the ancient Chinese military treatise, which influenced Eastern and Western military thinking, business tactics and legal strategies. Liang’s piece is set to music by Michael Torke.

Completing the evening is legendary choreographer Jerome Robbins’ classic ballet “Fancy Free,” set to music by Leonard Bernstein. This 1944 ballet inspired the Broadway musical “On the Town.”

American Masters is Jimmy Orrante, Carrie West, Jackson Prescott Sarver, Courtney Muscroft and Christopher Ellis’ final production before retiring from the stage.





About the Choreographers

The choreographers are no less impressive than the music. James Kudelka is the National Ballet’s artist in residence and the former Artistic Director at the National Ballet of Canada. His works performed by BalletMet include Man in Black, The Rite of Spring, Gazebo Dances and The Four Seasons.

Edwaard Liang is the current Artistic Director at BalletMet and an internationally acclaimed and sought-after choreographer. His works performed by BalletMet include “Bachianas Brasileiras for Twisted, Wünderland, of Heaven & Earth and, most recently, Cinderella.

David Nixon is the Artistic Director at Northern Ballet and a former BalletMet Artistic Director. In his six years with BalletMet, he choreographed many repertory staples including The Nutcracker, Dracula, Beauty and the Beast and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The late Jerome Robbins was arguably one of the most extraordinary producers, directors and choreographers of the 20th century. His numerous stage productions include On the Town, The King And I, West Side Story and Fiddler on the Roof. Robbins was a five-time Tony award winner, a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors and a two-time Academy Award winner.