Houston Ballet Final 2022-2023 Productions, Divergence and Swan Lake to take the Stage

Houston Ballet closes out the 2022-2023 season with two final blockbuster productions: Divergence, May 25 – June 4, and Swan Lake, June 8 – 18.

Divergence features three ballets from world renowned choreographers, Aszure Barton, Stanton Welch AM and Justin Peck, each with their own distinct style. Then the Company will finish the season with one of ballet’s most iconic works, Swan Lake. In Stanton Welch’s opulent production, the main characters are imbued with greater psychological complexity, giving the work a twenty-first-century pace.

Divergence: May 25 – June 4, 2023
Angular Momentum | Choreographer: Aszure Barton | Music: Mason Bates
Divergence | Choreographer: Stanton Welch AM | Music: Georges Bizet
Under the Folding Sky (World Premiere) | Choreographer: Justin Peck | Music: Philip Glass

Aszure Barton’s Angular Momentum returns to the stage for the first time since its premiere in 2012, paying homage to Space City with influences ranging from the city’s architecture to the moon landing.

With otherworldly costume design by Fritz Masten, a Houston-inspired set by lighting and scenic designer Burke Brown and Mason Bates’ hybrid orchestral-electronic score featuring archival NASA recordings, Angular Momentum takes the audience out of this world. Stanton Welch’s Divergence, the popular, unexpected, and explosive audience-favorite, is back on stage as a complete work for the first time since 2012. Divergence has become one of Houston Ballet’s signature works, earning critical acclaim and delighting audiences around the world with its bold and innovative choreography.

“It’s wonderful to bring Divergence back to the stage after such a long time. This work is one of my first ballets and still, 30 plus years later continues to challenge dancers and hopefully thrill audiences. It’s going to be an exciting adrenaline rush for all.” – Artistic Director Stanton Welch.

Rounding out the program is a world premiere from Tony Award-winning choreographer Justin Peck. His second commission for the Company, Under the Folding Sky is inspired by James Turrell’s Twilight Epiphany Skyspace at Rice University. Famed composer Philip Glass’s opera “The Photographer” sets the musical stage for designs from frequent Peck collaborators, costumes by design duo Reid Bartelme and Harriet Jung of Reid & Harriet, lighting by Brandon Sterling Baker and scenic design by Rice University alum Karl Jensen. Divergence showcases the full company at its best.

Swan Lake: June 8 – 18, 2023, Choreographer: Stanton Welch AM | Music: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

One of the world’s greatest love stories told through dance, Stanton Welch’s Swan Lake tells the iconic tale of the everlasting love between Prince Siegfried and maiden-turned-white-swan, Odette, as they are tested by evil knight Rothbart and his black-swan enchantress, Odile. Welch’s extravagant production uses Tchaikovsky’s full score to aplomb for this three-act masterpiece, with lavish costumes and set design inspired by John William Waterhouse’s painting The Lady of Shalott by the late Kristian Fredrikson. Swan Lake was the first full-length story ballet that Welch created on Houston Ballet as Artistic Director in 2006.

This will be Houston Ballet’s fifth time performing this opulent production, returning to the Wortham Theater Center for the first time since 2014 following a Hometown Tour across the Theater District to Jones Hall after Hurricane Harvey in 2018 and a critically acclaimed tour to the famed Tokyo Bunka Kaikan theater in Tokyo, Japan in October 2022.

For more information on Houston Ballet, visit https://www.houstonballet.org/.

Photos courtesy of Houston Ballet