Nashville Ballet’s Seven Deadly Sins

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Nashville Ballet and Ten Out of Tenn raise the bar on collaborative excellence in Music City!

Nashville Ballet presents:
Seven Deadly Sins featuring Ten Out of Tenn (Oct. 18 – 20, 2018; Ages 12 & older)
TPAC’s Polk Theater
505 Deaderick St., Nashville
615-782-4040 • nashvilleballet.com
Remaining showtimes: Fri – Sat 7:30 p.m.
Tickets: $30 – $72

A stunning evening of dance heats up TPAC’s Polk Theater stage with the return of Nashville Ballet’s compelling Seven Deadly Sins. It’s a night celebrating collaboration at its best. If you’re looking for a great date night outing, this is the hot ticket!

SUPERSTITIONS

The evening begins with the spectacular world premiere of Superstitions. Commissioned by Nashville Ballet, the 24-minute piece boasts Jennifer Archibald’s dynamic choreography. It challenges one’s perspective of ballet by blending traditional elements with ultra-modern moves with unique strokes like women lifting men.  Cristina Spinei’s fantastic musical backdrop perfectly complements the impeccable, dramatic movements by company dancers Mollie Sansone, Jon Upleger, Gerald Watson, Imani Sailers, Julia Eisen and Owen Thorne.

DOORWAY TO TEMPTATIONS

Following a 15-minute intermission, Seven Deadly Sins unfolds. It’s the exquisite brainchild of Nashville Ballet Resident Choreographer Christopher Stuart. It debuted in May 2017, and it’s a fabulous treat to experience it again a year later. It’s even more spellbinding now than its world premiere. The joint effort with the Ten Out of Tenn musicians collective yields an invigorating, exciting result. This is artistic collaboration at its absolute best. Seven Deadly Sins is a prime example of performance art perfection.

The prelude finds Jon Upleger (Protaganist) and Mollie Sansone (Agatho) dancing around forthcoming temptations. Stuart and Scott Leathers’ superior approach to set design is simple yet powerful. A series of drapes adorn the back of the stage framing a giant set of double doors.

The production’s concept engages the audience to examine the battles and temptations we face on a regular basis. And that includes the inevitable indulgence in sin. 

THE GATEWAY TO ONE’S SOUL

At the end of “Prelude,” the inevitable happens when Upleger crashes into the doors, a metaphor for the gateway to one’s soul. The doors open, releasing the seven worst offenders of human existence — Pride, Greed, Envy, Sloth, Gluttony, Lust and Wrath. Each of these manifestations of self take their turn and come to life through Stuart’s compelling choreography, which the Nashville Ballet dancers execute in flawless form.

What adds to the mesmerizing power of Seven Deadly Sins is the rich, original music written and performed by members Ten Out of Tenn — Amy Stroup, Butterfly Boucher, Erin McCarley, Gabe Dixon, Katie Herzig, k.s. Rhoads, Matthew Perryman Jones, Trent Dabbs and Will Sayles. This amazing collaboration makes a powerful impact as each sin comes to the forefront with its own fitting song and style. The cleverly penned tunes are succinct musical representations of their related transgressions, including “Can’t Bury My Weakness” (Pride),  “I Can’t Get Enough of Everything” (Gluttony), “All That I Want” (Lust) and “Like Thunder” (Wrath).

While the representation of each sin through song and dance is phenomenal, the undeniable standout performance is Sloth. Erin McCarley and k.s. Rhoads’ “I Feel It Too Much” provides the perfect musical backdrop with its dreamy, drowsy, lazy tempo and cadence. Kayla Rowser again delivers a captivating performance with much fluidity and utmost style. This sophisticated dancer remains Nashville Ballet’s shining gem.

ATONEMENT

While this powerful production of Seven Deadly Sins takes the audience on a breathtaking journey through humanity’s flaws, it ends on the path to atonement. After all the sinning is done, the full cast joins together for the stunning “Redemption” number. The finale magically represents the power of grace in a way that makes your soul feel purer than the sky behind the rain … and there’s some literal waterworks in the mix that will blow you away!

 

Chad Young is the managing editor and arts/entertainment editor for this publication.

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