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Michelle Tabnick
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Francis Patrelle to be honored with Kaatsbaan "Playing Field" Award

by Michelle Tabnick
November 23, 2014
Francis Patrelle, founder of Dances Patrelle will be honored with the Kaatsbaan Award at the Starburst of Dance Gala on November 15, 2014 at the Kaatsbaan International Dance Center. For more information on the gala, visit http://www.kaatsbaan.org/events.html.

The evening benefits Kaatsbaan's residency programs and honors the exceptional and unique ar-tistic and choreographic talents of Francis Patrelle, Zvi Gotheiner, and Jacqulyn Buglisi with the first ever Kaatsbaan Playing Field Awards.

"I am very grateful to be included with these illustrious choreographers, knowing and enjoying both Zvi's and Jacqulyn's works," said Francis Patrelle. "Kaatsbaan founders Greg and Bentley have been supportive of my work from the very beginning. Dances Patrelle has had the great pleasure to rehearse and perform "Pop," "The Hunt," "Madame X" (featuring Marcelo Gomes and Sandra Brown), "Glad To Be Unhappy," and last season's "Gilbert & Sullivan, The Ballet!" at Kaatsbaan. Rehearsing and choreographing there have been some of the happiest and most pro-ductive periods of my career. I dream about doing it every season."

Francis Patrelle is Artistic Director and Resident Choreographer of Dances Patrelle. He has created dozens of ballets, including an entire series based upon the American Songbook, many of them for the greatest dancers of our age, including America's prima ballerina Cynthia Gregory. Mr. Patrelle has also choreographed extensively for opera, including Eugene Onegin and La Traviata for the Santa Fe Opera; Turandot for the Vienna State Opera; and Willie Stark, directed by Harold Prince, for the Houston Grand Opera, which was also performed at the Kennedy Center and televised on PBS's Great Performers Series. He has commissioned several scores from Patrick Soluri and made the ballet 212 to Manhattan School of Music President Robert Sirota's 1st Symphony.

Mr. Patrelle's contributions to classical ballet include Romeo & Juliet and Firebird for the Albany Berkshire Ballet; a full-length Swan Lake for St. Louis Ballet; and a full-length "Macbeth," "The Yorkville Nutcracker," and "Gilbert & Sullivan, The Ballet!" for Dances Patrelle.

Francis is also a gifted and passionate teacher. On the faculty of Manhattan School of Music since 1981, he has also long served on the faculty at Ballet Academy East, where he is Director of Choreographic Development. He has choreographed works for students at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Cuyahoga Valley Youth Ballet, Juilliard Dance Ensemble, and The Ballet School of Stamford. In 1999, Francis was presented the Arts Recognition Tribute Award (the ARTY) by the Long Island Arts Council in honor of his outstanding commitment and contribu-tion to the arts on Long Island and throughout the region. Mr. Patrelle has received three Dance Magazine Foundation grants for new ballets. In 2008, he was honored with the prestigious Choo San Goh Award for Choreography by the Choo San Goh and H. Robert Magee Foundation in support of his new ballet Is That All There Is?

Dances Patrelle (dP) is a dynamic professional ballet company celebrating its 25th season! dP presents two annual seasons in New York — the timeless holiday tradition, "The Yorkville Nut-cracker," and a spring repertory season featuring world premieres and classic Patrelle favorites. Mr. Patrelle's body of work includes over 50 original ballets choreographed for Dances Patrelle, and spans an incredibly wide range of styles, from his beloved American Songbook collection, to such contemporary classics as "Madame X," "Macbeth" and "Rhapsody in Blue". Heralded by Lynn Garafola in Dance Magazine as a choreographer with "a personal vision…classical because it is rooted in metaphor and symbolic language [and] populist because of its legibility and broad cul-tural resonance," Patrelle has also cultivated a long-time collaboration with composer Patrick Soluri, commissioning four original scores including 2009's "Murder at the Masque" for dP's 20th Anniversary. Known for attracting the great talent of each generation, Dances Patrelle is pleased to count ballet stars such as Marcelo Gomes, Jenifer Ringer, Donald Williams, Lourdes Lopez, and Cynthia Gregory among its dancers. For 25 seasons, Dances Patrelle has tapped into the human experience, connecting intimately with the audience and continuously reinventing dra-matic dance. In 2013, the company was named the resident ballet company of the Kaatsbaan In-ternational Dance Center.

"In Francis Patrelle's ballets, the characters come alive. His choreography is full of heart and soul." – Cynthia Gregory, Prima Ballerina

For more information, visit www.dancespatrelle.org.
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