Ballet Arizona returns to desert garden

Desert Botanical GardenBallet Arizona has announced its season finale production, the world premiere of Eroica, the latest grand work from acclaimed Artistic Director Ib Andersen. Audiences are invited to experience the beauty of the Arizona desert, Andersen’s Ballet Arizona company and Beethoven’s Third Symphony in a production that promises to speak directly to the soul. Eroica will be performed May 15-June 2, 2018, at Desert Botanical Garden.


Eroica is the second new work in a series of five annual performances at the Garden that are made possible by gifts from the Dorrance Family Foundation, Carol and Randy Schilling, and supporters of the New Works Initiative.


Andersen’s previous work at the Garden inspired The New York Times chief dance critic Alastair Macaulay to designate Ballet Arizona as “one of the most enterprising companies anywhere”. In this newest production, Andersen challenges conventional expectations and reawakens the human spirit in an immersive tribute to the past, present and future. Eroica promises to be one of Andersen’s most important works, pushing the boundaries of ballet and pursuing a deeper understanding of what it is to be human today.


“I hope that people come out of this experience with a lot of different ideas and feelings,” Andersen said. “Eroica is going to be a very visual show, one that leaves you with an uplifting message in the end, with hope and trust in humanity.”


Andersen is deeply passionate about the work, his response to the divisive influences seen in today’s world.


Internationally acclaimed lighting designer Michael Korsch will illuminate the powerful energy on stage with colors and textures that sculpt the human body and underscore the uncommon beauty of desert surroundings. Celebrated costume designer Fabio Toblini reveals the dancers’ lithe figures with a playful and daring style that is as striking as it is beautiful. Underlying this visual feast is Beethoven’s celebrated Third Symphony, a score that transcended tradition and changed perspectives with its technical and emotional complexity, ushering in a new era of music.


With Andersen’s earlier works at the Garden, Topia and Round, drawing sellout crowds nearly every weekend, patrons are encouraged to purchase tickets well in advance. Options include upgraded table seating and stadium-style general admission seats with pricing starting at $40. Patrons can enhance their experience by arriving early to witness the behind-the-scenes magic as Ballet Arizona’s professional company dancers warm up on stage as the sun sets, as well enjoy a meal and cocktails available for purchase at the venue before the performance. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Ballet Arizona Box Office at 602-381-1096 or by visiting


Photo: Ballet Arizona dancers for Round. Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.