Boston Ballet to present ‘Parts In Suite’

Paulo Arrais and Lia Cirio in Jorma Elo workBoston Ballet’s spring season opens with Parts In Suite, a program of works by three of today’s most prolific choreographers: William Forsythe, Justin Peck and Jorma Elo. The program opens with Elo’s Bach Cello Suites with live musical accompaniment by cellist Sergey Antonov. In Creases marks the company’s debut in a work by New York City Ballet Resident Choreographer Justin Peck. Embarking on the second year of a five-year partnership with Forsythe, Boston Ballet presents the company premiere of his Pas/Parts 2016Parts In Suite runs March 9–April 7 at the Boston Opera House.


Parts In Suite will give audiences a taste of some of the best and brightest choreographers working today,” said Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen. “Their fresh and vibrant works explore ballet’s classical heritage in a contemporary way. I think audiences will enjoy seeing how this art form is progressing in the 21st century.”


Bach Cello Suites


Boston Ballet Resident Choreographer Jorma Elo’s Bach Cello Suites returns after a successful premiere in 2015. It features 10 dancers and is set to Johann Sebastian Bach’s Cello Suites Nos. 1 & 2, with a solo cellist performing onstage. Bach Cello Suites is a true Boston Ballet creation with set design by Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen, costume design by Charles Heightchew and lighting design by John Cuff. Sergey Antonov, winner of the prestigious Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow in 2007, will join Boston Ballet again as the cello soloist.


“I have enjoyed returning to Bach Cello Suites and exploring the movement and music again with the dancers,” said Elo. “Working with a different cast of both new and returning dancers brings a fresh perspective to the work.”


Finnish-born Elo was appointed Boston Ballet’s resident choreographer in 2005. He has created 15 works for the company, all of which were world premieres, including Fifth Symphony of Jean Sibelius and Creatures of Egmont.


Seo Hye Han and Justin Peck rehearsingIn Creases


In Creases is the first of Peck’s work performed by Boston Ballet. Eight dancers, accompanied by two pianists onstage performing Philip Glass’ Four Movements for Two Pianos, showcase Peck’s trademark ability to create unique, geometric patterns of corps de ballet movement. In Creases premiered in 2012 and was Peck’s first work choreographed for New York City Ballet.


“I’ve been eager to work with Boston Ballet for several years,” said Peck. “Working with these dancers on one of the first major ballets I’ve created has been an incredibly enjoyable process. I look forward to seeing how they interpret the movement and put their own special mark on it.”


A soloist with New York City Ballet as well as the company’s resident choreographer, Peck has worked with companies across the U.S. and abroad during his meteoric career. He had his choreographic debut in 2009 and was appointed resident choreographer of NYCB in 2014. He’s currently serving as one of four interim artistic directors for NYCB. In addition to his work for the stage, Peck has choreographed for films with Vogue, Nowness, the Guggenheim Museum, and most recently, with rock band The National.


Pas/Parts 2016


Forsythe’s Pas/Parts 2016 adds another of his ballets to the company’s repertoire and marks the second year of Boston Ballet’s partnership with the world-renowned choreographer. Forsythe originally choreographed Pas/Parts for Paris Opera Ballet in 1999 and revised it in 2016 for San Francisco Ballet. With an ensemble of 14 dancers performing to an electronic score by frequent Forsythe collaborator Thom Willems, Pas/Parts 2016 consists of 20 sections of brilliantly detailed and daring solos, duets, trios, quartets and ensemble movements.


San Francisco Ballet in William Forsythe workBoston Ballet established a five-year partnership with Forsythe in 2016 and currently has six of his works in the repertoire, including his full-length Artifact, which kicked off the collaboration. Forsythe danced with The Joffrey Ballet and Stuttgart Ballet, where he was appointed resident choreographer in 1976. In 1984, he began a 20-year tenure as director of Ballet Frankfurt. He later served as the director of The Forsythe Company—a new, independent ensemble based in Dresden and Frankfurt am Main, Germany—which he directed from 2005 to 2015. Forsythe is considered one of the most relevant artists in the world and has produced an incredible body of work that continues to be commissioned by the world’s most prestigious companies.


“In working on Pas/Parts 2016, the company and I have been able to deepen the relationship that we established during the first year of our partnership,” said Forsythe. “I now know how graciously the company performs under pressure, shining brightest when faced with choreographic challenge. I have aligned this edition of Pas/Parts to highlight their delightful approach to the playfully perilous facets of the work.” 


All performances of Parts In Suite take place at the Boston Opera House. Tickets start at $35. For more information, visit or call 617-695-6955.


Photo (top): Paulo Arrais and Lia Cirio in Jorma Elo’s Bach Cello Suites. Photo by Rosalie O’ Connor. Photo (left): Seo Hye Han and Justin Peck rehearsing Peck’s In Creases. Photo by Sabi Varga of Varga Images. Photo (right): San Francisco Ballet in William Forsythe’s Pas Parts 2016. Photo by Erik Tomasson.