Pas de Cranberry 

After Thanksgiving you may not be able to fit into a leotard, but they sure can.

With family and friends gone, along with all the leftovers that they so rudely packed up with them, and the kitchen back in some semblance of its pre-Thanksgiving state, now is the time to rise from the turkey-induced coma and enjoy the Diablo Ballet's Thanksgiving Performances at the Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts.

The program features four pieces, starting with World Premiere by Nikolai Kabaniaev -- a tour de force for four men set to the classical music of Mendelssohn. Focusing on the technical brilliance and athleticism of the four dancers, Kabaniaev moves them in exploding leaps and elegant lines to display the very best of classical ballet.

Fluctuating Hemlines is the longest piece of the show and features the whole company plus two live drummers. It is a stylish, light-hearted ballet laced with irony and set to the percussive music of jazz composer Tigger Benford. Originally premiered in 1995, this work features fashionable '50s party clothes and elaborate wigs. The dancers eventually strip down to white unitards -- thereby breaking free from social constraints to express their true, individual selves. The Diablo Ballet's Victoria Montes describes the piece as "supercharged and bristling with energy. A very exciting piece."

The Petites by KT Nelson follows six dancers in an abstract work that explores the meaning and nuance of pas de deux, and is set to a musical compilation of artists including Arvo Pärt and John Cage.

The final piece is Bach de Trois, a jazzy ballet also choreographed by Kabaniaev. Bach's music is rearranged in a jazz score and accompanied by contemporary ballet and movements preformed by three people.


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