Twin Cities Ballet of Minnesota will present “Pink Floyd’s The Wall: A Rock Ballet” at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 28 and 29 at the Lakeville South High School theater.
Based on Pink Floyd’s iconic 1979 rock opera, “The Wall” world premiere in Minneapolis sold out every show before it opened and garnered local and national attention. Equally popular with dance and ballet fans and Pink Floyd music fans, the show was an unprecedented success, organizers said. This year the show will be presented in Lakeville for the first time, as part of a fundraising program supporting the Lakeville Area Arts Center.
Artistic directors of Twin Cities Ballet and husband-wife duo, Rick and Denise Vogt, felt the circumstances were right to create this work — the right dancers, venue, music, band and timing — and were proved correct, with an overwhelming response and connection with the audience.
“Some of the strongest positive feedback we received was from die-hard Pink Floyd fans who had never seen a ballet before,” Rick Vogt said.
Local Pink Floyd tribute band leader Todd Bernston said: “Rick and Denise really get it, and they captured the emotions, story, and deepest meaning of ‘The Wall’ in an amazing way.”
“There are so many themes in ‘The Wall’ — like hurtful relationships, isolation, oppression and alienation — that are timeless and still very much worth exploring today,” Rick Vogt said. “Many people only know this work on a superficial level, humming along to the hit songs, without realizing the depth and complexities of the album and story arc; there is much more to this story than many realize, and that is what we have tried to bring out.
“This groundbreaking work features a live recording of St. Paul based Pink Floyd tribute band Run Like Hell, which brings a fresh but familiar take on the music to help bring this iconic work to life,” Rick Vogt said. “How often do you get to watch an original ballet set to classic rock music?”
The full-length contemporary ballet is based on the Vogts’ interpretation of the original album’s music and lyrics, rather than ideas or images from the 1982 film “Pink Floyd – The Wall,” though fans of both will experience and recognize some similarity simply because of the story arc and lyrics.
“We have our own creative ideas and inspiration for staging and movement — this is definitely not an attempt to replicate the movie,” Rick said, “and it is also quite different to interpret a story through dance and music rather than visual images, dialogue, animation, and locations.”
TCB interprets the original Pink Floyd rock opera’s music, themes, story arc, and lyrics through the prism of contemporary events, following the life of the main character, Pink, exploring his various relationships with family, teachers, lovers, wife and public. To shield himself from emotional pain, he builds a mental metaphorical wall, cutting himself off from pain but also beauty and happiness; he then spirals into drug abuse and insanity, puts himself on trial in his mind, and finally reconnects with the world.
“The Wall: A Rock Ballet” aims to resonate with modern audiences and prove to be both relevant and accessible.
Vogt describes Twin Cities Ballet of Minnesota as an innovative ballet company that is reigniting the passion for ballet by creating high quality, professional performances and meaningful educational opportunities for audiences and participants.
TCB introduces the artistry, discipline and athleticism of ballet and other dance forms to Minnesota communities through original performances, educational programs, and collaborative artistic events throughout the metro and beyond.
Tickets range from $25 to $30 and can be purchased at TwinCitiesBallet.org or by calling 952-452-3163.
Lakeville South High School is at 21135 Jacquard Ave.