Three top-tier arts organizations in Central Ohio are finding strength in numbers. BalletMet Columbus, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Peter Stafford Wilson, and Opera Columbus gather upwards of 200 performers for four performances of "Twisted" at the Ohio Theatre, Sept. 25-28.
Three top-tier arts organizations in Central Ohio are finding strength in numbers. BalletMet Columbus, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and Chorus conducted by Peter Stafford Wilson, and Opera Columbus gather upwards of 200 performers for four performances of “Twisted” at the Ohio Theatre, Sept. 25-28.
“Twisted” intertwines the talents of dancers, singers and instrumentalists in 17 musical selections, chiefly from opera.
“We mostly picked pieces the audience would recognize, with a few surprises, and made sure every organization was equally represented in the program,” said Peggy Kriha Dye, Opera Columbus artistic director.
“We started with the music,” BalletMet’s Artistic Director Edwaard Liang said. “It was an easy process to begin, knowing we wanted to highlight each organization, but logistics and scheduling are always difficult. The whole team has been so vested in making this work.”
Liang, entering his second season as head of BalletMet, splits the choreographic duties with three others: San Francisco Ballet’s Val Caniparoli, Tulsa Ballet’s Ma Cong (“Temporal” in 2010), and 19-season BalletMet dancer Jimmy Orrante, who created the full-length “Great Gatsby” for the company in 2009.
The idea for the grand collaboration was hatched over drinks in July 2013 at Mitchell’s Steakhouse downtown. Dye, Liang and Columbus Association for the Performing Arts President Bill Conner “began talking about how we could collaborate, and eventually, this idea came about,” Dye recalled.
“Then we started dreaming and putting music together,” Liang said. “It has been a fantastic process.”
Liang “wanted pieces of music that would touch, move and inspire the team. We knew the excitement would translate to the audience and community.”
Caniparoli, Cong and Orrante each chose their top three musical selections.
“After all the other choreographers picked, I took the last two pieces,” Liang said. “That's what happens when you’re the boss.”