Selections From Ballet Minnesota Repertoire:   Beethoven 6th    Coppelia    Beethoven 9th    Rite of Spring    River Songs    Rhapsody In Blue     Sleeping Beauty      La Bayadere     Swan Lake    Giselle  
Beethoven 9th Mvt 1  Seg
Beethoven's 9th, Mvt 2
Beethoven 9th  Mvt 3    Seg
Beethoven 9th  Mvt 4   Seg
Company: 651-222-7919
Beethoven's    9TH  S Y M P H O N Y ...... Movements 1-4
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Choreographer:   Andrew Rist
Composer:  Ludwig Beethoven
Costumes:  Cheryl Rist
Sets:  Jim Arnold, Cythia Betz
Lighting:  Tom Campbell
Photography:  Dave Trayers

BMN Company
      Julia Heggerness, Erin Warn (on leave)
      Jennifer Bennett, Rebecca Pelletier
      David Schmidt, Allen Gregory
      Jordan Nelson, Garvin Jellison

      Robert Cleary as Beethoven, Maryann
      Johnson, Antone Gregory, Elizabeth Hobbs

CBA dancers
      Marisha Johnson, Rachelle Horowitz,
      Megan Simon, Maren Gray, Margaret
      Ulland, Anna Betz, Olivia Brunzell-
      Garrett, Maddie Klein, Juliana Johnson

Ballet Minnesota Premiere:
      Beethoven: 9th Symphony
         3rd Annual Fall Concert
         October 17, 2008
         Fitzgerald Theater,
         St Paul, Minnesota

Musical Premiere:
     May 7, 1824,    Vienna Austria

Beethoven's 9th Symphony  Mvt 1-4

Photo Gallery & Poem

Beethoven's 9th Symphony: Movement 1-4

Photography: Dave Trayers

Beethoven's 9thbow

Program & Notes

Beethoven's 9th Symphony: Movements 1-4


(2008. Beethoven's 9th Symphony. Ballet)

Composer ................. Ludwig Van Beethoven
Score .......................... Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op. 125: The Symphony of Joy
                                          Dedicated to: King Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia
Choreography ........... Andrew Rist
Costumes .................. Cheryl Rist
Sets ............................. Jim Arnold, Cynthia Betz
Lighting ....................... Tom Campbell
Premiere ..................... Friday, October 17, 2008    ( Fitzgerald Theater, St Paul, Minnesota )

Beethoven's 9 th Symphony is considered by many to be the greatest symphony ever written. Also, it should be noted that Beethoven was deaf when he wrote and premiered the 9 th Symphony.

           The first movement represents Beethoven thoughts constantly being transformed into muisc by the life around him, from the archduke Rudolph to his nephew Karl and memories of severe discipline by his father. Sprinkled throughout are moments of a glimpse into his composition enhanced by sillouette.

Beethoven ................................. Robert Cleary
The music ................................ Julia Heggernes,Jennifer Bennett, Rebecca Pelletier

             The following dancers represent Ludwig's musical thoughts.

Archduke Rudolph..................... Antone Gregory
                          Brother to the Emperor of Austria, a Halsburg,
                          he was a close friend and supporter of Beethoven.
                          More of Beethoven's musical pieces are dedicated to him than any other.

Johanna van Beethoven............. Megan Simon
                          Wife of Casper van Beethoven, Ludwig's brother, and mother of Karl

Johann van Beethoven............... Allen Gregory
                          Ludwig's father was very hard on his son,
                          trying to capitalize of Ludwig's musical talent

Karl van Beethoven..................... Elijah Heggerness
                          Ludwig forced the courts to award custory of his brother's son
                          to him instead of his mother Johanna.

Young Ludwig van Beethoven..... Eric Fong

Vendors........................................ Antone Gregory, Maryann Johnson, Elizabeth Hobbs

Towns people............................... Maren Gray, Megan Simon, Rachelle Horowitz,
                         Marisha Johnson, Margaret Ulland, Anna Betz, Olivia Brunzell-Garrett,
                         Maddie Klein, Juliana Johnson, Alle Gregory, Garvin Jellison, David
                         Schmidt, Jordan Nelson

      Imagine walking into orchestra hall, the conductor walks out and than the music begins only this time you not only hear but see the music.

Ludwig van Beethoven ................. Robert Cleary

Dancers/Orchestra ........................ Julia Heggernes, Jennifer Bennett, Rebecca Pelletier,
                       Allen Gregory, David Schmidt, Garvin Jellison, Maren Gray,
                       Megan Simon, Marisha Johnson, Rachelle Horowitz,
                       Margaret Ulland, Anna Betz, Olivia Brunzell-Garrett, Maddie Klein,
                       Juliana Johnson, Jordan Nelson

Upon Beethoven's death a letter was found among his personel posssions. The letter was to his "Immortal Beloved", a woman whom Beethoven loved above all other women.   There was no name in the letter.   This has caused many scholars to research and write books detailing why different women in his life was the unknown "Immortal Beloved". However, to this day there is still not a definite resolution on who the "Immortal Beloved" was.   This movement is devoted to Beethoven's "Immortal Beloved" and presents five different women in his life that different scholars believe was his "Immortal Beloved."   Also, the etheral presence of a woman being carried by three men represents the spirit of all the women joined as one into the unknown Immortal Beloved.

Ludwig van Beethoven ............ Robert Cleary

Immortal Beloved Spirit............ Julia Heggernes

Men .............................................. Allen Gregory, David Schmidt, Garvin Jellison, Jordan Nelson

Music ........................................... Margaret Ulland, Anna Betz, Olivia Brunzell-Garrett,
                                                           Madeline Klein, Juliana Johnson

Therese MALFATTI .................... Maren Gray
         Ludiwg wrote and gave her "Fur Elise" which was published after her and his death
         In 1809, Beethoven met Therese Malfatti, the daughter of one of his doctors. She may have been about 18-years-old and it is possible that he proposed to her but her family turned him down. He sent to Bonn to get his batismal certificate copied for wedding purposes.   Therese Malfatti became a pupil of Beethoven's, and - as with Giulietta - he fell in love with her and decided to propose marriage to her. She rejected him completely in 1810. However, he wrote a piece for her and when intoxicated dedcated the composition to her in an almost illegible writing, "Fur Therese" Later, upon her death, the piece was found in her possession. Since it was in Beethoven's own handwriting it was published. The publisher mistook the dedication as being "Fur Elise" and the peice has been known as that ever since.

Countess Anna Marie ERDODY .. Jennifer Bennett
         Ludwig wrote and dedicated 'Trio in D Major, The Ghost' to Anna Marie
         Beethoven first turned to Marie after his disappointment with Giulietta Guicciardi. Marie became close to Ludwig around 1803. Their bond grew stronger. He wrote to her as 'liebe, liebe, liebe, liebe' and he dedicated to her opus 70 (two trios) and opus 102 (two sonatas). The countess was a great friend to Ludwig, and he lived with her for some time in 1808. She was an excellent pianist and a great admirerer of Beethoven's works. Some biographers think that she had great influence over Beethoven and over his music. Also, in 1809, she participated in the successful search for rich patrons to support Beethoven.

Countess Giulietta GUICCIARDI: .. Rachelle Horowitz
        Dedicated Moonlight Sonata to her.
        Cousin of the Brunsvik sisters, Giulietta was Beethoven's student around 1801. Beethoven admitted to his friend Franz that the alleviation of loneliness had been wrought by another pupil, " a dear fascinating girl who loves me and whom I love. Giulietta was young and beautiful.   Greatly impressed with his musical genius, Giulietta did not mind his middling looks and general untidiness. Momentarily in love with Beethoven, she had a portrait done for him which he kept all his life. But she married Count Robert von Gallenbergin in 1803 , who was wealthier than the composer.

Amalle SEBALD ........................... >Rebecca Pelletier
          Amalie was a singer, notably at Berlin. She met Beethoven at Teplitz in 1811 and 1812.They were very close, as proven by ill in Teplitz she looked after him, bringing him chicken and soup.

Antonie BRENTANO ..................... Marisha Johnson
         Dedicated: 33 Variations for Piano in C major: on a Waltz by Diabelli
         Antonie, who was born in Vienna, had returned from Frankfurt to live there in 1809.  She met Beethoven and they became friends.  She was also married to Franz von Brentano, with four children, frequently in ill health and unhappy in her marriage. However Antone was a loyal, if not, loving wife to Franz.   Also the step-sister of Bettina Brentano, who organised the relationship bewteen Goethe and Beethoven. Antonie was at Vienna between 1809 - 1812, with her husband. In 1812, she was with her husband at Karlsbad.   The relationship was over by September.  Antonie, who had become pregnant again (in June), would leave Vienna with her life would do.  Beethoven's romantic aspirations were never the same again after that, and the stories of his infatuations with women diminished from this time, as he slid forever into middle age

         Beethoven had an intense adversarial relationship with God.   This 4 th movement reflects his struggle with God until at last resolving this relationship by composing the music for Schiller's "Ode to Joy". Beethoven first read Schiller's "Ode to Joy" when he was 19 and began a lifelong quest to one day set it to music. This is the first symphony to present choral music within its structure.

Ludwig Van Beethoven .......... Robert Cleary

Dancers ...................................... Julia Heggernes, Jennifer Bennett, Rebecca Pelletier
Allen Gregory, David Schmidt, Garvin Jellison, Maren Gray,
Megan Simon, Marisha Johnson, Rachelle Horowitz,
Margaret Ulland, Anna Betz, Olivia Brunzell-Garrett, Maddie Klein,
Juliana Johnson, Jordan Nelson

Zoo Provides Inspiration for Ballet Choreographer

Written by Louise Ernewein

Zoo Provides Inspirations For Ballet Choreographer
Louise Ernewein Woodbury Bulletin
Published Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Excerpts from the article:

     When ballet choreographer Andrew Rist was looking for inspiration this summer, he turned to a rather unusual source: The zoo.  Almost every other day over the summer, Rist could be found up at Como Zoo and Conservatory, headphones on, listening to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony as he watched the lions and tigers pace around.
     Rist, a Woodbury resident of 15 years, says his obsession with Como while contemplating the choreography for Ballet Minnesota’s free public fall production even led to a few concerned phone calls from his daughter.
     “My daughter would call me and say, ‘My friends are saying they keep seeing you there at the zoo, Dad,’” he said, smiling at the memory.
     “I would sit and watch the tigers — I would just sit and listen to the symphony through two or three times. It’s one hour and four minutes long. “You would see the animals move, or the way the trees were blowing in the wind, and an image would come into your mind.
    “There’s one image in the fourth movement [of the symphony] that I call the flock of birds, and it’s totally based on being at the zoo and seeing the movement happen.”
    Rist founded Ballet Minnesota with his wife, Cheryl, 21 years ago. Cheryl Rist does all the costume design for performances and has put together a wardrobe of long tuxedos, “Lord of the Rings”-style elf dresses, empire dresses and monks’ robe-style garments for the performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
    The couple operate their own studio, Classic Ballet Academy, out of their home on Chamberlain Road in Woodbury, from which many of the dancers of Ballet Minnesota have graduated.
    As well as animal-watching at Como, Rist said he also did plenty of people-watching, as well as a considerable amount of contemplation.
    “The animals just exist; they don’t have to buy clothes or anything — I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true. They just exist,” he said. “All these things you thought as a child, all these hopes and dreams come back to you there (at the zoo).
    “Just sitting and watching people — which you can go to the Mall of America and do, too — but you just watch how people interact. “That actually helped me in one of the scenes in the first movement.”

     Julia Heggernes, one of the company dancers who is also a Woodbury resident and 2004 graduate of Woodbury High School, says the experimental choreography of the Beethoven’s Ninth performance is fun to work with.
     “It’s really great, actually,” she said. “It’s been a lot of hard work, but it’s so much fun because you get to really experiment with the movement and how much you can do, and we don’t have to stay so closely perfect, which is a very hard thing to do in ballet. “[Andrew Rist] has been so encouraging, saying, ‘Just feel it, just have fun with it.’
     “For many years, I have been so particular — it’s like, you can only move your foot at this time, but this is more about dancing to the music.”

Dance discipline
     Heggernes, who will be performing as one of the “notes” of the symphony and as one of Beethoven’s “Immortal Beloved,” lives in the Colby Lake neighborhood of Woodbury.
     She started dancing at the age of eight, starting ballet classes because her mother thought it would teach her sometimes flighty daughter some discipline.
     She said her love of the art form grew over the years, taking a real hold over her when she reached 15 or 16 and would practice for hours every night, even negotiating with Woodbury High School principal Linda Plante to leave school early (after completing the necessary credits) to get in adequate rest before her rigorous nightly rehearsal schedule.
     Now, Heggernes says she spends 30-40 hours a week rehearsing at the Ballet Minnesota studio on East Fourth Street in St. Paul, a place which has become her second home since she started at the company in 2006.
     “The rehearsals are grueling and they can be tiresome, but I think it’s so much fun to be here every day and have great minds working together like this,” she said. “Andrew and Cheryl are like my second parents. They see me as much as my parents do, if not more. “I think of all these people as family; we cry together and laugh together.”

     The Ballet Minnesota performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony are free to the public and will be held on Friday, Oct. 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, Oct. 18 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., at the Fitzgerald Theater, 10 East Exchange Street, St. Paul.

To reserve tickets, call (651) 290-1221.