New Haven queues arts fest

Event features artists from 30 countries, 'ideas' forum

NEW HAVEN — A radical version of “Giselle,” produced by Ireland’s Fabulous Beast Dance Theater, the Dublin Theater Festival and London’s Barbican Center, will be one of the highlights of the ninth annual Intl. Festival of Arts & Ideas in New Haven in June.

Staged by Michael Keegan-Dolan, the new production takes the classic romantic ballet story of Theophile Gautier, but reimagines it with an electronic score, near all-male casting and the inclusion of spoken dialogue.

The New Haven festival, a 15-day, three-weekend event, runs June 11-26 and features scores of performing and visual artists from 30 countries in the fields of theater, music, dance, poetry and art. Taking advantage of the academic environs at Yale, the festival also has an “ideas” component featuring leading academics, writers and thinkers of the day. This year’s focus will be on science and politics.

Also featured in the theater lineup will be the U.S. premiere of Lithuania’s Oskaras Korsunovas Theater production of “Romeo and Juliet,” set in two warring pizza houses. The U.S. premiere of Lyrica Prods.’ “The Voyage Project,” staged by Peter Goldfarb, will feature seven young actors from Serbia, Romania, Hungary, Poland, Israel, Iraq (Kurdish) and the U.S. telling their personal stories. Solo perfs include visits by U.S. performer Danny Hoch, Australia’s Brian Lipson and South African satirist Pieter-Dirk Uys.

The music roster includes tap artist Savion Glover and musician Bobby McFerrin (U.S.); the world premiere of Mark O’Connor’s “American Seasons,” paired with Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons,” with Scott Yu and chamber orchestra Metamorphosen; Kungsbacka Piano Trio and Friends (Sweden); the electronic string quartet Ethel on Jazz (U.S.), Miya Masaoka (Japan); Warsaw Village Band and its U.S. premiere of “People’s Spring” (Poland); Mari Boine (Norway); Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Busi Mhlongo (South Africa); and the Omar Bolton Jazz Sextet (U.S.).

Event will also feature a hip-hop festival curated by Toni Blackman, whom the U.S. State Dept. named “ambassador of hip-hop.”

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