Shades of Sound at the Boston Ballet
Because it's the only "Shades of Something" that's actually worth seeing...
Boston Ballet's Shades of Sound opened last week, presenting Chroma, Episodes, and Black Cake along with one of the largest orchestras that the Boston Opera House has had in its history. (Orchestra members were literally spilling out of pit, with two of the percussionists perched on balconies in the audience.)
Speaking of music, I got a special thrill from correctly identifying Jack White's "The Hardest Button to Button" in Chroma. It was hard not to shimmy in my seat, and harder still not to be in awe of the range of Jack White's credentials.
Boston Ballet's dancers also exhibited incredible range across all three acts; Chroma was all about liquid contortions, while Episodes was more disciplined and polished, but still beautifully odd, with some of the choreography calling to mind Pan's Labyrinth-ian fantasy. Lastly, in Black Cake, dancers got to exercise their acting chops in a laugh-worthy portrayal of guests at a party, growing more and more intoxicated and belligerent with each swig of champagne. Rare titters and even some dialogue from the stage were shocking and delightfully naughty. (As were the - how can I put this - assless tuxedos worn by the male dancers. Just saying.)