Two new dance works on the Charlotte Ballet’s upcoming Innovative Works: Shakespeare Reinvented program have been created in partnership with the Department of Theatre. Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare Andrew Hartley and Dr. Lynne Conner, chair of the Department of Theatre, have worked closely with choreographers Peter Chu and Stephanie Martinez to explore Shakespeare through contemporary dance.
Using Shakespeare’s Hamlet as a foundation – and in particular its most famous soliloquy – Hartley and Chu examine mental illness in “Let Be.” Conner and Martinez consider gender roles and relationships by presenting couples from four different plays: Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Taming of the Shrew. The title of their work, “Unsex Me Here,” comes from Lady Macbeth’s plea to remove any “feminine” sensibilities that might prevent her from “masculine” ruthless ambition and strength.
Innovative Works will be performed at the Charlotte Ballet’s Center for Dance, January 25 through February 16.