This summer’s Evening in the House of Verlaine focuses on a risqué and ingenious retelling of the romantic, classic ballet Giselle that will both haunt and excite. Performed by House of Verlaine’s Exquisite Assemblage of Daring Classical Artists, the best in dance and burlesque, this Giselle is driven by hedonism, isolation, and vengeance. When power becomes the Willis - ghosts of scorned women - two young lovers trapped in a bed and breakfast find themselves haunted and manipulated to gripping end. With scenic design by Gregory Award-winning artist Julia Welch and choreography by internationally-known and widely awarded artist Lily Verlaine, this retelling is a new creation out of Seattle filled with beauty, creativity, and above all, dance.
Guests of this production will have an opportunity to preview Ms. Verlaine’s newest and upcoming work, a retelling of Romeo & Juliet, and will also be invited to a champagne toast at intermission to celebrate this latest artistic creation.
Beginning August 14 and ending August 30, House of Verlaine opens our doors to dancers at an intermediate or above level of ballet for a 90 minute, 10am class Monday-Friday. This class will be given by Lily Verlaine, Bruce Wells, Thomas Phelan and guest instructors (TBA) on a rotating basis. This class is faithful to the classical structure, emphasizing placement, breath and suppleness of the body. $15, recorded accompaniment.
Schedule August 21-25:
Monday: No class in observance of solar eclipse.
Tuesday: Dwight Hutton
Wednesday: Thomas Phelan
Thursday: Dwight Hutton
Friday: Thomas Phelan
Schedule August 14-18
Monday: Thomas Phelan
Tuesday: Rachel Gourd
Wednesday: Bruce Wells
Thursday: Rachel Gourd
Friday: Bruce Wells
About Bruce Wells:
As a soloist with The New York City Ballet Bruce Wells worked directly with and danced the ballets of George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Frederick Ashton, and Anthony Tudor.
In 1979 Mr. Wells joined E Virginia Williams Boston Ballet as principal dancer, resident choreographer & company teacher. Working with Violette Verdy in the following seasons & Rudolf Nureyev for three seasons. After touring to China in 1980 he choreographed for The Australian Ballet in 1981. In 1983-1989 he became The Associate Artistic Director under the direction of Bruce Marks.
Patricia Wilde invited Mr. Wells to join her Pittsburgh Ballet Theater from 1989-1995 as resident choreographer.
Kent Stowell & Francia Russell invited Bruce Wells on to the faculty of The Pacific Northwest Ballet in 1997 where he taught the main company as well as the top levels in the school. There he also created three one hour long ballets for children with narration. Snow White, Hansel & Gretel, & Pinocchio.
In September of 2017, Mr. Wells will create a new Beauty & the Beast for The Atlanta Ballet under the direction of Gennadi Nedvigin.
As a guest choreographer/teacher he has worked for Jacob’s Pillow, The Dance Theater of Harlem, The Dutch National Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Oregon Ballet Theater, Ballet Chicago, Orlando Ballet and many more.
About Rachel Gourd:
“A living, breathing work of art,” Lily Verlaine is the stage persona of Rachel Gourd, a classical ballet dancer and burlesque artist. She has studied at San Francisco Ballet and other notable schools with some of the most beloved names in ballet including David Howard, Laryssa Sklyanskaya, and Gelsey Kirkland. Currently she is under the private tutelage of Bruce Wells in Seattle. She has served as Artistic Director and Choreographer of Land of the Sweets, The Burlesque Nutcracker (2006), Through The Looking Glass: The Burlesque Alice In Wonderland (2009) L’Histoire de Melody Nelson (2010) Burlesco DiVino: Wine in Rome (2012) and Visions of Sugarplums: A Burlesque Nutcracker (2014). She is the founder and artistic director of House of Verlaine: An Exquisite Assemblage of Daring Classical Artists which examines classical ballet through ahedonistic, feminist lens. She is currently in development for her much-anticipated Giselle which will explore rather than assume lenience by a woman recovering from the experience of exploitation and betrayal.
Ms. Gourd has enjoyed teaching on the faculty of Spectrum Dance Theater, Issaquah Dance Theater and Action Dance Tacoma and is thrilled to be conducting classes this summer at Yaw Theater and finds Yaw’s motto, “To Deviate is a Virtue” a welcome and natural fit.
About Thomas Phelan:
Thomas Phelan is originally from Fort Collins, CO where he received his BA in Performing Arts from Colorado State University. After graduation he spent two years dancing for Alaska Dance Theatre in Anchorage. He then moved to Seattle to begin working with Whim W'Him. Since living in Seattle Thomas has had opportunities performing with Alana Rogers, The Robbie Turner Revue, the House of Verlaine, Ballet Bellevue, Olympic Ballet Theatre, and International Ballet Theatre.
House of Verlaine offers a peek into the creation process for two new daring ballets by Lily Verlaine, Giselle Revisited and a retelling of Romeo & Juliet. The two erotic ballets reset the classics with a hedonistic and feminist twist.
August 5th 6-9pm
YAW Theater in Georgetown
On August 5, House of Verlaine takes over Lily's longtime home-venue, the elegant Triple Door. For this evening's performance, we will be showing our fabulous Can-Can, stunning Tales of the Vienna Woods, Afternoon of Paris Original and excerpts from our evening-length work in development, Giselle Revisited.
This evening features sultry solo performances by Lily Verlaine and our special guests, Argentine tango superstars Eva Lucero and Patrico Touceda (featured dancers of Forever Tango and Cirque du Soleil's ZAIA).