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Tuesday, March 19 , 2019, 12:14 pm | Fog/Mist 54º


State Street Ballet’s Jungle Book Swings Back Into The Granada

One performance only on March 24

The Jungle Book is choreographed by Rodney Gustafson, State Street Ballet artistic director.
The Jungle Book is choreographed by Rodney Gustafson, State Street Ballet artistic director. (David Bazemore)

The laws of the jungle will come to life at 2 p.m. March 24 in State Street Ballet's adaptation of The Jungle Book, Rudyard Kipling's classic collection of stories at The Granada Theatre, 1214 State St., Santa Barbara.

Choreographed by State Street Ballet Artistic Director Rodney Gustafson, with an original score by Czech composer and conductor Milan Svoboda, The Jungle Book premiered in 2009, and was hailed as “a joy to behold” and “visually stunning.”

Following the adventures of a young  boy, The Jungle Book transports audiences to a mystical land of wolves, snakes, monkeys and panthers, showcasing relationships and alliances in an iconic coming-of-age story.

Colorful, upbeat, and entertaining, this original production has toured throughout California and other parts of the Southwest. It returns to The Granada stage with additional new choreography by Kassandra Taylor Newberry, Marina Fliagina, Megan Philipp and William Soleau.

Svoboda, best known for his jazz compositions and scenic music for theater and film, wrote the score, which was recorded in Prague by the Symphonic Orchestra of the National Theatre and the Milan Svoboda Jazz Orchestra, featuring vocalist Yvetta Blanarovicova.

Jean-Francois Revon created the scenic design, and the sets were painted by Serena Shanary and Ismael Angaon. The elaborate animal costumes by A. Christina Giannini have been updated for this production with additional new designs by Nicole Thompson.

As part of its community outreach mission, State Street Ballet offers a Jungle Book educational experience for students in grades two through five.

Cecily Stewart, the company's education and outreach director, said she is “expecting 1,300 Santa Barbara School District students (bused to The Granada courtesy of the Léni Fé Bland Partnership for the Performing Arts) to see excerpts from the ballet, and participate in interactive movement and a question-and-answer session.”

Teachers have been provided with “a standards-based curriculum” for use in classrooms prior to the event. The outreach program is also part of the company's week of residency and Jungle Book performance at the William Saroyan Theatre, and will be presented to 5,000 Fresno students on March 1.

State Street Ballet's 2018-19 season is funded by Tim Mikel, Margo-Cohen Feinberg and Robert Feinberg. The Jungle Book performance is sponsored by Sara Miller McCune, with additional funding provided by Lillian Lovelace, and Barbara Burger and Paul E. Munch.

Tickets to The Jungle Book available at granadasb.org, 805-899-2222 or The Granada box office. Ticket prices: $36; $46; $56; $104. Children 12 and under, $24. Discounts for groups of 10 or more.

— Barbara Burger for State Street Ballet.


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