Iain Webb and Margaret Barbieri of The Sarasota Ballet
to Participate in the 2013 Ashton Symposium in London
Sarasota, Fla. – Sept. 17, 2013 – Iain Webb, Director of The Sarasota Ballet and Margaret Barbieri, Assistant Director, will be participating in the Sept. 22 Ashton Symposium at The Royal Ballet School, Covent Garden, in London. Hosted by The Frederick Ashton Foundation, the one-day symposium will focus on the role of Ashton’s works today and into the future. Discussing their expertise in staging Ashton ballets, Webb and Barbieri are excited to be part of this important event.
With six sessions planned throughout the day, audience members will get the chance to hear 23 industry experts speak on the following topics:
· The Continuing Power and Ambition of Ashton’s Work
· What Makes an Ashton Work an Ashton Work
· The Changing Training and Perceptions of Dancers
· Masterclass: The Dream
· Staging an Ashton Ballet
· Securing Ashton’s Legacy for the Future
Webb, who is already in London and networking with leaders within the ballet world, will be joined by Barbieri later today.“Iain and I feel privileged and honored to be invited to take part in the Ashton Symposium. It goes without saying that the Ashton ballets, and Sir Fred himself, are very special to us both,” Barbieri explained. “We are most fortunate to have danced so many of his ballets and to have been coached by him, and now it is a joy to bring his works to our dancers and to the Sarasota audiences. Because of our passion for the Ashton repertoire, The Sarasota Ballet will end its 23rd Season with a four-day Festival to honor Sir Fred.”
Webb and Barbieri have brought nine Ashton ballet’s to The Sarasota Ballet since 2007. Sited as being “America’s foremost exponent of Ashton ballets” by The New York Times, The Sarasota Ballet has received national and international acclaim for their rare and unique repertoire. Most recently, the Company staged Les Patineurs in their 2013 Ballet Across America III performance at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Their 2013-14 season, starting in October, features four additional Ashton works and will culminate with the four-day Ashton Festival in April, where 11 of the choreographer’s ballets will be performed.
About The Sarasota Ballet
Since 1990 The Sarasota Ballet, the Gulf Coast of Florida’s only professional ballet company, has been enriching lives, captivating emotions and strengthening the community through the art of dance. Under the leadership of Director Iain Webb, the Company’s expanded repertoire includes works by world-renowned choreographers such as Sir Frederick Ashton, Dame Ninette de Valois, Twyla Tharp, Antony Tudor, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, John Cranko, Hans van Manen, Andre Prokovsky, Dominic Walsh, Christopher Wheeldon and Matthew Bourne. Receiving national and international recognition for their diverse repertoire of rarely performed ballets, The Sarasota Ballet was recently noted by Sarah Kaufman, a dance critic for The Washington Post to be “…the jewel of this year’s ‘Ballet Across America,’” a 2013 showcase of the best ballet companies from across the nation
For more information, please visit or call (941) 359-0099
About The Ashton Festival
The 2014 Ashton Festival is being staged by The Sarasota Ballet to honor the life and works of the Royal Ballet’s founding choreographer, Sir Frederick Ashton (1909-88). As one of ballet’s most notable choreographers, Ashton has been a lead influence for The Sarasota Ballet’s repertoire since 2007, with the Company presenting more Ashton ballets each season than any other American troupe. A dance and theatre critic for the New York Times, Alastair Macaulay, noted “…The Sarasota Ballet has suddenly become America’s foremost exponent of Ashton ballets.” Held in Sarasota, Florida, the four day celebration spans from April 30th to May 3rd, and will feature lectures, demonstrations and an eclectic grouping of 11 Ashton ballets performed by The Sarasota Ballet.
For more information, please call (941) 359-0099 x110
Iain Webb and Margaret Barbieri – Photo credit Barbara Banks
Sir Frederick Ashton and Margaret Barbieri off stage of Ashton’s Two Pigeons – photo credit Spatt
Sir Frederick Ashton and Iain Webb off stage of Ashton’s La Fille mal Gardée