William Soleau Choreographer

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Misa Criolla by William Soleau - Richmond Ballet (2008)


Full reviews available on request

The Courier-Journal (Shades of Gershwin)
"The Louisville Ballet went Broadway last night with a riotous tribute to the genius of George Gershwin. Or maybe the company went Hollywood. Whatever, it was a gloriously entertaining evening, brought to a spectacular climax with the premiere of William Soleau's 'Shades of Gershwin. ...'Shades of Gershwin' is destined to be one of the most popular hits in the Louisville Ballet's repertory. At its end, last night's audience roared approval."
William Mootz
Virginia Gazette (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
"Saturday's matinee in the Carpenter Theatre was one of the most magical dance moments I've seen, one that fully embraced a full spectrum of imagination and design... Most importantly, it was shaped by the imaginative choreography of internationally acclaimed William Soleau, who set this work on the company in 2006 for its world premiere. His creativity brilliantly brought together all elements into a cohesive whole that was inspired by Mendelssohn's rich score and Shakespeare's lyrical text. Soleau's stated desire to craft dance that tells stories was seen here where his meticulously crafted choreography found every movement, both large and small, responding to the pulse and dynamics of the score and the subtleties of the text, merging all into a visually delightful telling of the tale."
John Shulman
The Examiner LA (An American Tango)
"'An American Tango'' is passionate, beautiful and so very good. I hope the show moves to Broadway, where it belongs"
Joan Alperin Schwartz
Sun-Sentinel (Starry Night)
"...It's audacious in structure, compelling in tone and an altogether captivating piece of dance-theater. It owes more to the theatrical tradition of Europe's choreographers than to the neo-classic vein that's flourishing in this country, and in that sense, is refreshing in the chances it takes. It's a bold step on the continuum for Ballet Florida, and a triumph of direction for Soleau."
Kristy Montee
DanceChannelTV (Appalachian Spring)
"One gesture reserved for the young girl, a vibrating open hand reveals her anxiety in two key moments. It is only the audience which sees the movement, making the gesture that much more compelling. These are moments when you sense a truly gifted choreographer at work, one who is capable of revealing much but with surprising restraint."
Stephen Woodruff
Richmond Times-Dispatch (Nuevo Tango)
"Ballet distills tango's essence...Even the props 'dance' in this classic-modern blend. Like most mature choreographers Soleau severely limits his range of 'props,' then proceeds to explore their creative potential fully. His use of the stools pays particular big rewards in 'Nuevo Tango,' perhaps his most satisfying blending yet of ballet form with modern and jazz dance sensibility."
Roy Proctor
CASA Magazine (Carmen)
"Choreographer William Soleau has created a stunningly elegant and exquisitely beautiful work of visual as well as dance art with this fresh production... A packed house was justifiably rapturous, and roared their approval."
Dan Kepl
The Honolulu Advertiser (Between Spaces)
"The audience was silent throughout; I was emotionally drained at the end of one of the art's most dramatically compelling creations. Such art! Such emotion! And such economy of both to such great ends!"
Howard Driver
Virginia Style Weekly (Hymn)
"While the company has made a number of wise programming decisions this year, it was especially smart to bring in William Soleau's 'Hymn' for the work's first presentation since its debut with Dennis Wayne's Dancers. The piece is one of the most beautiful new ballets I've seen in the last decade."
Alynne Rhys 
Montecito Journal (An American Tango) Information
"The State Street Ballet has a bona fide hit on its hands with the world premiere of An Amercian Tango at the Lobero. The hugely entertaining tour de force has the 19-year-old company soaring to new theatrical hights with one of its most innovative productions ever."
Noozhawk (Carmina Burana)
"Carl Orff's Carmina Burana was given a remarkable choral and dance performance at the Granada last weekend, to the evident delight of an enthusiastic full-house audience. Saturday night's patrons were bowled over by the spectacle, and spectacle it was. Especially rewarding was the ballet choreography by William soleau. Carmina is a kind of beautiful monster. It is an immense musical work and Soleau created an equally profound dance vocabulary for it."
Margo Kline 
Style Weekly (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
"Soleau's choreography wove itself deeply into the fabric of Mendelssohn's music for a satisfying union of dance and sound. From the opening, when the fairies rushed the stage in great fluttering waves amidst the strings, to the stately closing strains of the royal celebrations at court, dancers and musicians worked in seamless harmony to tell the tale."
Lea Marshal
Critical Dance (Sonetos de Amor y Muerte)
"I highly recommend seeing Tango and Malambo --- it was one of their best programs from this past year. William Soleau's Sonetos de Amor y Muerte was haunting and my favorite work on the program."
Andre Yew
GAYRVA.COM (Chasing Cello)
"The dancers, at moments in hilarious ways, would pose and act out scenarios behind the panels, creating mini shadow dances. This gave the piece a sense of charm and wit that I found refreshing. Additionally, Soleau's use of inversions, quick footwork, and non-traditional lifts further affirm my beliefs that ballet can be highly technical as well as inventive.full-length ballet."
Rebecca Ferrell
Indianapolis News (Day at a Time)
"In the hands of this masterful choreographer, introspection turns into dances of pain, argument, loneliness, love and undaunted spirit...Every step, every gesture is spare and meaningful. In this gripping, cooperative venture between choreographer and dance company, Day at a Time could have become a full-length ballet. It is a pity it isn't."
Julie Goldsmith
Miami Entertainment & News Views Magazine (In Passing)
"His moving theater piece chronicles the cycles of life. The entire piece was a gripping, emotional portrait of life and death - a superb new work! ...Soleau has done nothing less than reinvent ballet as we know it, making classicism new again. Here is a work of true genius."

Lawrence Budmen
The Independent (Carmen)
At the 1875 opening of the opera, Carmen was denounced as superficial and immoral. The story’s shock value has waned in our modern soap-opera era, but in Soleau’s hands, its fiery gypsy passions are reignited, and its portrayal of the brutality of denied desire is as horrific as it is thrilling.
Elizabeth Schwyzer
Back Stage NYC (Between Spaces)
"He is certainly destined to become one of our most prolific dance creators with his utter dedication and sincerity of purpose. Between Spaces was a triumph for all concerned."
Allan Charlet
Santa Monica Mirror (An American Tango)
"The only sad thing is that 'An American Tango' The Story of Veloz and Yolanda had only two performances, so that those of you that didn't get to see this delicious program missed out on a very special dance experience. If this is preformed again in Santa Barbara, it's worth the drive."
Beverly Cohn
Richmond Times-Dispatch (Faure Melodies)
"Faure Melodies was an emotional and spiritual work. The music - performed by soprano Judith Cline and pianist John Walter - was haunting, but at times the silence was every bit as important as the music... The world premiere performance was enthusiastically received by the crowd of 1,040."
Lisa Crutchfield 
The Palm Beach Post (Starry Night)
"Premiere of 'Starry Night' Ballet Florida's finest effort...the full length ballet conceived and choreographed by Bill Soleau provided a thrilling opening night at the Royal Poinciana Playhouse. 'Starry Night' succeeded in its push toward the avant-garde using the resources of technology to create high drama.... The challenging and exquisite choreography flowed like oil on a canvas with the dancers working as a group, each providing a different nuance of color."
Herbert Perez-Vidal
Austin American-Statesman (Threads)
"The evening's big excitement though, was provided by 'Threads" a stirring new work by William Soleau, who has set his muscular study of urban attitudes to some John Adams music that accentuates its raw, sinewy style... 'Theads' was indeed a formidable highlight."
John Bustin
Los Angeles Times (Carmen)
"This "Carmen" could serve his company splendidly at home and on tour for years to come. It offers roles that display and develop artistry and enough choreographic originality to interest dancers and audiences alike. Plus, of course, a classic story that gets deeper with every retelling."
Lewis Segal
Richmond Times-Dispatch (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
“ 'A Midsummer Night’s Dream' is a fanciful blend of art forms: ballet, drama, comedy, orchestra, choral music and spoken word existing in near-perfect balance."
Julinda Lewis
The Orange County Register (Dream Dialogues)
"Dream Dialogues is one of the nicest pieces in the Ballet Pacifica's repertory that I have seen. The choreographer has left it up to the audience to fill in whatever story they want, but the ballet itself provokes many possible scenarios."
Laura Bleiberg
Santa Barbara News-Press (Cityscape)
"New York choreographer William Soleau scrapped the folk-rock ballet he had planned and instead created 'Cityscape', an elegiac evocation of a city stunned but alive. 'Cityscape' brought together the whole company in a series of moving tableaux of city life. Here the variety of body types and personal styles made sense, and Mr. Soleau used the dancers well, his choreography free and natural in composition… 'Cityscape' was a tasteful and engaging expression of feelings widely shared."
Michael Smith
Burnaby & Westminster News (Fanfare)
"Soleau's Fanfare, a complete contrast to (Forsythe's) In the Middle helped showcase the many sides of this ravishing young company. It is anchored more in the ballet tradition than was the rest of the program, and its use of white costumes suggested purity of movement, purity of intention and purity of dance. It was a piece that showcased Ballet British Columbia at its very best."
Michael Azenstadt
The Australian Age (Isle)
"Isle, a pas de deux by William Soleau, danced by him and Helene Roux, was the highlight of the program. Soleau who is a tremendous asset to the company both as dancer and choreographer showed further proof of his strength and artistry."
Patricia Laughlin
Richmond Times-Dispatch (Misa Criolla)
"Soleau's new "Missa Criolla" or "Creole Mass," is a stunningly beautiful work, from the dense yet warm burlap, movable benches and wooden slat set and earthy lighting, both designed by MK Stewart to Tamara Cobus' Spanish-dancer costumes to the exuberant and exhilarating dancing... Soleau and the dancers and designers have achieved a stunning total package that is an exceptional ballet."
Julinda Lewis
Morgunbladid (Notturno) (translated from Icelandic)
"Notturno is a lyrical ballet in neo-classical style. William Soleau created it for the Icelandic Ballet Company and this was its world premiere. This ballet was the high point of the evening. Notturno succeeds in captivating the audience."
Olafur Olafsson
Miami Herald (Unanswered Question)
"The Unanswered Question, a sextet that juxtaposed Charles Ives' famous score against haunting modern-dance partnerings and a photo collage of war casualties. One is tempted to tie a yellow ribbon around this piece and think about the Persian Gulf - and to urge Soleau to expand it into a full evening work."
Laurie Horn
Palm Beach Post (Triad)
"A highlight of the program is William Soleau's Triad, a gentle trio in shades of lavender. It has a modern look. Nothing is wasted, but there's no excess. It's airy, smooth, weightless."
John Eldridge
South China Morning Post (Universe & Isle)
"If 'Isle' established the Americans' world-class artistry, the main piece 'Universe' further demonstrated their capacity to draw performances of similar emotion from their Shanghai colleagues. "
Lianne Hackett
Santa Barbara News-Press (Nuevo Tango)
"Resident choreographer William Soleau's "Nuevo Tango" cast a spell no one wanted to awaken from."
Vickie Patik
Miami Herald (On the Air)
"On the Air - a far more complex and successful piece showing dancers on and off stage (or camera) in a stripped to-the-walls sound stage. Soleau's sense of drama created a good deal to watch in this piece - particularly the emotional relationships among dancers who walk in and out of an imaginary camera's range of vision, dropping their charged performance mien to reveal real emotions."
Laurie Horn
Richmond Times Dispatch (A Midsummer Night's Dream)
"The Richmond Ballet's lavish production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" on Friday night was a feast for the eyes and ears and a delight to the soul. This lovely and classy production offered something for everyone - lovers of music, dance, and drama - without sacrificing the integrity of any one art form."
Julinda Lewis
The Vancouver Review (Fanfare)
"Fanfare...choreographed by William Soleau, presented 12 dancers in a romantic and energetic sweep of movement. This piece, which premiered in 1990, has been called a poetry of dance and this certainly rings true as the rich mixture of dance, music and bodies delighted the audience."
Ross Michael Pink
Back Stage NYC (Isle)
"Here is a short but startling work, much of it conceived in a contemporary vein. Still, it isn't at odds with the music, but rather complements the score. Although a short piece, its depth and mood stay with you long after the conclusion."
Jennie Schulman
The Tampa Tribune (Passage)
"Soleau directs them into couplings that go by with the speed of Trisha Brown's work and the leaning uneasiness of a Jiri Kylian... What right of way is gained in such a Passage is provocative."
Porter Anderson
Austin American-Statesman (To Bach)
"Like Bach, Soleau knows when to move and when to stand still, offering just enough geometry and permutation to keep the eye following dancers from point to point."
Jerry Young
Sarasota Herald Tribune (Between Spaces)
"By turns attracted and repelled, tender and bristling, passionate and cold, trusting and suspicious, the couple on stage involved the audience completely in this absorbing drama... Soleau has created a dance with great dramatic impact and real originality."
Florence Fisher
Richmond Times-Dispatch (Chasing Cello)
"Studio Four also includes the premiere of William Soleau’s imaginatively inspired “Chasing Cello.” The neo-classic ballet is essentially a trio for cello, piano and eight dancers interacting as a visual manifestation of the musical score, much as a third instrument would. ...the work includes four tall, moveable panels that allow for creative and sometimes amusing shadow play. The panels also adapt and adjust the physical space, allowing us to “see the music and hear the dance”.
Julinda Lewis
Austin American-Statesman (Threads)
"Threads, by guest choreographer William Soleau, was the evening's most provocative premiere. All drapes were lifted to reveal backstage, with exposed electrical riggings, ladders and exit signs. Lambrou sat onstage reading a newspaper. Photographic strobe lights flashed in the background through the smoky haze… glimpses of human behavior, insecurities masked by bravado and the isolation of modern society… Threads presented a departure from Ballet Austin's usual fare, and I applaud it."
Sandra Lomax
Palm Beach Daily News (Symphonic Dances)
"The best had been saved for last... William Soleau's choreography proved a perfect vehicle for the dynamic and energetic music."
Herbert Perez-Vidal
Santa Barbara News-Press (Starry Night)
"When a work of art devastates the senses, it's a glorious calamity: an epiphany, longed for - if unconsciously - by auditors, but rarely experienced. When perfection in conception and execution is achieved, the mind rushes in revelatory overdrive, emotions rise up from atavistic calderas of suppressed collective memory, and the ordinary world in which we live day to day is forgotten, if only for a brief while. Such an experience is New York City-based choreographer William Soleau's "Starry Night," which this scribe saw on Sunday afternoon at The Granada, in an exquisite revival by State Street Ballet."
Daniel Kepl
Palm Beach Post (Passage)
"Marie Hale's company has always had its complement of attractive well trained dancers. Now, Hale finally seems to be finding choreographers capable of creating serious work likely to stand up well under repeated viewings. The company's association with choreographer William Soleau, which last fall yielded the short but striking pas de deux Isle, has now produced an even more satisfying full-company piece called Passage."
Jim Shertzer
Ballet International (Universe)
"...Soleau's stimulating choreography soared with spectacular lifts and a sense of cosmic energy. Most significant was its challenge to the Shanghai dancers, who experienced a new way of moving, and further contact with a foreign approach to dance."
Daryl Ries-Shen
Washington Post (Between Spaces)
"A compellingly expressionistic duet, Between Spaces, to music by Webern, danced with an impressive range of psychological and erotic overtones by its choreographer, company member William Soleau, and Christine Redpath."
Alan Kriegsman
Palm Beach Daily News (Isle)
"The piece almost re-defines the term "classical" as it takes its two dancers - clad in gleaming white leotards marked with marble-like veins - through an extraordinary series of movements, poses, holds and embraces, such as one might find in a series of sculptures by Rodin."
Juliette de Marcellus

More reviews are available upon request

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