The Great Gatsby
Creating a full-length production from the ground up is truly a monumental task. I am reminded of the popular phrase “it takes a village” — from the initial concepts that develop into scripts and storyboards; the preliminary drawings and sketches that become sets, lighting and costumes; and of course simple melodies that become orchestral works. And that’s all before the casting, choreography, rehearsal and directing process. This Great Gatsby journey has brought a unique team of people together from around the world and right here in Pittsburgh. It has been an incredible adventure, and here we are at the opening!
I want to thank Artistic Director Terrence S. Orr and Executive Director Harris Ferris for trusting me with this production and for their unwavering support throughout the process. Composer Carl Davis and I began work on the musical score 18 months ago and it has been an honor to work with a true master. Janet Marie Groom, PBT’s costumier, and her wardrobe team have passionately brought the fashion and flair of the 1920s back to life on stage. Andrew Holland took on the challenge of adapting and reimagining the great Peter Farmer sets with care and artistic innovation. My longtime lighting designer Blaine Rittinger has once again skillfully created his own industrial light and magic effects for the production and was a key player on the creative team. Caitlin Steel, my assistant and rehearsal director, has been instrumental in creating this ballet; her energy and insights are truly inspirational.
The artists of PBT have embraced this story and deeply committed themselves to the complex characters of F. Scott Fitzgerald. It has been an honor to create and choreograph with this genuine group of talented individuals, bringing the story of The Great Gatsby to life.
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre – World Premiere February 8, 2019
Original Score by Carl Davis
Lighting Design – Blaine Rittinger
Set Design – Andrew Holland
Costume adaptation – Janet Groom Campbell
Rehearsal Director – Caitlin Steel
Original set designs – Peter Farmer
Photo Credits – Aimee DiAndrea