WHAT: Neglia Ballet's "Romeo and Juliet"
WHEN: 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday
WHERE: Rockwell Hall, Buffalo State College
ADMISSION: $20, $17 and $14, students and seniors half-price
Neglia Ballet is planning on putting its best foot forward this weekend. On tap for the 1-year-old ballet company, which grew out of the Neglia Conservatory Ballet School, is its first full-length production, "Romeo and Juliet."
The guest choreographer is Raphael Grigorian, a graduate of the famed Kirov Ballet School and a former principal dancer with the Moscow Festival Ballet. Guest artists will include Berto Rodriguez, a former soloist wit the Cuban National Ballet, as Mercutio, while Hernan Justo, a native of Argentina, will play Tybalt.
Sergio Neglia, who is artistic director of Neglia Ballet, plays Romeo, while his wife and the ballet company's executive director, Heidi Halt, performs the role of Lady Capulet. Neglia's frequent dance partner, Sherri Campagni, will be Juliet.
Halt says rehearsals have been hectic, with supervisory and scheduling responsibilities keeping her on her toes. "There are children in the first act, 14 older girls that fill out the corps de ballet. We have two guest artists that came in and learned, left, and just timing everybody's schedule together has been a pretty big challenge.
"I hope that people who don't normally see local companies will give us a try," says Halt, "because I think they will come away from the performance feeling moved, and hopefully, impressed. I think it's going to be a pretty spectacular show."