About The Company
With its glamorous mix of original choreography, music, and costumes, New York City–based dance company Ballets with a Twist has everything you need for an intoxicating evening of entertainment!
In the company’s signature program, Cocktail Hour, critically acclaimed dance-maker Marilyn Klaus’s extravagant ballet-vaudeville style shakes it up with Grammy-nominated Stephen Gaboury’s jazz and classical hip hop remixes. Ultra-chic costumes by Catherine Zehr complete the picture.
Klaus’s irreverent suite of dances brings iconic American drinks to life—saluting the elegance of cocktail culture as Martini, Mai Tai, Gimlet and more spring off the menu and onto the stage. The show has charmed audiences new and seasoned, and no wonder: The New York Times calls Klaus’s work “witty and fantastic.” The Huffington Post raves, “Klaus blasts the boundaries between high art and entertainment. We have seen the future of dance, and it is fun!”
Recent Company Highlights
Best of 2012: Ballets with a Twist rocked the house with Cyndi Lauper and Friends, at the Beacon Theatre, in New York City. The company presented Klaus’s ecstatic Holy Water, with live band.
Ballets with a Twist helped inaugurate the Hamilton Stage, a brand-new, state-of-the-art theater in Rahway, New Jersey. Bars, restaurants, and other venues throughout the city got in on the act by hosting previews of Cocktail Hour prior to the Hamilton season. The Union County Performing Arts Center invited Ballets With a Twist to be the entertainment for a visit by Rocco Landesman, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts.
Two seasons at XL Nightclub and Cabaret offered midtown New York City the coolest floor shows ever, including the premiere of a dance to Cyndi Lauper’s hit, True Colors, with a special appearance by the rock icon herself.
Best of 2011: Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts presented Cocktail Hour. A rock-concert atmosphere prevailed at The David Rubenstein Atrium, as a sell-out crowd cheered the company at every opportunity.
Other engagements that year included dance series and festivals, such as the Tribeca Film Festival, HOWL! Festival, and HBO Stage at Bryant Park.
Best of 2010: An exclusive performance at Teatro in Piazza, a Los Angeles outdoor theater, treated a stylish audience to an evening of Klaus’s work. The Huffington Post called Klaus a “hip ballet romantic,” who is “unabashedly concerned with entertaining her audience.”
Throughout that year, Tribeca Film Festival and others programmed the company.
In the 1980s and early 1990s, Klaus began working with musical director and composer Stephen Gaboury. As she presented dances in New York City, around the United States, and in Europe, critics applauded. Dance Magazine called her work “wonderfully convoluted madcap pieces … operating on a dozen different levels at once.” The New York Times said, “Arms slither one moment and jab at the air the next … feet bouncing like popping corn,” while Mainzer Rhein-Zeitung raved, “Auch die Ballerina tanzt Rock’n’Roll!”
Premieres during this period included Klaus’s signature ballroom-dance suite for eight women, Return to Normalcy; the quintet Silver Thaw, about longing tempered by hope; and The Johnny Show, a blend of honky-tonk, circus, and comic revue—all still part of the company’s repertory.
In 1996, Klaus formed Ballets with a Twist and began working with costume designer Catherine Zehr. The company appeared at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Clark Theatre and other venues. Premieres included Seven Minute Musical, in which an aging beauty reports from the frontlines of memory, and a short musical film, Temple of Swing, in which a glamorous “she” and her charismatic mentor meet in a world of fast cars, packed night clubs, and mysterious fortune tellers.