Stealing Time, a new work by Michael Chernov with music by Kurt Weill, is a ballet about illusions, the elusiveness of images, dreams, nightmares and the ultimate redemptive power of love.
This new work focuses on Algae, an outsider, who is always chasing after elusive success — ambition power sex and other wonderful temptations. Algae’s world is thrown into chaos when he kills a mysterious being in a nightclub. His journey and downfall through the struggle with his conscience and society’s insiders culminates in finding mercy through the love of his wife Venus.
His and the audiences eyes, both inner and outer, play a large part in this ballet. People watching each other, the conscience watching us and the sinister dark forces watching us. Multi-media projections will illustrate the delusion so easily fed to us by society.
Chernov is drawn to Kurt Weill’s music, which is rarely used in classical ballet, and is thrilled to be creating a new work it. Also, as a source of inspiration, Chernov was inspired by Belgium artist Renée Magritte’s contribution to art for his treatment of the topic of the illusion of images — what our eyes see and think they see.
Kurt Weill’s music can be grouped into approximately three periods: His classical period up until he met Brecht. His work with Brecht and finally, his work on musicals in the United States. Chernov draws on music from all three periods for this ballet. The music is so vastly different in style yet retaining the Weill and 1920s charm. Chernov uses it to portray illusions and realities that this music suggests from different periods in Weill’s artistic life.
The work will be performed by Gelsey Kirkland Ballet, March 17-20 at the GK ArtsCenter in DUMBO Brooklyn.