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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Joffrey Ballet: Anna Karenina

The Joffrey’s acclaimed production of Anna Karenina, which premiered in 2019 in Chicago, comes to the Kennedy Center. The choreography is by Yuri Possokhov, set to an original score by the young Russian composer Ilya Demutsky. Tolstoy’s Anna is an aristocratic wife who abandons home, honor, and her young son for a passionate affair with the dashing Vronsky. If ever a character in a novel (one hesitates to call her a “heroine”) was a ballerina, it is she. As Kitty says of her at the ball, when Anna dances with Vronsky, the man Kitty loves, “Fascinating was her firm neck with its thread of pearls, fascinating the straying curls of her loose hair, fascinating the graceful, light movements of her little feet and hands, fascinating was that lovely face in its eagerness, but there was something terrible and cruel in her fascination.” Ballerinas, not unlike Anna Karenina, are complex. —L.J.

John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts 2700 F St NW, Washington, DC 20566, United States
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