This is a past event.

Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo 

When: Fri., May 28, 7 p.m., Sat., May 29, 8 p.m. and Sun., May 30, 2 p.m. 2010
Price: $15 - $75

The troupe's dancers – “ballerinas” with names like Svetlana Lofatkina and Ida Nevasayneva in size 10 pointe shoes – are superb, with a level of technique that would top that of many of their female counterparts. By enhancing rather than mocking the spirit of dance, “the Trocks” – as they are known to their fans around the world – delight and amuse the most knowledgeable dance enthusiasts, as well as novices. Sponsored by BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and presented by Spoleto Festival USA. Approximately two hours.

Dudes in tutus and toe shoes.
You've never seen classical ballet quite like this. And you've probably never seen grown men looking quite like this either. Les Trockaderos are a European classical ballet troupe composed solely of men dressed as ballerinas, who prance around the stage with all the grace they can muster. The troupe started out in the '70s playing late-night shows in Off-Off-Broadway lofts and quickly gained positive reviews in The New York Times and the Village Voice. Since then, they've gained worldwide acclaim. "The gags work every time because they are rooted in a love affair with ballet," The Guardian (UK) said. "This is the funniest night you'll ever have at the ballet, but, weirdly, also one of the most poignant."

They're seriously funny
Sure, the idea of seeing guys prancing around in toe shoes might make you giggle. And The Trocks are fully aware of the camp value of their unique show. But there's a serious side to these dancers too — they're not just stumbling around for a laugh. They know their chassé from their ballon, and they're not afraid to use them. It's OK to laugh ... but try to make it appreciative laughter at least. You might just forget they're dudes after awhile. (Especially if you're sitting in the balcony at the Gaillard.)

There's a local connection
One of the company's leading ballerinos is Robert Carter. No, not Peninsula Grill's beloved chef. This Carter grew up in the Lowcountry, beginning his dance career at Robert Ivey's school. He danced with Florence Civic Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem Ensemble, and Bay Ballet Theater before joining the troupe in 1995. Now he's one of the company's star dancers. Just look for the black guy in the platinum wig. And don't miss the Conversations with Carter and Trocks Artistic Director Tory Durbin at the Gaillard on May 30 at 4 p.m.

— Erica Jackson



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