Locally written ballet to make world premiere at Five Points

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A new ballet featuring a score and choreography written by local artists will be performed this weekend in the Caterpillar Theatre at Five Points in Washington.

"The Changeless Mover" will make its world premiere at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Oct. 11 and 12 by The Peoria Ballet. Tickets are $24 at the door, online at www.PeoriaBallet.com or by calling (309) 690-7990.

The ballet, written in five movements, depicts a tumultuous encounter between theologian and philosopher Thomas Aquinas and Faith, Reason and Motion, according to a news release from the Peoria Ballet.

The original score of what is being billed an "analog electronic and electro-acoustic ballet" was written by local musician James Marck. It was synthesized by the Suit & Tie Guy.

The role of Thomas Aquinas is being danced by Servy Gallardo, artistic director at the Peoria Ballet, in his first public lead dance performance in years. Gallardo, who has received international acclaim as a dancer and choreographer, is the original choreographer for "The Changeless Mover."

"We are thrilled to be bringing this exciting new ballet to the stage", said Melody Reynolds, Peoria Ballet's executive director. "Collaborating with local artists in the creation of this new ballet is a perfect fit to our mission of providing art that moves."

Marck, who earned his bachelor's degree in music composition from Bradley University in 2010, is director of music at Sacred Heart and St. Joseph's Catholic Churches in Peoria. He also is staff composer and bass for Acaharmodies, a multi-genre a capella group, and vice president of Dramatic Crossroads, a central Illinois-based operae company.

"The Changeless Mover" is his first dramatic composition.

Servy Gallardo, a native of Venezuela and a member of that country's National Ballet,received his training under the tutelage of his mother, Glenda Lucena, now a guest teacher for the Royal Ballet School, and his father at the Ballet Opera of Maracay, the conservatory of music of the state of Aragua, Venezuela.

Gallardo has danced as a principal dancer with many ballet companies including Cleveland San Jose, Sacramento Ballet, North Carolina Dance Theatre, and Chautauqua Ballet. Gallardo has taught dance at the North Carolina Dance Theatre, at Davidson College in Charlotte, N.C. and the Piedmont Dance Conservatory.

The Peoria Ballet's chief performance each year, "The Nutcracker," will be performed at the Peoria Civic Center Theatre on Dec. 14 and 15.

The Ballet's Spring Show will be "Cinderella," scheduled for April 11 and 12 at Five Points in Washington.