The Shedd Institute introduces its first annual Young Persons Music Festival with the world premier dance adaptation of Mark Twain’s 1876 timeless classic, The Adventures of Tom SawyerM/i>. We commissioned Eugene Ballet artistic director Toni Pimble to create a brand new story book ballet out of Tom’s story and asked Dick Hyman, longtime Jazz Advisor of The Shedd’s annual Oregon Festival of American Music, to write the music. This May, with Shedd classical music director and conductor James Paul and The Shedd’s American Symphonia Chamber Orchestra in the pit, The Eugene Ballet Company will bring the best stories of Tom, Huck Finn, and Becky to life for the entire family! It’ll all be there —whitewashing the fence, Tom & Becky falling in love, Tom and Huck in the graveyard, and Tom, Becky and Injun Joe in the cave. Whatever Sam Clemens said, Tom Sawyer was and is not just for kids and to our mind it’s still a must-read for young and old alike. We hope you’ll enjoy our dance adaptation.
But that’s not all. We commissioned Dick to write the score for Tom Sawyer with instrumentation similar to Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring because we believed it would be a wonderful companion-piece to that Pulitzer Prize-winning work. So also on the program in May will be The Gathering, Toni Pimble’s all-new setting of the Appalachian Spring Suite, Copland’s 1945 chamber orchestra version of his 1944 original ballet score.