The Joffrey Ballet recently opened its 2019-2020 season with a strong Chicago premiere of "Jane Eyre."
The troupe's "Jane Eyre" runs through Oct. 27 at The Auditorium Theatre. This production is an adaptation by Cathy Marston, of the book "Jane Eyre," by Charlotte Bronte. The Joffrey's production features live accompaniment by the Chicago Philharmonic.
This story ballet, which tells the tale of an orphan named Jane Eyre, her unfair, hard life, her time as a teacher and then governess for Edward Rochester as well as her struggles after falling in love with Rochester and all the difficulty that entails. The audience sees Jane's life go from girlhood to womanhood on stage.
Starring as Jane is Amanda Assucena with Greig Matthews in the role of Rochester. Assucena and Matthews portray their characters with great passion, magnetic dancing and skilled acting.
The troupe's dancing, overall in this piece, is superb. The individual characters do a fine job interacting with one another while the group of male dancers termed the D-Men in this piece perform dynamic choreography that keeps the audience engaged everytime they're on stage.
Besides the lead characters of Jane and Rochester, other dancing roles in the spotlight are Yumi Kanazawa as Young Jane; Edson Barbosa as St. John Rivers; Gayeon Jung and Olivia Tang-Mifsud as Diana and Mary Rivers; Christine Rocas in the roles of Bessie the maid and Bertha Mason; April Daly as Mrs. Reed; Brooke Linford as Helen Burns; Lucia Connolly as Mrs. Fairfax; Jeraldine Mendoza as Blanche Ingram; and others.
FYI: The Joffrey Ballet presents "Jane Eyre" through Oct. 27 at The Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Ida B. Wells Drive, Chicago. Tickets are $35 to $199. Call 312-386-8905 or visit joffrey.org. The next production on The Joffrey schedule is "The Nutcracker," running Nov. 30 to Dec. 29.