The New York City Ballet opened its Fall Season with a bill of three Balanchine ballets which premiered in a relative cluster: “Divertimento No. 15” (1956), “Scotch Symphony” (1952) and “La Sonnambula” (1960). The first and last of these were reworkings. “Divert” was an update of “Caracole,” a ballet made in 1952 to the same Mozart score, which Balanchine and the dancers had simply forgotten when they tried to revive it four years later. “La Sonnambula,” titled “Night Shadow” until 1961, was originally created for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo in 1946. When taking the first drafts into consideration, the famous ballerina Maria Tallchief becomes the evening’s through-line.
Unity Phelan and Harrison Ball in “La Sonnambula” by George Balanchine. Photograph by Erin Baiano