Dreams beget dreams. Schools expand horizons. Thirty years ago the Richmond Ballet came into being as a professional troupe; the company grew out of the School of the Richmond Ballet just as George Balanchine’s New York City Ballet grew out of the School of the American Ballet. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday the Richmond Ballet will dance programs to mark a double celebration.
The performances at CenterStage’s Carpenter Theatre will recognize the ballet’s official 30 th birthday; they also will commemorate the 100 th anniversary of the Parisian premiere of “The Rite of Spring.” Vaslav Nijinsky choreographed “Rite” for Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes to a score composed by Igor Stravinsky. The debut at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées ranks as the most famous — and infamous — night at the ballet. The steps and the music provoked bravos and boos. Fights reportedly occurred. Men in evening wear behaved as though they were in a boxing ring. The Richmond Ballet is paying tribute to a triumvirate — Nijinsky, Diaghilev and Stravinsky — that made dance history. The performing arts mattered then and should still.