The Myth and the Madness of Edgar Allan Poe is an original ballet written and choreographed by Christopher Fleming. The ballet is an abstract retelling of Poe's life and descent into insanity. It was originally a commissioned work for the Dayton Ballet of Ohio. The Myth and the Madness of Edgar Allan Poe was last performed at Gloucester County College in Sewell, NJ on October 25 - 27, 2012.
A Review of "The Myth and the Madness of Edgar Allan Poe" from the March 2012 performance at the Mandell Theatre at Drexel:
Karen Harlin March 11th, 2012 8:31 am :
"Tonight I saw the best dance performance I’ve ever seen.
What drew me to go see the performance was a misconception and assumption on my part that was wrong. There was no interspersing of poetry with dance. There was no need. The “poetry” was in the dance. Simultaneously visually loud and silently beautiful but for the music. The performance of “The Myth and the Madness of Edgar Allan Poe” by BalletFleming at the Mandell Theatre at Drexel University was introduced by “The Spirit of Poe” who said, “These words are for those who feel rather than think.” …And that was evident from the white cloth that evoked “spirits in the graveyard” to the choreography that repeatedly depicted the rejection, isolation and separation of Poe from his loved ones. The sad story of his life played out depicting the tragic losses of his mother, his father, his surrogate father, his lover, and his wife. These losses ultimately led him to descend into madness but oh the wonderful poetic images as the choreography showed us his pain.
The star of this production is truly the choreographer Christopher Fleming. In scene after scene, his ensemble numbers, duets or trios evoke emotion. Of special note is the delightfully evil Black Raven perfectly portrayed by Holly Curran. Also, Poe’s wife, danced by Adrianna de Svastich, showed her exquisite artistry. The musical score by David Goldstein MD is appropriately hauntingly beautiful and laced with anguish.
Choreographer Christopher Fleming, a former New York City Ballet member, upon encouragement by George Balanchine, began his career as a choreographer. In 2010 he formed BalletFleming here in Philadelphia.
Tonight’s choreography and the perfectly executed performances by this new and exciting company means supporters should be lining up for the privilege of donating money to BalletFleming to create more new original works of art. If you don’t have BalletFleming on your radar please adjust your priorities." - Karen Harlin