News Story

October 18, 2017

La Roche Performing Arts Students to Take the Byham Theater Stage

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 18, 2017 – The La Roche College Performing Arts Department will present “The Messiah” at the Byham Theater on Saturday, Nov. 18 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Choreographed by Performing Arts Department Chair Maria Caruso, the ballet will feature music by The Pittsburgh Festival Orchestra and Maestri Singers, under the direction of Thomas Octave.

Ms. Caruso, artistic director for Bodiography, adapted Handel’s “Messiah,” a work that was created in the absence of movement and dance, into a ballet. Ms. Caruso was driven by the challenge of accentuating one of the world’s most celebrated Baroque oratorios and bringing lovers of ballet and “Messiah” together to experience a non-narrative ballet that is focused on lighting the world through love.

This year, for the first time since its premiere in 2015, the ballet will be performed as a stand-alone, separating Ms. Caruso’s Bodiography company from the La Roche student dancers. The company will open for the students, as a way to applaud their development over the past two years, with a performance of Ms. Caruso’s acclaimed ballet “Lux Aeterna,” which inspired her vision for “The Messiah.”

Together “Lux Aeterna” and “The Messiah” seek to break through the glass ceiling that decouples heavenly music from a compelling visual aesthetic.

Tickets can be purchased online through the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust or by phone at 412-456-6666.

Modeled after the most elite collegiate dance programs in the country, La Roche’s performing arts program focuses on artistic and academic excellence. Under the instruction of Ms. Caruso, students become confident professionals and master numerous styles of dance. Students also receive full scholarships to take unlimited courses each year at Ms. Caruso’s renowned dance studio in Squirrel Hill.

About La Roche College: A private liberal arts college in the North Hills of Pittsburgh, La Roche College offers more than 50 undergraduate majors, six graduate degree programs and one doctoral program, with particular strengths in education, business, criminal justice, psychology, and health and medical sciences, as well as interior design and graphic design. This residential college provides a vibrant campus community for more than 1,500 men and women enjoying 30-plus student organizations and an exciting NCAA Div. III athletics program. Founded by the Sisters of Divine Providence in 1963, La Roche College embraces its Catholic heritage while welcoming people of all faiths and backgrounds. With a legacy of social justice and a commitment to international exchange, La Roche College educates students to be lifelong learners and achievers in an increasingly diverse and global society.