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The Globe and Mail

World premiere of Arrabal features all-star creative team

<137>Photo by Francisco Scavino ARRABAL, an exciting World Premiere, is an explosive story told entirely through dance and the music of multiple Academy Award® winner Gustavo Santaolalla (Brokeback Mountain, Babel) and his band Bajofondo. Using a modern tango dance vocabulary never seen before, director Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys, Memphis) and choreographer Julio Zurita create a dramatic vision that is emotional, sexual and powerful. With a book written by Tony Award® nominee John Weidman (Contact), follow Arrabal, our heroine, in this coming of age story as she enters the underground world of Buenos Aires’ tango clubs and discovers the violent history that took her father and disrupted a nation. ARRABAL is based on the true story of the political violence that threatened to destroy Argentina in the 1970’s. With a live band and performers direct from Buenos Aires, experience the sensual beauty and political intrigue that is ARRABAL.<137><137><252><137>

photo by Cylla von Tiedemann

If the all-star creative team behind it is any indication, the world premiere of Arrabal, the new all-dance musical opening at Toronto's Panasonic Theatre on Thursday and running through to April 20 should be nothing short of spectacular.

The co-choreographer/director is Colombian-born, Toronto-raised Sergio Trujillo, whose big break came as choreographer for the monster hit Jersey Boys in 2005. The composer, Argentina's Gustavo Santaolalla, has two Oscars (for Brokeback Mountain and Babel) and 16 Grammy Awards to his credit. Santaolalla and his band Bajofondo are credited with creating the unique nuevo sound, a fusion of tango, folk, rock, hip hop, electronica, jazz and classical.

Arrabal is a coming-of-age love story set against the backdrop of Argentina's Dirty War (1976-1983), when thousands of left-leaning dissidents were arrested and then disappeared. The set is a dilapidated milonga or tango bar with some audience members sitting at tables on the stage.

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The dance is, the choreographers say, tango reinvented.

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