DENVER (CBS4) – The Colorado Ballet will take you to 17th century Spain with their performance of the classic Don Quixote. The show will take you along as Don Quixote and Sancho Panza lead you on an adventure of romance and humor as they come across a band of gypsies, dream of dryads all ending with a surprising turn of events.

CBS4 sat in on rehearsal ahead of opening night. It’s a show two principal dancers for the company say will keep you intrigued.

Francisco Estevez stars in Colorado Ballet's Don Quixote

Francisco Estevez (credit: CBS)

“It’s just a very comical ballet and you just tick all the boxes,” principal dancer Francisco Estevez, who performs the role of Basilio say. “You have romance, you have drama, you have the classical stuff,” said Francisco “and you get to enjoy that all in one family friendly production.”

(credit: CBS)

Principal dancer Asuka Sasaki, who plays the role of Kitri, says this role is a dream come true and has been in love with the story since she was a kid.

Asuka Sasaki stars in Colorado Ballet's Don Quixote

Asuka Sasaki (credit: CBS)

“It really fits my character because my personality is more energy and jumping,” Asuka explained.

(credit: CBS)

The dancers will take you through the classic tale.

“Don Quixote is dreaming about a girl that looks like Kirti and he falls in love with her,” Asuka said about the story,“it’s like a lot of story in one ballet because Don Quixote fall(s) in love with her but she also falls in love with Basilio and then has (a) relationship with him. This is really happy ballet and nothing sad about it.”

(credit: CBS)

Francisco says his character connects to his Spanish heritage.

Francisco Estevez stars in Colorado Ballet's Don Quixote

Francisco Estevez stars in Don Quixote (credit: Colorado Ballet)

“The character is based on a Spanish tale, I have Spanish heritage, I’m from Ecuador so there’s a natural connection there.” Francisco said. “The character is very passionate, very fiery character and I really like to put that into my dancing.”

Asuka Sasaki stars in Colorado Ballet's Don Quixote

(credit: Colorado Ballet)

For both Francisco and Asuka, their roles come with challenges. “It’s a very athletic ballet so I think just stamina wise I think that will be the most challenging thing for sure” Francisco explained. Asuka agreed “this is a long ballet actually so I try to organize my energy.”

They hope their hard work will show on stage.

“This is special for me so I hope audience get to see how excited I am” said Asuka.
“I hope that I can transmit something real to them so they actually feel something that is genuine. I hope that I can connect to them in some way even if it’s just a funny way,” said Francisco “I just hope that they leave the auditorium feeling happy about what they’ve seen.”

(credit: CBS)

Colorado Ballet’s “Don Quixote” at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House opens Oct. 4 and runs through the 13th. Get tickets at coloradoballet.org.

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