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The Boston Globe

Arts

DANCE REVIEW

‘Classical Lovers’ show their hearts

CAMBRIDGE - Flirtation and commitment, betrayal and forgiveness. . . . In honor of February’s Valentine’s Day spirit, José Mateo Ballet Theatre’s “Classical Lovers’’ brings together three of Mateo’s choreographic explorations of the emotional vicissitudes of love. Happily, the concert sends you away with a skip in your step and a renewed appreciation of romance.

“Courtly Lovers’’ (2003) is one of Mateo’s most traditionally classical works. It beautifully plays off the pristine transparency and formalism of Haydn’s Symphony No. 94 (“Surprise’’). The gorgeous opening tableau shows a line of women connected by arms raised in V-shapes, tracing a zigzag across an angled, cloud-dappled backdrop. As the work unfolds, Mateo moves the full company through sharp lines and diagonals into vivid geometric patterns that effectively reflect Haydn’s polished structural clarity.

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