the musicians of Moulin Rouge: violinist Charles Stegeman, cellist Elisa Kohanski, oboist Robin Driscol and accordionist Henry Doktorski
February 14-17, 2013: Henry Doktorski appeared onstage at the Benedum Center in five performances of the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's production of Moulin Rouge: The Ballet. He played accordion and also sang in French with a quartet of strolling street musicians: violin, oboe, cello and accordion in costume against a stunning set depicting gay Paris. The quartet performed two French numbers at the beginning of Act I: La Vie en Rose and Under Paris Skies. The quartet returned at the beginning of Act II for two tangos: Chittara Romana and Tango del Mare. The rest of the music for the ballet was recorded music.
Pittsburgh Ballet Theater Artistic Director Terrence S. Orr said, "The romance of Paris is in the air with [choreographer] Jorden Morris' Moulin Rouge: the Ballet, a work seen by well over 100,000 people in the U.S. and Canada since its premiere in 2009. . . Moulin Rouge: the Ballet draws us immediately into the early, intoxicating years of the most famous cabaret in the world and into a passionate story of love and heartbreak. . . The costumes seem to step right out of Toulouse-Lautrec's familiar paintings of the Moulin Rouge and you'll hear, from the opening curtain, that the score Jorden compiled is extraordinarily evocative of Paris and the era."
Music Critic Mark Kanny wrote, "Moulin Rouge begins with the intoxication of Edith Piaf's song La vie en rose. It was deliciously performed by violinist Charles Stegeman and accordionist Henry Doktorski, who also sang. They then joined oboist Robin Driscol and cellist Elisa Kohanski to provide the distinctive charm of live music for a few more minutes before recorded music took over."—"Strong cast dazzles amidst song and dance of Moulin Rouge," Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (February 15, 2013)
Doktorski said, "Moulin Rouge: the Ballet premiered with the Winnipeg Canada Royal Ballet with music by Quartetto Gelato. We had so much fun playing the French tunes and the tangos. I really don't like to sing in public (especially in a foreign language), but as it was required in the score, I obliged, with special thanks to Company Pianist Yoland Collin, who unofficially served as Music Director and my personal French tutor. I was quite surprised when several friends who attended the show told me that they really enjoyed my singing and asked if I speak French."
"Moulin Rouge begins with the intoxication of Edith Piaf's song La vie en rose. It was deliciously performed by violinist
Charles Stegeman and accordionist Henry Doktorski, who also sang."—Mark Kanny, Tribune Review (February 15, 2013)
backstage at the Benedum with the musicians of Moulin Rouge
Moulin Rouge: The Ballet