Sexy Beast

As weird as the juxtaposition of Beauty and the Beast and nightclubs may seem, Ballet Nouveau artistic director Robert Mills found a way to meld two of his own personal obsessions into a bold ballet remake of the timeless love story.

In Mills's version, the Beast lives in the sewers beneath the New York subway, while the object of his affections works several jobs aboveground to pay the rent on her father's tiny urban apartment. They hook up, he takes her down to his subterranean lair and, just as in the story of old, she leaves to help her ailing father, sending the lonely Beast off to dance away his sorrows in the protective shadows of a punk-gothic disco.

"It's the only place where he feels comfortable around others," says Ballet Nouveau spokeswoman Talia Davis. Which, of course, gives Mills the opportunity to dress ballerinas in fishnets and safety pins and set them spinning to techno beats across an edgy, minimal set. What a great place to romance your own modern lover!

To that end, Ballet Nouveau offers a special Valentine's Day performance of the modernized fairy tale tonight at 8 p.m. at the Paramount Theatre, 1621 Glenarm Place; for tickets, $38 to $55, call 303-466-5685 or visit
Wed., Feb. 14, 8 p.m.


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