Resurgence Dance Company members in costume for “The Night Court,” which will be performed this weekend at the Chocolate Church Arts Center annex in Bath. Contributed / Sararose Willey

Since “A Court of Thorns and Roses” first hit bookshelves in 2015, the fantasy series has earned best-seller status and a TV deal from Hulu. But before the love story reaches the small screen, Mainers can watch a new contemporary ballet adaptation, courtesy of Resurgence Dance Company.

“The Night Court,” based on the second book in Sarah J. Maas’ popular young adult series, will debut Friday at 7:30 p.m. at the Chocolate Church Arts Center annex in Bath. The two-hour “mixed media performance,” which blends several dance influences with acting and voiceover effects, will also run Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Christina Longstreeth, right, stars as Feyre, a woman banished to the faerie world of Prythian. Shelly Daniels plays Ianthe. Contributed / Sararose Willey

“If ballet, jazz and modern dance had a baby, you’d have contemporary ballet,” said choreographer Ashley Steeves, 34, who founded Resurgence Dance Company in Bath about eight years ago. “We like to have fun and throw in a lot of new stuff.”

The company, performing in person for the first time since the pandemic shuttered live events two years ago, gives both new and experienced Maine dancers a chance to practice the art as adults, said Steeves, who trained in a pre-professional program at The Ballet School in Topsham as a teenager.

“We have dancers who have been in professional companies, and then we have dancers who are newer, and we’ll apprentice them,” Steeves said. “It’s a pretty big mix.”

Steeves’ longtime friend Alexis Demers, 30, is making her debut as co-director after writing the show’s book.


“I fell in love with this story right around April when everyone was in the middle of COVID and we were all finding other things to do,” Demers said.

“A Court of Thorns and Roses” tells the story of Feyre, a mortal woman who travels to the dangerous faerie world of Prythian. “The Night Court” will depict her romance with Ryhsand, a powerful faerie lord.

It was Demers’ passion for the book’s characters that kept her motivated during the difficult process of adapting a novel for the stage, she said.

Fans of the book series, including some far from the Midcoast, have been eagerly awaiting the show, which stars Christina Longstreeth and Garret Coffey as lovers Feyre and Ryhsand.

“We have people waiting for the livestream from New Zealand and Germany and Australia,” Demers said. “They’re all super excited about this show.”

The ballet’s use of dialogue and voiceover will make the story accessible to new viewers as well, she said.


“You don’t have to have read the books to understand what’s going on,” she said. “It’s easy to follow the stories start to finish.”

Tickets to “The Night Court,” available on the Chocolate Church’s website, cost $18 in advance or $20 the day of the show. Interested viewers will also be able to buy tickets to a livestream on either Friday or Saturday night, and Resurgence Dance Company will release a recording of the performance in a few months, Steeves said.

Capacity will be limited to 60 masked guests who must show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test upon entry, said Donna Pierson, program director at the Chocolate Church.

Pierson, noting the scarcity of opportunities to see dance in Maine, said those on the fence wouldn’t regret the decision to watch the local group perform.

“Talking to some of our best customers for concerts who have ventured into Resurgence Dance Company, the feedback has been remarkably good,” she said. “It’s completely worth it all the way around.”

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