Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times
"The Bright Steam," introduced in 1935 in Stalin's Russia, quickly fell under a dark cloud and vanished from the stage. But there was life left in this playful tale of a farm collective sent into a tizzy by visiting big-city artists. Shostakovich's score endured and Alexei Ratmansky envisioned the ballet anew for the Bolshoi Ballet in 2003. Now American Ballet Theatre, on a visit to L.A., is performing the piece at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. At Thursday's opening, Jared Matthews portrayed the Tractor Driver.