“Creating Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
[Centennial, CO] – Fathom Events and the Royal Opera House are partnering again to present the “The 2014/15 Royal Ballet Cinema Season.” Fathom will offer five specially curated titles from October through May, four of which will be captured live from London and include: “Manon” on Thursday, Oct. 16; “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” on Tuesday, Dec. 16; “Swan Lake” on Thursday, March 19; and “La Fille Mal Gardee” on Tuesday, May 5. Rounding out the season is the beloved Christopher Wheeldon’s “The Winter’s Tale” on Tuesday, Feb. 17, which was recorded earlier in the season. Each event in the series will also feature 15 minutes of behind-the-scenes footage including interviews with the performers and specially captured rehearsal elements.
Tickets for the “The 2014/15 Royal Ballet Cinema Season” are available at participating theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com. The event will be presented in more than 360 select movie theaters around the country through Fathom’s Digital Broadcast Network. For a complete list of theater locations and prices, visit the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).
“We are delighted to be extending our partnership with Fathom Events into a second full season,” Alastair Roberts, MD (Managing Director) of Royal Opera House Enterprises said. “Last Season saw world-class performances from The Royal Ballet relayed into hundreds of cinemas across the USA and we are excited about building on this success. 2014-15 is an important Season for the Company: as well as relaying live performances into cinemas, The Royal Ballet is coming to the USA on tour to give live performances in Chicago, Washington and New York next summer. Extending our partnership with Fathom Events is the ideal way to mark the start of this important Season for us.”
“Bringing Great Britain’s most prestigious ballet company back to cinemas across the U.S. is an exciting opportunity for fans of all ages,” said Fathom Events Senior Vice President Dan Diamond. “The audiences from our first season wanted to experience more of these magical performances in cinemas and we are thrilled to partner again with the Royal Opera House to meet their demand.”
“Manon” – Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014 at 7 p.m. local time
Manon Lescaut is a beautiful young woman who falls prey to the moral corruption of 18th century Paris. Kenneth MacMillan brings Manon’s story vividly to life, with his ballet, which evokes the brutality and decadence described in Abbé Prévost’s infamous novel, as well as the feckless character of Manon herself – torn between love for the poet Des Grieux and her desire for money and attention. The cast of complex characters includes the callous Monsieur GM, the swaggering Jailer, Manon’s roguish brother Lescaut and his coquettish Mistress, but at the ballet’s heart are the duets MacMillan created for Manon and Des Grieux, which are among the most emotionally intense and erotically charged ever choreographed.
“Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” – Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014 at 7 p.m. local time
Christopher Wheeldon’s full-length ballet based on Lewis Carroll’s book is an exuberant piece of storytelling featuring an instantly recognizable cast of characters, among them a tap-dancing Mad Hatter, a tetchy White Rabbit and a raucously bad-tempered Queen of Hearts. Wheeldon, along with composer Joby Talbot and designer Bob Crowley, have created a genuine family ballet in the spirit of Carroll’s beloved children’s classic. While regular ballet goers can appreciate nods to other famous works – there’s a parody of the Rose Adagio from “The Sleeping Beauty,” with jam tarts instead of flowers – the ballet is above all a brilliant realization of Carroll’s zany dream-world featuring stunning choreography, a colorful score and ingenious stage magic.
“The Winter’s Tale” (Pre-recorded) – Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015 at 7 p.m. local time
Following his delightful full-length ballet “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” Christopher Wheeldon continues his highly successful collaboration with designer Bob Crowley and composer Joby Talbot to create his first ballet based on a Shakespeare play, the late romance “The Winter’s Tale.” The story follows the destruction of marriage through consuming jealousy, the abandonment of a child, and a seemingly hopeless love. Yet through remorse and regret – and after a statue comes miraculously to life – the story is one of forgiveness and reconciliation. It is powerful material for ballet, with a narrative that allows for the portrayal of intense emotions between and within the characters, and the opportunity for the Company to create not just new central characters but the whole world around them.
“Swan Lake” – Thursday, March 19, 2015 at 7 p.m. local time
Swan Lake, surely the greatest of all Romantic ballets, is the captivating story of a beautiful woman transformed into a swan, and a heart-rending tribute to the power of love. Swan Lake is a perfect synthesis of choreography and music and, though Tchaikovsky did not live to see it become a success, his first ballet score is now synonymous with ballet itself, inspiring generations of dancers and crossing over into popular culture. From The Royal Ballet’s earliest days, “Swan Lake” has been one of the company’s signature works. In creating this production, Anthony Dowell aimed to return to an authentic version of the choreography created by the great Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov for St. Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre in 1895. Yolanda Sonnabend’s designs draw on the Russian Imperial Court of that period with an inspired blend of historical accuracy and gothic fantasy. The court scenes of Acts I and III have a dark glamor rooted in the opulent style of Carl Fabergé, while the famous lakeside ‘white’ acts are rich with mist, shadow and moonlight.
“La Fille Mal Gardee”– Tuesday, May 5, 2015 at 7 p.m. local time
Frederick Ashton’s final full-length ballet is one of his most joyous creations, inspired by his love for the Suffolk countryside. It is based on an 1828 French ballet and the music was adapted by John Lanchbery from Ferdinand Hérold’s original score. “La Fille mal gardée” was a resounding success on its premiere in 1960 and has remained a firm favorite in The Royal Ballet’s repertory. The ballet, whose title translates as “The Wayward Daughter,” displays some of Ashton’s most virtuosic choreography – the youthful passion of Lise and her lover, Colas, is expressed in a series of energetic pas de deux. The ballet is laced with good humor and a whirl of dancing chickens, grouchy guardians and halfwit suitors take to the stage. Ashton affectionately incorporated elements of national folk dance into his choreography, from a Lancashire clog dance to a maypole dance, making “La Fille mal gardée” (despite its title) The Royal Ballet’s most emphatically English work. Osbert Lancaster’s colorful designs reinforce the robust wit of the production.
For more information about Royal Opera House and the ballet series, please visit www.roh.org.uk.