The Hong Kong Ballet’s Cinderella

Cinderella, Wu Fei-fei Photograph Conrad Dy-Liacco

Celebrate summer with the enchanting fairytale of Cinderella — and the Ugly Stepsisters!

Cinderella, Wu Fei-fei Photograph Conrad Dy-Liacco
Cinderella, Wu Fei-fei Photograph Conrad Dy-Liacco

Hong Kong – 25 June 2012

The glass slippers, the pumpkin coach and the clock striking midnight – everyone knows the iconic motifs of this enchanting fairytale ballet. Watch Cinderella’s dreams come true as she is whisked from the daily grind of drudgery to a life of happily-ever-after with the help of a magical makeover from her Fairy Godmother. The Hong Kong Ballet will open the new dance season with Cinderella, a fairytale ballet for the whole family this summer. Choreographed by David Allan to a dramatic and melodious score by Sergei Prokofiev, with magnificent sets and costumes designed by Peter Cazalet, Cinderella will be performed at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre’s Grand Theatre from 31 August to 2 September 2012.

This much-loved story captures the romance of Cinderella and the Prince, the magic of the glass slipper, the hilarious antics of the Ugly Sisters and the glittering elegance of the Royal Ball. With a swish of her magic wand, the Fairy Godmother turns a pumpkin into a sparkling coach, and mice into horses. As well as the magic of Cinderella’s transformation, watch out for the ugly stepsisters’ hilarious slapstick antics that provide more than enough wit and humour to get the whole family giggling.

Tickets are available at all URBTIX outlets and via URBTIX website from 29 June 2012. Suitable for children aged 3 and above. A range of fringe activities will be held to enhance the audience’s appreciation for this delightful ballet, including a lecture demonstration on 21 August, a pre-performance talk on 31 August and a pre-performance workshop especially for children on 2 September. For details, please visit Hong Kong Ballet’s website.

 

David Allan – Choreographer

  • As an international choreographer, David Allan has choreographed more than 50 ballets. His critically acclaimed works are in the repertory of such prestigious companies as the New York City Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada and Italy’s Rome Opera Ballet.
  • He has also choreographed for opera, film, television and musicals. He is the recipient of the 1989 Jean A. Chalmers Choreographic Award (Canada) and the 1997 Choo-San Goh Award (U.S.A.).
  • David Allan is now a Professor and Director of Ballet at the University of California.

Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953) – Composer

  • 20th century Russian composer who wrote in a wide range of musical genres, including symphonies, concerti, film music, operas, ballets and programme pieces.
  • Prokofiev wrote music for ballet throughout his career from 1915 until his death in 1953. He had a special gift for ballet music, and is mentioned alongside such greats as Tchaikovsky, Ravel and Stravinsky.
  • His most popular works include: The Love for Three Oranges, Romeo & Juliet, Peter and the Wolf and Cinderella.
  • Cinderella has dark overtones despite the fact that it is a charming, lyrical ballet. Prokofiev wrote that he saw Cinderella, “not only as a fairy-tale character, but also as a real person – feeling, experiencing, and moving among us.”

 

Cinderella

 

31.8 – 2.9.2012
1-2.9.2012
7:30PM
2:30PM

$1000(VIP), $600, $400, $260, $140
Grand Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Tickets available at URBTIX from 29 June 2012
Ticketing Enquiries 2734 9009
Credit Card Booking 2111 5999
Programme Enquiries 2105 9724

 

Choreography
Music
Set & Costume Design
Lighting Design

David Allan
Sergei Prokofiev
Peter Cazalet
Leo Cheung

PROGRAMME PLUS!

Get to know Cinderella!

Find out more about the endearing classical ballet, Cinderella. Artistic Director Madeleine Onne will introduce the ballet, explore the classic ballet technique of mime, and also give a short presentation of the costumes. The talk will be accompanied by a short excerpt of the ballet, performed by the Company’s dancers.

Date: 21. 8. 2012 (Tuesday)
Time: 7:30pm-8:45pm
Venue: Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Conducted in English. Free admission. Limited audience capacity, advanced registration required.

Registration & Enquiries 2105 9724 / marketing@hkballet.com

Pre-performance Talk

Date: 31. 8. 2012 (Friday)
Time: 6:50pm
Venue: Level 2 Foyer, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

The programme is about 20 minutes long. Free admission with Cinderella tickets. Conducted in English with Cantonese translation.

Pre-performance Workshop

Designed for kids 4 to 8 years old, this fun workshop will teach children more about the ballet through storytelling, costume display, basic dance steps and handicrafts. No dance experience is necessary.

Date: 2. 9. 2012 (Sunday)
Time: 12:00noon
Venue: GR2, 8/F, Grand Theatre Backstage, Hong Kong Cultural Centre
Fee: $70 (PER PERSON)
Quota: 40

Only for Cinderella ticket holders. Advanced registration required.

Registration & Enquiries 2105 9743 / 2105 9744 / education@hkballet.com

About The Hong Kong Ballet


One of the premier classical ballet companies in Asia, The Hong Kong Ballet turned 33 in 2012. It is becoming internationally recognised as a world-class institution with an identity that fully reflects the unique vitality of Hong Kong.

The Company’s artistic team of over 40 dancers is led by Artistic Director Madeleine Onne. The majority of The Hong Kong Ballet’s dancers hail from China while others are from elsewhere in Asia, Europe and North America. The Company performs a repertoire that combines 19th to 21st century classical masterpieces, acclaimed contemporary works and newly commissioned ballets. Since 1997, The Hong Kong Ballet has raised its international profile by conducting over 20 tours. An integral part of the Company’s activities is an extensive education and community outreach programme, which brings the art of ballet to students as well as to the wider community of Hong Kong.

American Ballet Theatre – Programme Two, Sadlers Wells

American Ballet Theatre

Programme 2

Theme and Variations, Jardin Aux Lilas, Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux, Company B

Sadlers Wells

Tuesday 2nd February 2011

two dancers on stage
Jardin aux Lilas

In some ways Programme Two seemed, on paper at least, to offer the better selection of short ballets than Tuesday nights Programme One.  True, it has greater diversity, ranging from a tutu extravaganza through long dresses and a lot of restraint to Americana.  But the dancing let them down.  Programme One may have been very samey in content, but the dancers seemed more at ease with that style and were easier to watch.  There were exceptions though.

Theme and Variations needs to be well drilled & well rehearsed.  Patterns and formations should be clear, defined and sharp.  I didn’t see that.  I saw fudged lines, principal dancers Gillian Murphy and David Hallberg decidedly on edge with the choreography (though Murphy did a better job overall) and a messy corps who looked ruffled by windy fingers. I would love to see Hallberg dance this with Tamara Rojo; can you imagine their dual commas as the music swells, feet in perfectly arched unison ?  I think Hallberg would have an easier time of it in the lifts too, especially the shoulder sit at the end.

two dancers on stage in arabesque
Paloma Herrera and Marcelo Gomes in Theme and Variations. Photo Hidemi Seto

If the hits from the first Programme were the two ballets at either end – the (crustless) bread, if you like – then tonight’s winners were the peanut butter & jelly filling of the sandwich. The evening was saved by the two middle ballet’s – the utterly ravishing Jardin Aux Lilas and the crowd-pleasing Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux.  Both were blessed with great dancers and could have gone on forever.

Antony Tudor’s Jardin Aux Lilas, with its complex emotions and story that needs to be told, albeit with restraint, was perfection itself.  It’s all about timing and implication.  Julie Kent, as Caroline : faultless.  She is le dernier cri du chic – or drop dead elegant. Cory Stearns was much better suited to the role of Her Lover than last nights awkward Duo Concertant.  Kristi Boone, as An Episode in His Past was exquisite with buttery feet.  The whole ballet, from the sets to the lighting to the dancers themselves, coated the audience in a sublime mix of rapt attention and blissful delight.  Peter Cazalet’s compatible costumes and scenery designs provide just the right amount of emphasis.

dancer in high jump
ABT in Company B

Herman Cornejo & Xiomara Reyes shot from corner to corner in ever more astonishing feats of daring in the peachy & grey Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux, choreographed by George Balanchine.  Heaven on earth.  Reyes blazed a blistering trail; Cornejo lit the touch paper – where were the fire extinguishers ? Reyes’ turns were of such sheer force that they seemed to surprise even her ! Cornejo has sprezzatura in spades. This pair have a rare chemistry on stage and it makes them a joy to watch & they received the best audience reception of the night.

dancers in white tutus on stage
Scene from Theme and Variations Photograph : Gene Schiavone

And then there was Company B.  Why ?  Granted, Misty Copeland, slightly lawless in the Rum & Coca-Cola section with the boys slavering over her hypnotic hips should be run on a continuous loop, and Sascha Radetsky’s Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy to the title (Company B) was a delight, but the rest ?  Incarnadine baggy trousers on dancers ?  No.  Socks and plimsols ?  No, on both counts.  Fashions may be heading towards pebble, sand & ochre hues but they don’t sing from the stage.  They had it easy with The Andrews Sisters songs; dancers usually have no words to play with & must tell the story themselves, but why bring a non-ballet piece about 1940’s America to a London audience in 2011 ?  I’m sure it works at home, but I’d wager that fewer ballets danced with greater accuracy could have worked better for their dancers; and if it works for them, it’s surely going to work for the audience.