The Frog Prince – A Ballet Chinois
The classical fairytale is transported to the Qing dynasty
A brand new production by The Hong Kong Ballet and Yuri Ng
<Hong Kong – 19 February 2013> What happens when you combine the intrigue of the Qing Court with a traditional fairytale by the Brothers Grimm? Commissioned by The Hong Kong Ballet, renowned Hong Kong choreographer Yuri Ng and dancers from The Hong Kong Ballet Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu have created The Frog Prince – A Ballet Chinois – a chinoiserie art piece enlived by humour and splashes of colour. The ballet, set to Maurice Ravel’s richly textured music, recounts the time-honoured story of the frog prince, but relocates it in time and space to play out alongside the demise of nearly two millennia of imperial rule in China. Experience this fantastical ballet at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre’s Studio Theatre from 19th – 21st April 2013 (5 performances).
Discussing his inspiration, Yuri Ng said, “The idea for The Frog Prince was born out of my fascination with the interplay and parallels between the Occidental and the Oriental. Reading The Frog Prince, I was struck by how colourful it was, and it reminded me of the kaleidoscopic, mesmerizing world of the Qing. I wanted to recast a Western fairytale in an Eastern setting, performed in a Western artform, so that it would be like a hall of mirrors, all reflecting the other so that you cannot be sure where the true original lies.”
Hong Kong-born artist Wilson Shieh collaborated with The Hong Kong Ballet for the first time to create charming images of the ballet, bringing the characters and their intertwining relationships to life in his unique style.
Box office opens 19th February 2013. Tickets are available at all URBTIX outlets and via the URBTIX website. Suitable for adults and children (ages 6 and up) alike. For programme details, please visit Hong Kong Ballet’s website.
The Story of The Frog Prince – A Ballet Chinois
A little green frog looks on as the besotted Emperor gives his favourite consort, Princess Moon, a golden ball to symbolise their true love. As the Qing Dynasty begins to crumble, the Court takes flight; in the chaos of escape Princess Moon, accompanied by the frog, finds herself falling into the dark depths of a well in pursuit of the golden ball. Fantasy and reality blur together until finally she reaches out to grab the golden ball… but the world comes tumbling down and only a kiss can save her.
Choreographer: Yuri Ng
Hong Kong-born Yuri Ng began his career as a choreographer after dancing for several years in Canada and Asia. He has choreographed a number of ballets for The Hong Kong Ballet, including Ballet Classics for Children: Cinderella, Ballet Classics for Children: Swan Lake, Firecracker, Yeah Yeah Xi Men Qing and Butterfly Lovers. His other works include designing costumes for the ballet Jardin aux Lilas and collaborating with Hong Kong Sinfonietta for Know Your Ballet Music. Ng recently won the 2012 Hong Kong Dance Alliance Distinguished Achievement Award. He is currently Artist Associate of Hong Kong Sinfonietta.
Associate Choreographer: Yuh Egami
Born in Japan, Egami graduated from The Royal Ballet School in London. He joined The Hong Kong Ballet in 2002 and has created several works including Kagé, Sakula, Collage of One, Mirage and OIOIO. As Associate Choreographer, he created the full-length ballet Firecracker with Yuri Ng in 2010. In 2012, Yuh and Ricky Hu collaborated to create a complex and stylish piece, White Lies, which was presented at The Hong Kong Ballet’s Emerging Choreographers series.
Associate Choreographer: Ricky Hu
Born in Jiangxi, Ricky Hu graduated from the Shanghai Dance School (Major in Chinese Dance) in 2004 before going on to train at the LASALLE-SIA College of the Arts in Singapore. He received a full scholarship to study at The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and later an Asian Cultural Council Dance Fellowship to further his study at the Ailey School in New York. Since joining The Hong Kong Ballet in 2008, he has created works including Twins, Voicing and Play with Abandon (featured in the 2012 Hong Kong Arts Festival). His collaboration with Yuh Egami, White Lies, was featured in The Hong Kong Ballet’s Emerging Choreographers series in 2012.
Illustrations: Wilson Shieh
Wilson Shieh, a painter trained in the Chinese fine-brush (gongbi) technique, works on various media ranging from Chinese ink drawings on silk, to acrylic on canvas, to paper cutout collage. He focuses on human bodies as a theme for his narration. Transforming figures by means of tailor-made costumes, the identity of modern people is always challenged in his artistic works. Shieh has made a name for himself by using traditional illustrative methods to comment on social issues.
The Frog Prince – A Ballet Chinois
19-21. 4. 2013 8:00PM
20-21. 4. 2013 3:00PM
Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre
$500 (VIP), $350, $250
Tickets are now available at URBTIX
Ticketing enquiries 2734 9009
Credit card booking 2111 5999
Programme enquiries 2105 9724
Associate Choreographers：Yuh Egami, Ricky Hu
Costume Designer：Bridget Steis
Set Designer：Leocampo Yuen
Lighting Designer：Albert Wong
Sound Designer：Kester Lee
For ages 6 and above
Date: 19. 4. 2013 (Friday)
Time: After the performance
Venue: Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre
Grab a lily pad and settle down after the show to chat with Artistic Director Madeleine Onne, choreographer Yuri Ng and the creative team. They will give you some fascinating insights about the inspiration and creative process for The Frog Prince. The panel will also be taking questions from the audience.
Primarily conducted in English, with key points interpreted into Cantonese.
Open to The Frog Prince – A Ballet Chinois ticket holders only.
About The Hong Kong Ballet
One of the premier classical ballet companies in Asia, The Hong Kong Ballet is becoming internationally recognised as a world-class institution with an identity that fully reflects the unique vitality of Hong Kong. The Company turns 34 in 2013, and over time has evolved into a vibrant performing arts organisation with accomplished dancers, a strong repertoire, and sparkling, technically challenging productions.
The Company’s artistic team is led by Artistic Director Madeleine Onne, with over 40 dancers originating from all over the world. The Company performs a repertoire that combines classical masterpieces and acclaimed contemporary works from the 19th to 21st centuries, as well as new commissions. Since 1997, The Hong Kong Ballet has raised its international profile by conducting over 30 tours; in the summer of 2012, The Hong Kong Ballet toured the United States and Canada, performing at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and in Aspen, Montreal and Santa Fe. 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.