Dutch National Ballet presents
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Famous fairy tale in a magical setting
This season’s must-see, Cinderella whisks you away to a world of charm and laughter, entrancing dance and a dash of magic, bringing the classic fairy tale back to life for a new generation. A spectacular ballet performance the whole family will enjoy. Choreographer Christopher Wheeldon’s modern, filmic take on the classic Cinderella was crowned with a prestigious Prix Benois de la Danse, the ‘Oscar of dance’.
The principals are announced, learn more about who'll be dancing when.
Wheeldon’s staging is based on the original version popularised by the Brothers Grimm, which is both darker and more poetic than the version many people know. In the new libretto, written in collaboration with American playwright and screenwriter Craig Lucas, the characters are fleshed out as real people.
Christopher Wheeldon: ‘Cinderella is not the victim and drudge she’s often portrayed as being; I see her as more in control. She knows she has no choice, she has to put up with her father’s new wife and her daughters and she shoulders her burden with her head held high and a sense of inner pride. By the same token, the stepsisters are not wholly mean and vile.’
Christopher Wheeldon drew his inspiration for Cinderella from the Brothers Grimm story as well as the rich and multifaceted ballet music composed by Sergei Prokofiev in 1945.
For the world première of Cinderella at Dutch National Ballet in 2012, Wheeldon worked with a team of international artists to give the familiar story a completely new look.
Julian Crouch, a celebrated Metropolitan Opera and Broadway designer, created the storybook sets and opulent costuming for Cinderella, fusing historical Victorian fashion with haute couture à la Alexander McQueen and Vivienne Westwood. Julian Crouch is also responsible for the visual and costume design for this season’s Il barbiere di Siviglia at Dutch National Opera.
Offbeat American puppeteer and design Basil Twist imbues Cinderella with moments of pure magic, such as the tree symbolising the spirit of Cinderella’s mother that comes to life and then transforms into a carriage that whisks her to the ball.
The projections by multimedia artist Daniel Brodie add a cinematic dimension to complete the fairy tale experience.
Cinderella is a co-production with San Francisco Ballet and has swiftly risen to become part of the classic repertoire. This new classic has already appeared on numerous stages in the United States, Hong Kong and London.
Christopher WheeldonGuest choreographer
Choreographer Christopher Wheeldon (1973, Somerset, United Kingdom) holds a position as artistic associate of The Royal Ballet in London since 2012. Wheeldon was invited to dance with the New York City Ballet, and was promoted to soloist in 1998. He ended his dance career in 2000 to focus completely on a profession as choreographer.
Christopher Wheeldon and Craig Lucas
Set and costume design
Direction and design of tree and carriage scene
Dutch Ballet Orchestra
conducted by Matthew Rowe (19 - 24 Dec) and by Martin West (13 -17 Dec/26 Dec - 1 Jan)
Dutch Ballet Orchestra
Since its inception in 1965, the orchestra has been proud to accompany its partners, Dutch National Ballet and Nederlands Dans Theater. The working method is unique in the Netherlands. Dutch Ballet Orchestra, with Matthew Rowe as principal conductor, consists of a regular core of 45 musicians, supported where necessary by highly qualified guest performers. This gives the orchestra its unique character: flexible, dynamic and high-quality.
Dutch Ballet Orchestra combines music and dance into a magical experience: from classical ballet to modern dance, and from music education to talent development. The orchestra’s mission is to create an optimal synthesis between music and dance, in order to reach dance-lovers and ballet music enthusiasts, as well as children and youngsters.The orchestra has received several international awards for its educational projects, including the Young Audiences Music Award in 2016 for Creatures, a collaborative project with dance company ISH.
'Using a sophisticated machinery of front and backcloths, film projections and inventive light effects, the designers have created a magical set filled with surprises.’
‘No ballet choreographer of his generation can match his imaginative use of the classical vocabulary’
‘The fairy tale flies passed the eyes like a film, in fluently staged images' (…) ‘this Cinderella promises to become a massive hit.’
‘The imagination is so visionary that your jaw automatically drops open’
‘Magical and clear’ (...) ‘a sparkling ballet with momentum’ (...) ‘not a sickly sweet interpretation of a fairytale, but a clear narration in a magical staging filled with highlights’ (...) ‘a breathtaking spectacle’.