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PRESS RELEASE: Birmingham Royal Ballet announces Beyond Words 2018/19 season, including four world premieres


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Birmingham Royal Ballet announces Beyond Words 2018/19 season, including four world premieres 

11 productions, 13 venues and 159 performances in a year of bold creations and classic stories

 
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Birmingham Royal Ballet’s 2018/19 season weaves a series of enduring stories into dance, bringing them to life for a modern world. The timeless beauty of a ballerina silhouetted in the wings, the electrifying thrill of daring dance, the swell of strings in a darkened theatre; these are the almost indescribable moments when hearts race, imaginations ignite and memories are made. Be inspired and moved by the evocative power of ballet, in a world Beyond Words season.

Throughout the course of the season, the Company will give an astonishing 159 performances of 11 different productions at 13 venues across the country, with 90% of its shows taking place outside London.

From the perpetual sunshine of Frederick Ashton’s La Fille mal gardée (26 Sep – 10 Nov), to the storybook fantasy of David Bintley’s Beauty and the Beast (30 Jan – 30 Mar), and the endearing, mischievous fun of Hobson’s Choice (19 – 26 Jun), the full-length ballets of the Beyond Words season capture classic stories loved by all, told in a universal language.


Juanjo Arqués and Didy Veldman deliver two of the season’s four world premieres as part of Birmingham Royal Ballet’s pioneering Ballet Now talent development programme. The Fire & Fury mixed programme (3 - 31 October) welcomes back David Bintley’s The King Dances alongside Juanjo Arqués’s Ignite. Inspired by William Turner’s painting ‘The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons’, Ignite will translate vibrant colour into atmospheric choreography, inspiring a symbolic narrative unique to each audience member.

Didy Veldman’s new work for the Company premieres as part of a mixed programme of female choreography, [Un]leashed (12 – 29 Jun). The bill features Jessica Lang’s beautiful Lyric Pieces alongside the world premiere of Petra and the Wolf, an innovative contemporary view of the classic tale choreographed by Birmingham Royal Ballet First Artist, Ruth Brill.

Petra and the Wolf also appears as part of the Company’s new midscale offering, Home from Home. Inspired by Sergei Prokofiev’s symphonic fairytale, Petra and the Wolf will blend classical ballet with a fusion of urban influences to create a vibrant, multi-disciplinary production. Petra and the Wolf is accompanied by the world premiere of A Season in Our World, which takes the audience on a journey through a diverse range of music genres and dance traditions from around the world.

Sir Peter Wright’s acclaimed production of The Nutcracker returns to Birmingham Hippodrome for the festive season (23 Nov – 13 Dec), transporting the audience beyond the theatre to a realm of giant Christmas trees and dancing snowflakes.

The acclaimed Royal Ballet Sinfonia takes centre stage once more for the spectacular Evening of Music and Dance. This popular annual gala, compered by David Bintley, includes well-loved gems and hidden classics selected by the Royal Ballet Sinfonia conductors alongside danced excerpts from Birmingham Royal Ballet’s repertory.

Alongside the main programme, Birmingham Royal Ballet continues to introduce new audiences from touring venues across the country to their world-class dance and music. From primary schools to care homes, community centres to museums, the Company unlocks amazing opportunities for people of all ages and abilities.

Younger audience members continue to enjoy Birmingham Royal Ballet’s First Steps programme. These hour-long, interactive shows are specially adapted for children aged 3+. A storyteller captures their imagination, introducing the music, leading characters and some of the technical magic – the perfect introduction to ballet.

 

La Fille mal gardée

September – November 2018

Music: Ferdinand Hérold
Arranged by: John Lanchbery
Choreography: Frederick Ashton
Designs: Osbert Lancaster
Lighting: Peter Teigen

Birmingham Hippodrome
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com
Wednesday 26 – Saturday 29 September
On sale: Season subscription 13 March 11am, single tickets 19 April 11am

Plymouth Theatre Royal
Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2TR; 01752 267222
theatreroyal.com
Thursday 11 – Saturday 13 October
On sale: 2 March

The Lowry, Salford
Lowry Outlet, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ; 0843 208 6000
thelowry.com
Wednesday 24 - Saturday 27 October
On sale: 23 February

Sadler’s Wells, London
Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN; 020 7863 8000
sadlerswells.com
Thursday 1 – Saturday 3 November
On sale: to be announced

Grand Opera House, Belfast
goh.co.uk
2-4 Great Victoria St, Belfast, BT2 7HR; 028 9024 1919
Wednesday 7 – Saturday 10 November
On sale now


Fire & Fury
October 2018

The King Dances
Music: Stephen Montague
Choreography: David Bintley
Designs: Katrina Lindsey
Lighting: Peter Mumford

Ignite
Music: Gabriel Prokofiev
Choreography: Juanjo Arqués
Designs: Tatyana Van Walsum
Lighting: Bert Dalhuysen

Birmingham Hippodrome
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com`
Wednesday 3 – Saturday 6 October
On sale: Season subscription 13 March 11am, single tickets 19 April 11am

Plymouth Theatre Royal
Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2TR; 01752 267222
theatreroyal.com
Tuesday 9 – Wednesday 10 October
On sale: 2 March

Sadler’s Wells, London
Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN; 020 7863 8000
sadlerswells.com
Tuesday 30 – Wednesday 31 October
On sale: to be announced 

The Nutcracker
Birmingham Hippodrome, Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com
Friday 23 November  Thursday 13 December
On sale now

Music: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Choreography: Peter Wright; Lev Ivanov; Vincent Redmond
Production: Peter Wright
Designs: John F. MacFarlane
Lighting: David A. Finn

Beauty and the Beast
January – May 2019

Music: Glen Buhr
Choreography: David Bintley
Designs: Philip Prowse
Lighting: Mark Jonathan

Mayflower Theatre, Southampton
22-26 Commercial Rd, Southampton, SO15 1GE; 023 8071 1811
mayflower.org.uk
Wednesday 30 January – Saturday 2 February
On sale now

Birmingham Hippodrome
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com
Wednesday 20 February  Saturday 2 March
On sale: Season subscription 13 March 11am, single tickets 19 April 11am

Plymouth Theatre Royal
Royal Parade, Plymouth, PL1 2TR; 01752 267222
theatreroyal.com
Wednesday 6 – Saturday 9 March
On sale: to be announced

Edinburgh Festival Theatre
13-29 Nicolson St, Edinburgh, EH8 9FT; 0131 529 6000
edtheatres.com/festival
Wednesday 13 - Saturday 16 March
On sale: to be announced 

The Lowry, Salford
Lowry Outlet, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ; 0843 208 6000
thelowry.com
Wednesday 20 – Saturday 23 March
On sale: to be announced 

Sunderland Empire
High Street West, Sunderland, SR1 3EX; 0844 871 7627
atgtickets.com/venues/sunderland-empire
Thursday 28  – Saturday 30 March
On sale: to be announced 

Bristol Hippodrome
St Augustine’s Parade, Bristol, BS1 4UZ; 0844 871 7627
atgtickets.com/venues/bristol-hippodrome
Performance dates to be announced 

Evening of Music & Dance
February 2019

Symphony Hall, Birmingham
Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2EA; 0121 780 3333
thsh.co.uk
Friday 15 February, 7.30pm
On sale: to be announced 


Home from Home
May 2019

A Season in Our World
Further details to be announced. 

Petra and the Wolf

Music: Sergei Prokofiev
Choreography: Ruth Brill
Dramaturgy: David Bintley

Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham
7-10 Regent St, Cheltenham, GL50 1HQ; 01242 572 573
everymantheatre.org.uk
Friday 10 – Saturday 11 May
On sale: to be announced 

Royal & Derngate Theatre, Northampton
Guildhall Rd, Northampton, NN1 1DP; 01604 624 811
royalandderngate.co.uk
Tuesday 14 – Wednesday 15 May
On sale: to be announced

Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury
Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury, SY3 8FT; 01743 281 281
theatresevern.co.uk
Friday 17 – Saturday 18 May
On sale: to be announced

Nottingham Theatre Royal
Theatre Square, Nottingham, NG1 5ND; 0115 989 5555
trch.co.uk
Friday 24 – Saturday 25 May
On sale: to be announced

[Un]leashed
June 2019

Lyric Pieces
Music: Edvard Grieg
Choreography: Jessica Lang
Designs: Elena Comendador
Lighting: Nicole Pearce

New Veldman – title to be confirmed
Music: Kate Whitley
Choreography: Didy Veldman

Petra and the Wolf
Music: Sergei Prokofiev
Choreography: Ruth Brill
Dramaturgy: David Bintley

Birmingham Hippodrome
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com
Wednesday 12 – Saturday 15 June
On sale: Season subscription 13 March 11am, single tickets 19 April 11am

Sadler’s Wells, London
Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN; 020 7863 8000
sadlerswells.com
w/c 24 June – performance dates to be announced
On sale: to be announced 

Hobson’s Choice
June 2019

Music: Paul Reade
Choreography: David Bintley
Designs: Hayden Griffin and Claudia Meyer
Lighting: John B. Read

Birmingham Hippodrome
Hurst St, Southside, Birmingham, B5 4TB; 0844 338 5000
birminghamhippodrome.com
Wednesday 19 – Saturday 22 June

Sadler’s Wells, London
Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN; 020 7863 8000
sadlerswells.com
w/c 24 June – performance dates to be announced
On sale: to be announced

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Birmingham Royal Ballet 
Based at Birmingham Hippodrome since 1990, Birmingham Royal Ballet is the United Kingdom’s leading classical ballet touring company performing a range of traditional, classical and heritage ballets as well as ground-breaking new works with the aim of encouraging choreographers of the future.

The company’s Director is the award-winning David Bintley, CBE, Chief Executive is Jan Teo and Music Director is Koen Kessels. Birmingham Royal Ballet performs at Birmingham Hippodrome for approximately ten weeks of the year and the remainder of the year tours throughout the United Kingdom and overseas.   

The Royal Ballet Sinfonia is Britain's busiest ballet orchestra, playing for Birmingham Royal Ballet's wide-ranging programme in the UK and abroad. The Sinfonia also plays frequently for The Royal Ballet and many of the world's other leading ballet companies, including regular performances with; The Royal Ballet, Paris Opéra Ballet, New York City Ballet, Australian Ballet, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, the Kirov, Norwegian Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, San Francisco Ballet and La Scala Ballet.

 
Ballet Now
Ballet Now presents Birmingham Royal Ballet with the unique opportunity to support emerging choreographic talent, international artists and attract a new diverse audience of over 15,000 people per year. In order to fund the programme across the five year period, The Oak Foundation have committed £1.1 million, alongside further donations of £150,000 from the Anthony Coombs Trust, £150,000 from the Keith Coombs Trust and £10,000 from the John S Cohen Foundation.
 
Oak Foundation 
Ballet Now has been made possible through the granting of funding from Oak Foundation’s Special Interest Programme and ongoing fundraising. Oak Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social and environmental concern, particularly those that have a major impact on the lives of the disadvantaged. Oak’s Special Interest Programme reflects the Trustees’ interest in making dynamic, diverse, large, innovative and challenging grants. Oak Foundation’s Trustees are committed to remaining flexible and to seizing opportunities as they arise. Special Interest grants cover a wide range of fields including health, humanitarian relief, education and the arts. They are made to organisations whose activities the Trustees wish to support, irrespective of country or region.
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It will be great to see Hobsons again and Fille will be a delight. But no Balanchine once more even though BRB used to dance a wide range of his masterpieces, and dance them well. .

 

But the biggest disappointment for me is that the North East is virtually ignored. Just one programme in Sunderland, instead of the usual two, and no doubt only four performances at that (they used to do eight a week, plus perform at Newcastle) and no midscale performances at all,  although York and Durham were successful venues. Most of the venues they are going to are in areas which enjoy far more ballet and dance performances than the North East or North Yorkshire.

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11 hours ago, toursenlair said:

they usually announce their midscale tours much later, don't they?

 

 

Much later!  However it only seems to be half a midscale!  I await to see what is going to happen with the very established venues in York and Durham, which had never missed a year although other venues changed.

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3 hours ago, Pulcinella said:

Yes but the venues so far announced are mainly "North" venues apart from Cheltenham which is a "South", so are they only doing one tour instead of two next year? Not only are York and Durham not included but neither are Poole and Truro.

 

In recent years the definition of North and South and indeed Northweast and Southwest has been seriously blurred by BRB's midscale tours.  I would actually have described the venues listed as Midlands!

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18 hours ago, SheilaC said:

It will be great to see Hobsons again and Fille will be a delight. But no Balanchine once more even though BRB used to dance a wide range of his masterpieces, and dance them well. .

 

But the biggest disappointment for me is that the North East is virtually ignored. Just one programme in Sunderland, instead of the usual two, and no doubt only four performances at that (they used to do eight a week, plus perform at Newcastle) and no midscale performances at all,  although York and Durham were successful venues. Most of the venues they are going to are in areas which enjoy far more ballet and dance performances than the North East or North Yorkshire.

I so agree, I am suffering Balanchine withdrawal symptoms...just hoping we might  get some from RB.

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It does not appear to be a midscale "of old" as there is no overlapping on dates......good!....but I suspect there is no split of the company as the dates share the same rep.

Has the Arts Council stepped in here as yes they are Mids venues

I am also pleased to see the return of "Hobsons"  but  hope that the support for "Fille" is better than last time at the Hippodrome.

I wish them well with the triples,they will be very difficult to sell.

Continued financial restraint seems to be ever taking its toll.I am very disappointed in this season and for the first time since they(inc SWRB) came to Brum will not be taking a subscription.

 

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21 hours ago, SheilaC said:

But the biggest disappointment for me is that the North East is virtually ignored. Just one programme in Sunderland, instead of the usual two, and no doubt only four performances at that (they used to do eight a week, plus perform at Newcastle) and no midscale performances at all,  although York and Durham were successful venues. Most of the venues they are going to are in areas which enjoy far more ballet and dance performances than the North East or North Yorkshire.

 

True...but at least Scottish Ballet tour to Newcastle so it's not a ballet free zone.  Really I am just pleased Sunderland is getting some ballet as it stopped for a while didn't it?  It is not my local any more so I wasn't paying much attention but it seemed like last year maybe they didn't tour there.  Then I noticed they are bringing Coppelia this April...let's hope it sells. 

 

The season looks good anyway...I have never seen Hobson's Choice so looking forward to that.  La Fille is always a treat and Beauty and the Beast sounds good.

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3 hours ago, mauriceC said:

It does not appear to be a midscale "of old" as there is no overlapping on dates......good!....but I suspect there is no split of the company as the dates share the same rep.

Has the Arts Council stepped in here as yes they are Mids venues

I am also pleased to see the return of "Hobsons"  but  hope that the support for "Fille" is better than last time at the Hippodrome.

I wish them well with the triples,they will be very difficult to sell.

Continued financial restraint seems to be ever taking its toll.I am very disappointed in this season and for the first time since they(inc SWRB) came to Brum will not be taking a subscription.

 

Me too Maurice, although I must confess that i was well on the way to making that decision anyway as I was getting really irritated to have same dancer as first cast in pretty much everything.

 

I am very pleased to see Hobson's return as are so many other posters  here but I was hoping that the plans for La Bayadere would reappear.

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As I understand it, mid-scale is now to be restricted to "Midlands" theatres, including Nottingham and Cheltenham. I imagine that this year the tours to Japan and Virginia have taken heir toll. But in the end the Arts  Council calls the tune and its control seems increasingly irrational and changeable.

I share the feeling that it is wrong that audiences in York, Durham, Poole etc are to be ignored after years of audience building.

On the other hand ticket sales at Poole in 2017 were poor so it may be case of support it or lose it.

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On 13/02/2018 at 23:41, SheilaC said:

But the biggest disappointment for me is that the North East is virtually ignored. Just one programme in Sunderland, instead of the usual two, and no doubt only four performances at that (they used to do eight a week, plus perform at Newcastle) and no midscale performances at all,  although York and Durham were successful venues. Most of the venues they are going to are in areas which enjoy far more ballet and dance performances than the North East or North Yorkshire.

And it's Beauty and the Beast, again. It's not that I dislike the ballet, but I do feel it's the last thing I'd choose to see out of the season they've laid out. In recent years the rep they've brought to Sunderland has been playing it safe to say the least: Cinderella, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, although I do love Peter Wright's Coppelia and am looking forward to seeing it again in April. It's been five years, I think, since we had a triple bill. The situation used to be mitigated by the mid-scale tours, but no longer. And while I love seeing Scottish Ballet in Newcastle, again the rep they bring is always whatever they do in Edinburgh over Christmas - Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, The Nutcracker; the same few ballets on repeat. Having lived in Edinburgh, and followed SB closely, I am very aware that this isn't all they can do - but it's all we see. 

Oh well...I'm just looking through my diary and planning trips to visit conveniently-located friends and family so that I can see something that isn't a fairy tale!     

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Not a lot in this announcement for me either: Hobson's Choice (which I've never seen) is the pick of the bunch IMO.  (I already knew about Fille, as it's coming to Bristol this summer.)

 

That said I understand the need to balance the books, and if Beauty and the Beast helps with that than I can't really complain. I just wish they'd dug deeper into the back catalogue for the mixed bills. :( 

Edited by Lizbie1
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I am a little surprised about the somewhat negative response to the new season announcement. I am very excited at the return of Hobson’s- long overdue.. I am always happy to watch the delightful La Fille and come out with a soppy grin on my face. I admit that Beauty is not my favourite Bintley ballet but it does have sone great moments and incidentally I can’t agree about it being done frequently. I know that my aged memory is far from good but I don’t think we have seen it that recently and certainly not as often as Coppelia. I am quite thrilled about the mixed bills. I think the revival of the brilliant Kind Dances is great news, I much enjoyed Lyric Pieces when it was first performed and I think the two new ballets sound very intriguing. I hate the expression “What’snot to like “ but in this case I feel it is appropriate and I am more than happy to renew my subscription.

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18 minutes ago, George C said:

 incidentally I can’t agree about it being done frequently. I know that my aged memory is far from good but I don’t think we have seen it that recently and certainly not as often as Coppelia. 

Fair comment, George - I think I'm conflating it in my memory with David Nixon's B&B which NB brought last year to Newcastle and which was their Christmas ballet in Leeds. The ravens is the bit that sticks out most in my memory. I remember Alexander Campbell doing it often back in the day (perhaps he created it).  

 

Personally I'm surprised that Hobson's isn't replacing some of the B&B venues on the tour, particularly the northern ones, as I would imagine it will sell well. I wonder if it will tour further in the 2019/2020 season.   

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3 hours ago, RHowarth said:

Fair comment, George - I think I'm conflating it in my memory with David Nixon's B&B which NB brought last year to Newcastle and which was their Christmas ballet in Leeds. The ravens is the bit that sticks out most in my memory. I remember Alexander Campbell doing it often back in the day (perhaps he created it).  

 

Personally I'm surprised that Hobson's isn't replacing some of the B&B venues on the tour, particularly the northern ones, as I would imagine it will sell well. I wonder if it will tour further in the 2019/2020 season.   

 

Michael Revie created the role of the Raven when it premiered in December 2003.  Other dancers that season were Chi Cao and Kosuke Yamamoto.  I think Alex did it the next time round a couple of years later.  Last time around Max Maslen was wonderful in the role and I very much enjoyed Tzu-Chao Chou too. 

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Although I am not going to renew my subscription this doesn't mean I won't be going.  I agree with Maurice that the triple bills will be a hard sell so I will take pot luck nearer the time.  I will definitely be going to Hobson's though, not least as hubby is very keen to see it.  I might try to get him to Fille too.

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7 hours ago, George C said:

I admit that Beauty is not my favourite Bintley ballet but it does have sone great moments and incidentally I can’t agree about it being done frequently. I know that my aged memory is far from good but I don’t think we have seen it that recently and certainly not as often as Coppelia.

 

Beauty & The Beast was last done in Brum Oct 2014. Coppelia, Feb 2015 and June 2017.

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After two years(possibly more) of complaining  about the short notice given to subscribers I have to say that I am impressed with the much improved service this time.Almost a week to study the season,a clear system of ordering and no need to panic ! Well done. One small quibble -  I still object to the Nutcracker not being included in the package AND having to book a year ahead to get ones favourite seat

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Like Two Pigeons,I  will still be going and have no intention of not supporting a Company I have followed for more than 50 years..

I do not have favourite seats and am not particularly happy with my present subscription ones which mysteriously moved back three rows a couple of years back.;my concern for the Company is that I suspect I will have little trouble getting decent seats late on for all except Nutcracker.So I will book when I see the castings.

After seeing two splendid "Beauty" performances in Brum this week,the public should be queuing round the block to see BRB.

 

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