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Press Release: Northern Ballet announces new children’s ballet Pinocchio

Jan McNulty

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Wednesday 19 May 2021
For immediate release

World Première

Northern Ballet announces new children’s ballet Pinocchio


An illustration of Pinocchio. He is wearing orange overalls and is standing on a circus podium with circus tents in the background.


Leeds, Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre

26 – 30 October 2021 and 7 – 11 December 2021


Northern Ballet has announced the world première of Pinocchio, a new children’s ballet choreographed and directed by Gavin McCaig. The world première will take place on 26 October 2021 at the Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre, Leeds with performances until 30 October, followed by a further run of performances during the festive season from 7 – 11 December 2021.


Initially intended to première in 2020 but postponed due to the pandemic, Pinocchio will be the newest production in Northern Ballet’s pioneering series of short ballets for young people which have also achieved huge success in adaptations for TV and cinema. 


In this original retelling of the Italian story by Carlo Collodi, a lonely carpenter wishes for his puppet Pinocchio to come to life. After his dream comes true by the magic of a wishing well, Pinocchio sets out to prove himself worthy of becoming a real boy.


With a choreographic debut by Northern Ballet’s Junior Soloist Gavin McCaig, Pinocchio is a child-friendly 40-minute-long ballet, and will be performed to music by Ian Stephens, played live by members of Northern Ballet Sinfonia. Sets are designed by Frankie Bradshaw, lighting by Abbi Fearnley, and costumes designed by Kim Brassley and Carley Marsh. 


Gavin McCaig said: “Having proposed Pinocchio in 2019, I am delighted to get into the studio and begin bringing the characters and story to life with the Company’s world-class dance-actors. In what will be Northern Ballet’s eighth ballet created specifically for young children, it is both a privilege and a pleasure to be creating for the next generation of audiences and artists. I simply can’t wait to see it come to the stage soon.”   


For more information and booking details visit northernballet.com/pinocchio




Notes to Editors


Production Credits

Choreography & Direction Gavin McCaig

Music Ian Stephens

Set Design Frankie Bradshaw

Lighting Design Abbi Fearnley

Costume Design Kim Brassley & Carley Marsh

An original ballet based on The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi. 


Performance Details


World Première

Leeds, Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre

26 – 30 October 2021

7 – 11 December 2021




Website: theatreleeds.com


Northern Ballet

Northern Ballet is one of the UK’s leading ballet companies and the widest touring ballet company in the UK. Bold and innovative in its approach, Northern Ballet is prolific at creating new full-length work with a unique blend of strong classical technique and impressive storytelling. Northern Ballet’s repertoire embraces popular culture and takes inspiration from literature, legend, opera and the classics, pushing the boundaries of what stories can be told through dance.


A champion for the cultural exports of the North, Leeds-based Northern Ballet is dedicated to bringing ballet to as many people and places as possible, under the leadership of Artistic Director David Nixon OBE. Northern Ballet’s Company of dancers performs a combination of its full-length ballets and specially created ballets for children at more than 40 venues annually.


For more details of Northern Ballet's tour, on sale dates and booking information, please visit northernballet.com/whatson


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Illustration by Emily Nuttall.

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This is such exciting News, Gavin is a fabulous Human  and  if you look at the names  who have choreographed  the other  Norther Ballet ' little ballets for little people'  ...  

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