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Press Release: Ugly Duckling takes to the road (Northern Ballet)

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Northern Ballet

Media Release

For immediate release


8 February 2013


Ugly Duckling takes to the road


Following sell-out performances in Leeds, Northern Ballet’s first short ballet for small people, Ugly Duckling, begins an extensive tour to theatres across the North of England from 12 March.


Choreographed by Northern Ballet dancers Dreda Blow and Sebastian Loe, Ugly Duckling received rave reviews from audiences and critics at performances in Leeds last autumn. 


Based on the classic Hans Christian Andersen fairytale, it tells the story of a lonely duckling who doesn’t quite fit in with her friends. Throughout the ballet, the duckling learns about herself and those around her and when she learns to love who she is she turns into a beautiful swan and begins a happy new life.


Sebastian Loe said, ‘The great thing about Ugly Duckling and other children's stories is that they teach important and timeless
values from a young age. The message we want to put across in Ugly Duckling is that we should be confident in embracing who we are and ultimately we should not be afraid of being ourselves.’


Dreda Blow said, ‘According to my parents, I saw my first ballet when I was only two years old and was absolutely riveted! I sat perfectly still, my eyes glued to the stage the entire time. If our production of Ugly Duckling inspires children to start ballet lessons then that's great, but mostimportantly I hope it awakens in them a love and appreciation for the magic of dance and theatre in general.’


The colourful production for children aged four and up features a host of animal characters including cats, frogs and a wily fox. The performance is 40 minutes in length and the music ranges from classical compositions to the theme tunes of popular children’s cartoons.


This hugely popular production, supported by Leeds Inspired, is designed to encourage children and young families to see their first ballet at anaffordable price. Tickets range from £4 to £8 depending on the venue.



Notes to Editors


Northern Ballet is renowned for its full-length narrative productions which embrace popular culture and take inspiration from literature, opera, or give a unique interpretation of classical ballets. The Leeds-based company is committed to touring throughout the UK and overseas, developing new audiences for dance. 


Ugly Duckling isan audience outreach project funded by Leeds City Council and is part of Leeds Inspired which celebrates arts, sport and heritage events. This is the first time Northern Ballet has produced a ballet specifically for young children and the aim is to engage families in theatre, art and music in a fun, lively and approachable way.


Leeds Inspired is a Leeds City Council initiative which supports arts, sport and heritage events around the region and offers grants to individuals and organisations for cultural projects. Leeds Inspired is supported by a group of partners including West Yorkshire Playhouse, SAA-UK, Cultivate, Leeds Young Authors, Leeds Initiative, Leeds Met Gallery, Phoenix Dance and Duke Studios.



Ugly Duckling Tour Listings


Middlesbrough Theatre

Tue 12 March

1.30pm & 5pm

Box Office 01642 815 181


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Hexham Queen’s Hall Arts Centre

Wed 13 March

12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01434 652 477


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Liverpool Playhouse

Fri 15 March

11.30am, 1.30pm & 5pm

Box Office 0151 709 4776


£8 Adults & £6 Children


Huddersfield Lawrence Batley Theatre

Sat 16 March

12pm, 2.15pm & 4pm

Box Office 01484 430 528


£6 Adults & £4.50 Children


Newcastle Dance City

Tue 19 March

11.30am & 1.30pm

Box Office 01912 610 505


All tickets £6


Bradford Kala Sangam

Wed 20 March

1.30pm, 3pm & 6pm

Box Office 01274 303 340


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Whitby Pavilion

Fri 22 March

12pm, 2.15pm & 4pm

Box Office 01947 604 855


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Berwick-upon-Tweed The Maltings

Sat 23 March


Box Office 01289 330 999


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Blackpool Grand Theatre

Tue 26 March

12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01253 743 343


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Leicester Curve Theatre

Thu 28 March

12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01162 423 595


All tickets £5


Barrow-in-Furness The Forum

Thu 4 April

1pm & 3.30pm

Box Office 01229 820 000


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Lancaster The Dukes

Fri 5 April

2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01524 598 500


£6 Adults & £5 Children


Harrogate Theatre

Sat 6 April

12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01423 502 116


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Barnsley Civic

Tue 9 April

12pm, 2pm & 4pm

Box Office 01226 327 000


£5 Adults & £4 Children


Hull Truck Theatre

Wed 10 April

12pm & 2pm

Box Office 01482 323 638


£6 Adults & £4 Children


Goole Junction

Sat 13 April

2pm & 6.30pm

Box Office 01405 763 652


£5 Adults & £4 Children


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