Australian Ballet Announces Season - Balanchine, Two World Premieres and More!

Symphony in C is an electrifying double bill seamlessly blending old and new to create a glittering showcase of ballet moments. The Australian Ballet pairs a George Balanchine classic with five bite size ballets,including two world premiere works by Company members Alice Topp and Richard House. An opportunity to see The Australian Ballet dancers at their classical best. Symphony in C runs 29 April to 14 May atSydney Opera House.

Lovers of modern classics will adore Balanchine's tutu extravaganza. The ballet after which the season is named, Symphony in C is regal in its black and white symmetry. Both firecracker fast and meltingly slow, it is a stunning tribute to the golden era of classical dance. The central pas de deux will have viewers holding their breath through a series of improbable balances and swooning falls. The ballet's original version was choreographed by Balanchine in just two weeks and premiered in 1947. As athletic as it is delicate, Symphony in C is one of his most loved abstract works. Set to music by George Bizet, Symphony in C was written when the composer was just 17 years of age in 1855 living as a student in Paris.

For this exclusive Sydney season, Balanchine's poetry is matched by a tasting menu of divertissements. The line-up shows the pas de deux at its radiant best with excerpts from the serene Grand Pas Classique andDiana & Actéon . They are placed alongside Christopher Wheeldon's electrically-charged After the Rain. Set to Arvo Pärt's haunting serene soundtrack, Wheeldon's work has moved audiences around the world to become a contemporary classic. Its jolting blend of tenderness and chemistry is akin to the intimacy of a private conversation between lovers.

To add further excitement to an already glittering night will be two world premiere works by members of The Australian Ballet, Alice Topp and Richard House, who have already generated attention following theirBodytorque ballets.

Now Topp and House take to the mainstage for the first time and they bring with them a loyal legion of fans. Topp has attracted critical acclaim for past works Trace (2015, 2010), Same Vein (2014), Tinted Windows(2013), and Scope (2011). Likewise, House has established his mark works Finding the Calm (2013), Control(2014) and From Something to Nothing (2015). All eyes will be on both young artists on opening night for this milestone as they enter the main arena.

Richard House says he relishes the chance to unleash his creativity in his new work, Scent of Love, but he intends to let the music lead the process. He is thrilled to be working with two pieces of music by world renowned composer Michael Nyman, Love Doesn't End and The Scent of Love.

"I am thrilled to create a ballet around two of my all-time favourite pieces. I've been working to develop my craft before I felt ready to work with music by an artist of this scale. But the timing feels right, and I am delighted to be taking on one of the masters of music of our time. Michael Nyman's searing, epic scores are the perfect vehicle of inspiration for any artist," said House.

Alice Topp explains her new work, Little Atlas, is based around the notion of memory and our attempts to recreate or unmake memories. "The work explores our connection to people and places of the past. In particular, our attachment to the way these things made us feel, whether they're events that continue to plague us or places we return to for sanctuary. Together, with our own unique map of scars and stories, imprinted on our brains, we carry these memories though the trinity of past, future and present, bringing both a sense of comfort and discomfort, burden and blessing," said Topps.

The Australian Ballet's Artistic Director David McAllister looks forward to this Sydney season. "George Balanchine's works have inspired dancers and choreographers around the globe, as they strive to attain the creativity and beauty that he did over his prolific career. We are thrilled to bring Symphony in the C back to the stage with all the verve and joy that is at the heart of Balanchine's work. This program celebrates both his inspirations and his legacy which includes two exciting world premieres from our own young choreographers Alice Topp and Richard House as they follow in his footsteps to chart the future of our art-form."

What the critics had to say on Symphony in C:
"Arms frame faces, limbs circle the body like constellations of stars around a beautiful and radiant sun."
- The Age

BOOKINGS or call 1300 369 741

Choreography George Balanchine © School of American Ballet
Music Georges Bizet Symphony No. 1 in C major
Costume and set design Tom Lingwood
Original lighting design William Akers

After the Rain © Choreography Christopher Wheeldon
Grand pas classique Choreography Victor Gsovsky
Diana and Acteon Choreography Agrippina Vaganova
Little Atlas Choreography Alice Topp
Scent of Love Choreography Richard House

29 APRIL - 14 MAY
Joan Sutherland Theatre
Sydney Opera House
With the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra

Audiences are invited to step inside the ballet with special events during the Symphony in C season.

Stay behind after the show for a special Q&A with Artistic Director David McAllister and a panel of artistic staff and dancers.
Sydney Opera House
Post Show

McAllister in Conversation
Artistic Director David McAllister hosts an intimate talk with a luminary from the ballet world.
Sydney Opera House
Tickets $25

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