The Persia of legend and fantasy provides the backdrop for the thwarted loves of the hunter Djemil, the beautiful Nouredda, promised to the Khan, and the spirit of the spring, Naila. For his first creation for the Paris Opera Ballet, Etoile Dancer Jean-Guillaume Bart breathes new life into a long neglected work from the repertoire, originally created for the Paris Opera in 1866. The light and colourful score was a joint effort from Ludwig Minkus and Léo Delibes in what was their first ballet composition. The libretto by Arthur Saint-Léon and Charles Nuitter, future composer of Coppélia, draws on Wagnerian romanticism, orientalism and Shakespearean influences and contrasts the real world with that of elves, nymphs and ethereal beings. Working in close collaboration with the dramatist Clément Hervieu-Léger, Jean-Guillaume Bart restores all its original freshness to La Source. This wonderfully poetic dance tale of astounding virtuosity is further enhanced by Christian Lacroix’s flamboyant costumes and Eric Ruf’s evocative use of space.