Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet

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Winnipeg, Manitoba (February 23, 2011)
– You can’t go online these days without seeing pointe shoes and pirouettes. Ballet is everywhere! It’s in the movies, in Top 40 music videos, even advertising executives are putting ballet dancers at the centre of nation-wide commercial campaigns. There can be no doubt that ballet is showing a resurgence in popular culture. At Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet, however, we believe that that the art form is timeless and evergreen. The beauty, grace, magic and intrigue of ballet on stage are not fleeting or faddish. They are qualities that have charmed audiences for centuries from Russia to Rome--and for 71 years in Winnipeg, Canada.

Is ballet making a comeback? Ballet never left!,” says André Lewis, RWB’s Artistic Director.

On behalf of André Lewis, Jeff Herd, RWB’s Executive Director, announced the RWB’s 72nd anniversary season in Winnipeg earlier today.  A perfect blend of old and new repertoire, classical and contemporary styles, familiar artists and new faces, the RWB’s 2011-2012 season will touch the hearts and minds of Winnipeg audiences.

Svengali     World Premiere
Visions of Glitter and Doom
October 19-23, 2011

Choreography – Mark Godden
Music – Sergei Rachmaninov, Franz Liszt, Amsterdam Klezmer Band
Costume Design – Paul Daigle
Scenic Design – Andrew Beck
Lighting Design – Pierre Lavoie
Based on the novel Trilby by George du Maurier

Yearning for public recognition, Svengali escapes the repression of his mother’s ballet studio to decadent cabarets reminiscent of mid-century Weimar, where he finds the beautiful and malleable young dancer, Trilby. Under Svengali’s entrancing influence, Trilby is transformed into the darling of the ballet world, but her star ultimately rises beyond Svengali’s powerful emotional grasp.

This complex psychological drama will unfold with riveting choreography by the creative powerhouse behind RWB’s Dracula, and shades of Maddinesque irreverence, as Svengali’s deepest family secrets are revealed. You’ll be mesmerized!

Holiday Treat for All Ages!
December 21-28, 2011

Choreography – Galina Yordanova & Nina Menon
Music – Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Costume Design – Paul Daigle
Scenic Design – Brian Perchaluk
Lighting Design – Michael J. Whitfield
With the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra

The charming holiday favourite still glitters more than a Christmas bauble.” -- Uptown Magazine, 2010

Nutcracker is back to bring joy and warmth to your winter season!  This classic yuletide tale with its gorgeous Tchaikovsky score has been wrapped in festive Canadian imagery and adorned with generous ribbons of fantasy and fun. This turn-of-the-century story is set in a stately mansion on Winnipeg’s Wellington Crescent where, after all the guests have left the grand dinner party, young Clara’s Christmas dreamworld comes to life. The beloved cast of characters is back – dancing mice, the Sugar Plum Fairy, toy soldiers and a mischievous dessert-stealing bear. Sparkling holiday fun for the whole family!

Classic Ballet Meets the Supernatural
March 7-11, 2012

Choreography – Peter Wright, after Jules Perrot, Jean Coralli and Marius Petipa

Music – Adolphe Adam
Scenario – Théophile Gautier and Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges
Produced by – Peter Wright
Scenic & Costume Design – Peter Farmer
Lighting Design  – Nicholas Cernovitch
With the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra

Joy, innocence, betrayal, death and salvation are conveyed in floating or vital images which are always beautiful, and often tremulously fragile.” -- The Edmonton Sun, 1995

Long considered one of the most beautiful and haunting of all classical ballets, the full-length masterpiece Giselle returns after more than a decade’s absence. This timeless work will have a fresh face with elegant, lush new sets and costumes and RWB’s thrilling dance virtuosity.

Set in the twilight spirit world of the Wilis, the German legend tells the story of a young peasant girl’s love for a nobleman and her ultimate betrayal at his hands. Giselle’s heartbreak and despair lead to her tragic demise, but she and the other jilted village girls seek their revenge from beyond the grave as irresistible spirits of a deathly dance.

Pure Ballet
Fluid Motion Virtuosic Dance
May 9-13, 2012


Choreography – Peter Quanz
Music – Marjan Mozetich
Costume Design – Anne Armit
Lighting Design – Robert Mravnik

Absorbing… masterly choreography…” -- The Financial Times, 2010

From the internationally-acclaimed choreographer and RWB alumnus Peter Quanz, whose In Tandem wowed New York audiences at the Guggenheim Museum last season, comes a gorgeous new work that explores romantic relationships at different stages in life.  Playful, intimate and poignant, the moonlit ballet is “by far the finest new work commissioned by Hong Kong Ballet …[in] two decades...” (Kevin Ng, The Financial Times, 2010). The award-winning Quanz has created for the world's leading ballet companies including the Kirov Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and Britain’s Royal Ballet.

The National Ballet of Canada - 60th Anniversary Tour
Provocative & Inspiring 
October 4, 2011 – One Night Only

Celebrating its 60th Anniversary, The National Ballet of Canada brings its proven excellence to Winnipeg for the first time in over a decade with this exciting evening of mixed repertoire.

the second detail

Choreography – William Forsythe
Staged by – Jill Johnson
Music  – Thom Willems
Costume, Scenic and Lighting Design – William Forsythe
White Dress Design – Issey Miyake

"As violent, hard-edged, and energizing as New York City, as weirdly stylish as the set's Issey Miyake dress or the Paris of Jean-Jacques Beineix's Diva..." -- The Globe and Mail, 1993

"It is a masterpiece by an American genius working at the peak of his powers." -- The Washington Times, 1992

One of the most sought-after of contemporary ballet choreographers, the great provocateur William Forsythe challenges ballet traditions with inspiring new paradigms. This is ballet with attitude, featuring an electronic score and hard-edged, playfully physical choreography. Penelope Reed Doob of The Globe and Mail (1991) called this a “brilliant cacophony of creativity” with movement that is “polished, virtuosic, finely honed.”

the second detail is a gift from The Volunteer Committee, The National Ballet of Canada.

Other Dances

Choreography – Jerome Robbins
Music  – Frédéric Chopin
Costume Design – Santo Loquasto
Lighting Design – Jennifer Tipton
Recreated by – Nicole Pearce

This piece was originally created for Natalia Makarova and Mikhail Baryshnikov in 1976 for a gala benefit for the Library of Performing Arts at Lincoln Center in New York. With simplicity and virtuosity, Other Dances features the Romantic lyricism of Chopin and the fluidity of classical ballet technique. This extended pas de deux has been heralded as “sheer magic” by the New York Times and an “unforgettable tribute to Chopin” by Ballet Magazine.

Performed with permission of The Robbins Rights Trust.


Choreography  – Crystal Pite
Original Commissioned Score – Owen Belton
Scenic Design – Jay Gower Taylor
Costume Design – Linda Chow
Lighting Design – Alan Brodie

A beautifully crafted, mysterious, impressionistic piece that … can also stand as a metaphor for human existence.” -- The Globe and Mail, 2009

This riveting, dark-hued work casts a swarming group of dancers, insect-like, in a fascinating subterranean universe. The award-winning Crystal Pite explores the instinct for creating social forms through innovative, organic movement, infused with atmospheric palettes of sound and tone. Emergence has won four Dora Mavor Moore Awards and critical acclaim across the country.

Emergence is generously supported by Gail Hutchison.

Ballet in the Park
July 27-29, 2011

A summer tradition since the late 1970s, Ballet in the Park attracts thousands of Manitobans and summer tourists to Assiniboine Park’s Lyric Theatre for complimentary performances by the RWB Company and the RWB School Professional Division.

Subscribe to an incredible season of dance in 2011-2012 with Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet starting March 9, 2011.  Buy early for the best seats!  Subscriptions range from $132 to $288 and are available through the RWB Customer Service Office at 380 Graham Avenue or by calling (204) 956-2792 or 1-800-667-4792.

Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet acknowledges and thanks the Canada Council for the Arts, the Manitoba Arts Council, the Winnipeg Arts Council, Arts Stabilization Manitoba and The Winnipeg Foundation for their ongoing support. 

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For more information, to arrange interviews, or for access to high-resolution images and video footage, please contact:

Kate Hodgert
Publicity Manager
Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet
380 Graham Avenue, Winnipeg, MB, R3C 4K2
(204) 957-3447


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