The Australian Ballet‘s 2020 program includes five productions, plus a run of special events, talks and classes, offering exclusive behind-the-scenes access to the company.
It’s the last from outgoing Artistic Director David McAllister, and features classic ballets, as well as new works from Australian artists like Australian Ballet resident choreographers Alice Topp, Tim Harbour and Stephen Baynes.
A ballet retelling of short story The Happy Prince by Oscar Wilde opens the season, beginning in Brisbane in February, before moving on to Melbourne in August and Sydney in November. After creating modern interpretations of Swan Lake and The Nutcracker for the company, Aussie choreographer Graeme Murphy returns to lead this all-new work, with Kim Carpenter collaborating with him to adapt the much-loved story for the ballet, and Christopher Gordon composing the original score.
Opening in Melbourne in March and Sydney in April, Volt features three works – including the brand new commission Logos by Alice Topp. Chroma, the first act, features choreography from Wayne McGregor, and music from Joby Talbot and Jack White (yes, that Jack White), as Talbot reimagines White Stripes songs for dancers. Dyad 1929 is the final act, with choreography from McGregor and music from Steve Reich. Topp’s commission bounces off the McGregor works, the resident choreographer having performed in Chroma and collaborated on Dyad 1929. The two surrounding works give context to Topp’s vital modern dance work.
Anna Karenina opens in Sydney in April, before touring to Melbourne in June, and Adelaide in July. This epic ballet based on the Leo Tolstoy tome is choreographed by world-renowned dance-maker Yuri Possokhov, as the centrepiece of the company’s season.
Three works under the title of Molto play in Melbourne in June, and then tour to Sydney in November. The first work is Frederick Ashton’s A Month In The Country, which sets Ivan Turgenev’s play to the music of Chopin. Then, resident choreographers, Tim Harbour and Stephen Baynes craft the modern and gripping Squander And Glory and Molto Vivace respectively.
Closing the Australian Ballet’s season in September is Harlequinade in Melbourne, from American Ballet Theatre artist in residence, Alexei Ratmansky via master choreographer Marius Petipa. It’s a bright comedy based on commedia dell’arte characters, lovebirds Harlequin and Columbine.