With a vast repertoire and international touring history in the Japanese performing arts, The Tokyo Ballet comes to Melbourne this July with the iconic Romantic ballet Giselle.
From classical ballets to celebrated unique contemporary works, The Tokyo Ballet is a future-focussed company sharing many values with The Australian Ballet. At the heart of both companies’ artistic visions is a desire to move audiences through unforgettable expressions of our art form.
In season 2023, The Australian Ballet will continue its history of developing strong connections with ballet companies around the world, welcoming Artistic Director Yukari Saito and The Tokyo Ballet to Melbourne.
“Welcoming The Tokyo Ballet continues the tradition of inviting the world’s great companies to Australia,” said The Australian Ballet’s Artistic Director, David’s Hallberg.
“Whenever I danced with this company, I was always in awe of their attention to the finest of details. Look for the precision of their corps de ballet, showcased so mesmerisingly in the haunting second act of Giselle,” said Hallberg.
“I think there is no other ballet in which the dancers’ acting is so important. Giselle allows each dancer’s personality to be pulled out and expressed fully through the ballet,” said The Tokyo Ballet’s Artistic Director, Yukari Saito.
The Tokyo Ballet will delight Australian audiences with Leonid Lavrovsky’s timeless Giselle. This tragic love story involving the young peasant girl Giselle and nobleman Albrecht, set to Adolphe Adam’s evocative score, is a jewel in the classical repertoire, first performed in Paris in 1841.
The classic story opens with a vibrant grape harvest scene in a rural village. Innocent young Giselle meets Count Albrecht, who has disguised himself as a peasant in order to win her love.
When Giselle discovers he is betrothed to another, she goes mad and dies of a broken heart. Transformed into a spirit, Giselle roams a forest haunted by the ghosts of jilted women, the Wilis, who take revenge on the men who cross their path by forcing them to dance to their deaths.
A remorseful Albrecht visits Giselle’s grave in the forest one night, and, in the ultimate act of forgiveness and love, she dances with him until the sun rises and the evil spirits fade; she saves his life and finds peace in the afterlife.
The artists of The Tokyo Ballet will enliven this production’s magical harmony between narrative and choreography that has enchanted generations.
Gracing the world’s most famous stages, including the Paris Opera, La Scala in Milan, the Vienna State Opera, and the Bolshoi Theatre and the Mariinsky Theatre in Russia, The Tokyo Ballet has performed in over 155 cities across 32 countries.
Choreography: Leonid Lavrovsky after Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot and Marius Petipa | Adaptation: (Pas de huit) Vladimir Vasiliev | Composer: Adolphe Adam | Set and Costume Design: Nicola Benois | Technical Director: Yoshiharu Tachikawa | Lighting Director: Takashi Kitamura | Conductor: Benjamin Pope | Featuring: Artists of The Tokyo Ballet, Orchestra Victoria
State Theatre – Arts Centre Melbourne, 100 St Kilda Road, Melbourne
Season: 14 – 22 July 2023
Information and Bookings: www.australianballet.com.au
Image: Artists of The Tokyo Ballet in Giselle – photo by Kiyonori Hasegawa