Birmingham braced for week of ballet shows

A feast of ballet is in store for visitors to Birmingham with two outstanding productions reaching city theatres during the coming week.

The Balletboyz will bring contemporary dance to The New Alexandra Theatre
The Balletboyz will bring contemporary dance to The New Alexandra Theatre

A feast of ballet is in store for visitors to Birmingham with two outstanding productions reaching city theatres during the coming week.

Birmingham Royal Ballet will perform Spring Passions at the Hippodrome from Wednesday to March 3.

The show will comprise two uplifting stories of the survival of young love when tested to breaking point.

BRB spokesman Simon Harper said the first part would feature Daphnis and Chloe, a fantastical tale set on an island paradise in ancient Greece.

He said the story centred on a young man’s lover, taken from him then returned by a god.

Mr Harper said: “Struggling against his jealous rival, Dorkon, the beautiful Lykanion’s attempts to seduce him and bands of wild Pirates, Daphnis must turn to creatures of myth and legend for aid.

“When Chloë is kidnapped by the pirate leader, Bryaxis, the distraught Daphnis has a vision of three beautiful nymphs. The Nymphs invoke the god Pan, who rescues Chloë and reunites her with her lover.”

The piece will be set to Maurice Ravel’s great orchestral score and feature choreography by Frederick Ashton.

Meanwhile, the second half will feature The Two Pigeons, Frederick Ashton’s poignant Parisian idyll which tells of a young man growing up and finding himself frustrated with the immaturity of his fiancée.

Mr Harper said: “He flies the nest, leaving her to her tears, and falls in with a group of wild gypsies.

“The young girl pursues him and battles for his heart with a gypsy beauty. Realising what he had given up, he returns to his apartment in Paris, into the forgiving arms of his sweetheart.”

Contemporary dance featuring Balletboyz will also feature in Birmingham on Monday when Balletboyz reach the New Alexandra Theatre. The troupe features Adam, Anthony, Ed, Leon, Luke, Matt, Miguel and Taylor, eight remarkable dancers,handpicked from open auditions.

Their explosive show will feature exhilarating dance, interspersed with the company’s trademark use of film and behind-the-scenes footage.

A spokesman for Balletboyz said their programme, called The Talent, would feature four works – a mesmerising re-working of Russell Maliphant’s Torsion, Paul Roberts’ haunting Alpha plus two brand new works created for these dancers.

The spokesman said: “BalletBoyz is one of the most original and innovative forces in modern dance. Led by former Royal Ballet lead dancers Michael Nunn and William Trevitt, the company thrills audiences and critics the world over with its distinctive style, blending spectacular dance with stunning music and film.

“With The Talent, they pass the baton to a new generation of dancers in an entertaining evening of energy, grace and sheer talent.”

Choreographer Paul Roberts has worked with such performers as Girls Aloud, Pixie Lott and Robbie Williams, and appeared in the award-winning Balletboyz: The Rite of Spring.

Tickets are available from www.brb.org.uk, www.birminghamhippodrometickets.com, www.balletboyz.com or www.atgtickets.com

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