Giselle ballet set for Rotorua

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ELEGANT: Royal New Zealand Ballet dancer Lucy Green as Giselle in Giselle. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
ELEGANT: Royal New Zealand Ballet dancer Lucy Green as Giselle in Giselle. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

The Royal New Zealand Ballet's internationally acclaimed classic production of Giselle will be brought to Rotorua in September.

It is created in Wellington by ballet superstars Ethan Stiefel and Johan Kobborg, and will be going on a seven-centre tour throughout August and September.

Giselle will be in Rotorua on Tuesday September 6 at the Civic Theatre at 7.30pm.

The quintessential Romantic ballet has become a signature work for the Royal New Zealand Ballet after sell-out performances in New Zealand in 2012, followed by subsequent tours to China (April 2013), the USA (January 2014), the United Kingdom and Italy (November 2015).

It has also been adapted into a feature film by New Zealand director Toa Fraser.

Ethan Stiefel, the Royal New Zealand Ballet's former artistic director and co-choreographer of Giselle, will return to Wellington from New York to put the finishing touches on the production ahead of its opening on August 11.

Since leaving the Royal New Zealand Ballet at the end of 2014, Mr Stiefel has been working with leading international ballet companies, and been involved in several stage and television projects.

These include Flesh and Bone by the writers of Breaking Bad and Center Stage: On Pointe, reprising his role in the popular 2000 film Center Stage.

"I'm delighted to return to Wellington to work once more in the Royal New Zealand Ballet studios on this production," said Mr Stiefel

"Giselle is one of ballet's great stories and we feel very honoured to have created a version that has resonated with international audiences and critics alike."

Royal New Zealand Ballet's artistic director Francesco Ventriglia has invited two guest artists to dance the leading male role of Albrecht for this season.

This includes much-loved former Royal New Zealand Ballet dancer Qi Huan, who danced the role with the company until his departure in 2014 to take up his current role as full-time classical tutor at the New Zealand School of Dance, and former principal dancer with The Australian Ballet Daniel Gaudiello.

Qi Huan will partner Lucy Green, who will dance the title role of Giselle, one of the most demanding and dramatic in the classical ballet repertoire, while Daniel Gaudiello will partner Mayu Tanigaito.

Both Green and Tanigaito received widespread critical acclaim for their performances in the ballet in the United Kingdom and Italy.

Giselle includes some of the most beautiful and iconic scenes in all ballet repertory and is renowned for its exquisite pointe work in Act 2, which is set in a ghostly moonlit forest haunted by the white-clad 'Wilis'.

First staged in Paris in 1841, Giselle is one of the oldest surviving ballets still in the international repertory.

The music by Adolphe Adam (1803-1856) is one of the first full-length ballet scores ever to be composed.

For the Royal New Zealand Ballet's production the lyrical score will be performed live by orchestras in the four main centres, with a specially recorded version in all other centres.

Leading conductor Marc Taddei will conduct Orchestra Wellington, the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra and Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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