Shakespeare’s great love story returns in May with the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s (RNZB) passionate re-telling of Romeo & Juliet touring to eight venues across the motu.
With mesmerising choreography by Andrea Schermoly (Stand to Reason, Within Without) and exquisite sets and costumes by Academy Award-winning designer James Acheson (The Last Emperor, Dangerous Liaisons), the RNZB’s Romeo & Juliet, in association with Avis, brings all the splendour and seduction of Renaissance Verona, the ferocity of two families in battle, and the heart-breakingly beautiful but ultimately tragic romance of literature’s famous star-crossed lovers.
The colour and vitality of the marketplace in which bawdy laughter turns to horror in the blink of an eye; the grandeur of the Capulet palazzo in which love blooms; and the intimacy of balcony, bedroom and tomb are all swept up in Prokofiev’s exhilarating, sensuous score.
Romeo & Juliet offers the RNZB’s dancers the chance to give, and audiences to experience, the performance of a lifetime.
Choreographer Andrea Schermoly says, “Romeo & Juliet is one of the ultimate romantic tragedies and a choreographic dream to embark on. It incorporates intense romance alongside ferocious family drama, luxurious glamour and heart wrenching tragedy. Creating this work with the RNZB is a career highlight for me. I’m thankful for this inspiring creative team and it is an honour to be working with James Acheson.”
Lee Marshall, General Manager of Avis New Zealand, says, “This is a special partnership for us, and we are delighted to start our journey together with such a memorable ballet. We share the RNZB’s commitment to excellence in everything we do and support the company’s exceptional dancers, who always inspire audiences with their talent, discipline and skill.”
The RNZB’s Romeo & Juliet, in association with Avis New Zealand, tours to Wellington, Auckland, Dunedin, Christchurch, Palmerston North and Napier from 4 May. Principal Conductor Hamish McKeich will conduct the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (Wellington), the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, with a recording by Orchestra Wellington accompanying all other performances.
Following the national tour, ballet lovers throughout Australasia will have the opportunity to purchase and view a specially made online broadcast version of Romeo & Juliet, filmed during the Wellington season and capturing all the excitement of the live performance. Viewing will be available from 16 June to 6 July.