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New season at the Paris Opéra Ballet

Posted on March 13, 2019

The Paris Opéra Ballet has announced its new 2019/20 season, continuing its 350th anniversary celebrations this year with new productions and much-loved classics.

Among the new works is At the Hawk’s Well: a collaboration between Japanese visual artist Hiroshi Sugimoto, invited for the first time to the Paris Opéra, and choreographer Alessio Silvestrin, which features dancers of the company.

The new production will feature on a double bill, with Blake Works I, William Forsythe’s latest piece created for the Paris Opéra Ballet, which is set to a selection of songs by the composer James Blake. Previews will run from September 19, with opening night on September 22 and dates running through to October 15.

October also sees acclaimed choreographer Crystal Pite reunite with the dancers of the Paris Opéra for a new work comprising a series of 60-minute performances divided into as many choreographed sequences. With music by Owen Benton, set design by Jay Gower Taylor, costumes by Nancy Bryant and lighting design by Tom Visser, the work will run at the Palais Garnier from October 25 to November 23.

In 2020, Alan Lucien Øyen, choreographer and artist in residence with the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet, has been invited for the first time to choreograph for the Paris Opéra Ballet. Combining text and movement, the choreographer follows in the footsteps of the Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch, which commissioned a piece from him in 2018. The new work, which promises his usual sense of drama and theatre, will run from April 11, 2020 until May 18, 2020.

Created in 1978 for The Royal Ballet, Kenneth MacMillan’s Mayerling makes its debut in the Paris Opéra Ballet repertoire on May 12, 2020, running until May 30. The three-act work delves into the family secrets and political intrigues of the Habsburg monarchy during the reign of Emperor Franz Joseph.

MacMillan’s theatrical production focuses on the tragic story of Crown Prince Rudolf who commits suicide with his mistress Mary Vetsera at the hunting lodge at Mayerling. To the music of Franz Liszt, the choreography translates the fraught emotions of the characters.

Returning to the repertoire this season are Rudolf Nureyev’s staging of Raymonda, from December 2 to 31, 2019; Patrice Bart and Eugene Polyakov’s version of Giselle, from January 31, 2020 to February 15, 2020; and Pierre Lacotte’s recreation of the original version of Coppélia performed by pupils of the Paris Opéra Ballet School.

For further details of the new season and to book tickets, click here.

Main image: The Palais Garnier. Photograph by Jean-Pierre Delagarde

Nicola Rayner was editor of Dance Today from 2010 to 2015. She has written for a number of publications including The Guardian, The Independent and Time Out Buenos Aires, where she cut her teeth as a dance journalist working on the tango section. Today she continues to dance everything from ballroom to breakdance, with varying degrees of success. Her debut novel, The Girl Before You, is out in May 2019.

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