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Royal Ballet to reopen Hull New Theatre

Posted on February 28, 2017

Hull New Theatre c Hull City CouncilEsteem Consortium e1488367139736

The Royal Ballet will reopen Hull New Theatre, which has had a £16 million transformation, as part of Hull UK City of Culture 2017.

On September 16, the company will perform a gala evening of dance, curated by its Hull-born director, Kevin O’Hare. The Royal Ballet will be joined by other artists from Hull, including Xander Parish, soloist with the Maryinsky Ballet, and Birmingham Royal Ballet principal Joseph Caley.

The Royal Ballet will also present a day of Swan Lake-inspired activities, with other events planned around the city. The gala opens Hull New Theatre’s autumn programme, and is part of Hull 2017’s Freedom season.

O’Hare is one of many dancers from Hull. The Skelton Hooper School of Dance, led by Vanessa Hooper, born in Hull and a former dancer with The Royal Ballet, has sent 24 pupils to The Royal Ballet School.

O’Hare said: “I am immensely proud of my roots in Hull, and what has been achieved so far in Hull’s year as UK City of Culture. For me, this opportunity to return to my home city, for the company to take to the stage in the magnificent setting of Hull’s refurbished New Theatre and to create new links with the young talent of Hull is unique and special for all of us.”

Booking will open soon. Tickets will be available from

Kevin O’Hare, photographed by Joe Plimmer


Zoë was born in Edinburgh, and saw her first dance performances at the Festival there. She is the dance critic of The Independent, and has also written for The Independent on Sunday, The Scotsman and Dancing Times. In 2002, she received her doctorate from the University of York for a thesis on “Nationhood and epic romance: Ariosto, Sidney, Spenser”. She is the author of The Royal Ballet: 75 Years and The Ballet Lover’s Companion.

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