La Bayadére: Stunning on stage
Jessica Fyfe. Photography Lynette Wills

La Bayadére: Stunning on stage

The explosive technique, fever-hot drama and delicate beauty of La Bayadére has captured Melbourne’s heart. The Australian says that Stanton Welch’s version of the ballet “makes a worthy contribution to The Australian Ballet’s repertoire and reveals a company at the peak of its dance powers.” The Herald Sun says of the Kingdom of the Shades scene, “It is ensemble work of the highest order – a ballerina’s dream and an audience’s delight.” The Age adds, “the corps de ballet handle the challenging parade of arabesques beautifully.”

Don’t miss it! Tickets are selling fast.

Brett Chynoweth. Photography Lynette Wills

Brett Chynoweth. Photography Lynette Wills

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1 September 2014

The nutcracker doll: a history
The Australian Ballet's Nutcracker takes a breather outside our Melbourne HQ

The nutcracker doll: a history

Before the Nutcracker is transformed into a charming prince, he’s something of an ugly duckling. That grimace, those staring eyes. Those teeth! Could there be a uglier harbinger of Christmas than a nutcracker doll?

Well, yes. These days a visit inside a Christmas shop can reveal a veritable cave of saucer-eyed elves, dazed plastic angels and Santas that look like they’ve had one eggnog too many. Yet, within the modern pantheon of Christmas critterines, the traditional Nutcracker is unique. Resplendent in his uniform, he is neither Christian missive nor a meddler from our pagan past. So how did this awkward-looking, über-practical piece of German hardware become an icon of our Western yuletide celebrations? (more…)

29 August 2014

La Bayadére: in the studio
Madeleine Eastoe and Daniel Gaudiello. Photography Lynette Wills

La Bayadére: in the studio

Nikiya comes to Solor as a ghost in a vision, and they seal their love beyond the grave in a delicate, yearning pas de deux. Here’s a glimpse of this sublime La Bayadére moment in rehearsal.

La Bayadére opens tomorrow in Melbourne – hurry to get your tickets!

Madeleine Eastoe and Daniel Gaudiello. Photography Lynette Wills

Madeleine Eastoe and Daniel Gaudiello. Photography Lynette Wills

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27 August 2014

Karen Nanasca – Nailed it
Coryphée Karen Nanasca shows off her La Bayadère costume inspired nails.

Karen Nanasca – Nailed it

As we prepare our glammest outfits for the La Bayadère opening night, we thought we’d share a fashion trend straight from The Australian Ballet dance studios. Coryphée Karen Nanasca has started a trend – matching your nail polish with your leotard. It’s not just Karen who has been styling her rehearsal outfits. Dancers Ingrid Gow, Benedicte Bemet, Rina Nemoto and Sarah Thompson have all taken up the trend. Karen’s Instagram is full of gorgeous photos of dancers and their artfully matched nails, all captured with the hash tag #nailedit.

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Rehearsing La Bayadère
Artists of The Australian Ballet. Photography Lynette Wills

Rehearsing La Bayadère

The drama, the love story, the beauty, the harem pants, the tutus! The action-packed splendour of La Bayadère is taking shape in our studios.

Get your tickets for La Bayadère – it opens in Melbourne next Thursday 28 August!

Jessica Fyfe. Photography Lynette Wills

Jessica Fyfe. Photography Lynette Wills

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22 August 2014

La Bayadère: Making the snakes
Choreographer Stanton Welch, John-Paul Idaszak and AboutFace's python.

La Bayadère: Making the snakes

A deadly snake plays a key role in La Bayadère, hissing from its basket to bite Nikiya, the beautiful rival of the villainess Gamzatti. Houston Ballet uses live snakes when they dance Stanton Welch’s production of the ballet, but that’s a no-go on Australian stages. Much as we love a live snake (the non-venomous kind, of course!) there are advantages to using puppets – apparently, the live ones don’t always feel like performing!

We are fortunate enough to have our La Bayadère snakes made by the talented folk at AboutFace, who were behind such pieces of alchemy as the pelicans for Sydney Theatre Company’s Storm Boy and the dogs in the Hairy Mclary stage show. AboutFace’s Annie Forbes and Tim Denton stopped off for a chat on their way to deliver the snakes to our wardrobe department. (more…)

21 August 2014