Media
26.3.2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Hong Kong Ballet’s Season Finale
Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+

Including The Hong Kong Première of Alexei Ratmansky’s
Le Carnaval des Animaux
Plus Guest Appearances by 5 International Stars
A Le French May 2015 Programme
Tickets on Sale 29th March



[Hong Kong – 26th March 2015] As the curtain falls on The Hong Kong Ballet’s 2014/15 season, the company presents Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+, a fantastic mixed bill production featuring 5 international guest stars, the Hong Kong première of renowned choreographer Alexei Ratmansky’s Le Carnaval des Animaux, as well as two other world premières by international dancer and choreographer Edwaard Liang and The Hong Kong Ballet’s Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu. Four highly anticipated performances will be held from 29th to 31st May 2015 (Friday to Sunday), at the Grand Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre. A Le French May Arts Festival 2015 programme, Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+ is one breathtaking finale you do not want to miss! Box office will open on 29th March at URBTIX.

The Hong Kong première of Alexei Ratmansky’s charming and fun one-act ballet Le Carnaval des Animaux (The Carnival of the Animals) is certainly one of the focal points. Other highlights from the programme include: the world première of Bolero, choreographed by the company’s most talented choreographers, Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu, an insightful new piece set to Maurice Ravel’s music of the same title; a guest appearance by the company’s newly appointed Guest Principal Dancer, Jurgita Dronina (Principal Dancer, Dutch National Ballet), who will perform in the Grand Pas Classique from Marius Petipa’s Paquita; a new work choreographed and performed by Edwaard Liang (Artistic Director of BalletMet) with the company’s longstanding Guest Principal Dancer, Tan Yuan Yuan; and the pas de deux from Angelin Preljocaj’sbeautiful and moving masterpiece, Le Parc, performed by Alice Renavand (Etoile, Paris Opera Ballet) and Florian Magnenet (Principal Dancer, Paris Opera Ballet). Hong Kong’s audiences will enjoy this authentic French experience by the renowned couple from the prestigious Paris Opera Ballet.

Currently Artist in Residence of American Ballet Theatre and former Artistic Director of the Bolshoi Ballet (2004-2009), Alexei Ratmansky will appear in a Meet-the-Artist session on 30th March 2015 (Mon) from 7:30pm to 8:45pm at the Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre, to talk about his life as a dancer, choreographer, director and artist. Hosted by The Hong Kong Ballet’s Director of Artistic Planning & Touring, Joseph Morrissey, audiences will also get the chance to observe Ratmansky rehearse a short section from Le Carnaval des Animaux.

About Paquita

Choreography: Marius Petipa
Music: Ludwig Minkus
Costume Design: Harvy Santos
Original Lighting Design: Wayne Wong
Lighting Design: Alice Kwong

Kicking off the programme will be the Grand Pas Classique from Marius Petipa’s elegant classical ballet Paquita. Petipa is often cited as ‘the father of classical ballet’ and his Paquita is the first ballet he staged for the Mariinsky Theatre in St Petersburg, Russia. The Grand Pas Classique is richly adorned with numerous solos for the ballerinas while offering audiences a presentation rich in classical ballet history.



About Bolero (World Première)

Choreography: Yuh Egami & Ricky Hu
Music: Maurice Ravel
Set Design: Siu Wai Man
Costume Design: Bridget Steis
Props: Aya Mok
Lighting Design: Alice Kwong

Revealing the end at the beginning, Bolero then unveils the chain of events that give rise to the ending. The Hong Kong Ballet’s dancers, and most talented choreographers, Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu chose theatrical technique to deliver a story of the inner demons of the lead female dancer who personifies the struggle that is all too often caused by the pressures of today’s world. Entering the blurred, almost non-existent, space between light and shadow, between stability and instability, this is a deep and insightful piece. Set to Maurice Ravel’s famous orchestral piece of the same name, the brilliance of Bolero lies not only in the structure of the choreography and the music, but also in the masterful costume and set designs, all of which engage the emotions and force us to reflect on modern society and how it serves as a catalyst for anguish and despair in so many.

About Le Carnaval des Animaux (Hong Kong Première)

Choreography: Alexei Ratmansky (The Dying Swan after Mikhail Fokine)
Assistant to the Choreographer: Betsy Erickson
Music: Camille Saint-Saëns
Set and Costume Design: Sandra Woodall
Original Lighting Design: Kevin Connaughton
Re-lighting: Alice Kwong

The Hong Kong première of this charming and fun one-act ballet by internationally acclaimed choreographer Alexei Ratmansky, Le Carnaval des Animaux brings a whimsical menagerie of animals to life. Enjoy as the dancers enact animals including elephants, jellyfish and lions while combining these movements with an impressive classical ballet technique. An exciting and sweet score by Camille Saint-Saëns, divided into 14 movements, completes this ballet.



Jurgita Dronina
Guest Principal Dancer of The Hong Kong Ballet
Principal Dancer of Dutch National Ballet

Born in Saratov, Russia, Jurgita Dronina joined the Royal Swedish Ballet in 2005, becoming a Soloist in 2007, and Principal Dancer in 2009. In 2010, Ted Brandsen offered her a contract with the Dutch National Ballet. In 2011, her performance with Cédric Ygnace in Balanchine's Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux was widely acclaimed. Among many other prominent roles, Jurgita has danced in Kenneth MacMillan’s and Rudi van Dantzig’s Romeo & Juliet; Rudi van Dantzig’s Swan Lake; Alexei Ratmansky’s Don Quixote, On The Dnieper and Firebird; Pär Isberg’s Hunchback of Notre-Dame and The Nutcracker; George Balanchine’s Tschaikovsky pas de deux, Serenade, Symphony in C and Jewels. She has performed as a guest artist with many notable Ballet companies worldwide. In addition to numerous grants, Jurgita has received many notable awards, including Awards in the International Ballet Festival “Dance Open” in St. Petersburg in 2010, 2011 and 2013, and the Alexandra Radius Prize in 2014 (Outstanding dancer of the year). Jurgita Dronina joined The Hong Kong Ballet as Guest Principal Dancer in 2015.

Edwaard Liang
Artistic Director of BalletMet

Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Liang studied at the School of American Ballet before joining New York City Ballet in 1993. That same year, he was a medal winner at the Prix de Lausanne International Ballet Competition and won the Mae L. Wien Award. He was promoted to Soloist in 1998 and joined the Tony Award winning Broadway cast of Fosse in 2001. In 2002, Liang was invited by Jiří Kylián to become a member of the acclaimed Nederlands Dans Theater 1 (NDT1). During his time with NDT 1, Liang discovered his passion for choreography. He has since created works for ballet companies worldwide including Bolshoi Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Kirov Ballet, New York City Ballet, Shanghai Ballet and Singapore Dance Theatre. He has won numerous awards for his choreography including the 2006 National Choreographic Competition of Hubbard Street 2. He was named Artistic Director of BalletMet in 2013.

Florian Magnenet
Principal Dancer of Paris Opera Ballet

Born in France, Florian Magnenet graduated from the Paris Opera Ballet School in 1999 and was engaged in the Corps de Ballet that same year. His prizes include Prix Carpeaux in 2003 and Prix AROP in 2005. In 2002, he was promoted to Coryphée; in 2004, to Soloist; and in 2010, to Principal Dancer. His repertoire includes, Balanchine’s Diamants, Apollo and Les Quatre tempéraments; J.G. Bart’s La Source; Béjart’s L’Oiseau de feu; Cranko’s Onéguine; Lifar’s Suite en blanc; MacMillan’s L’Histoire de Manon; Martinez’ Les Enfants du paradis; Neumeier’s Sylvia, Troisième symphonie de Gustav Mahler and La Dame aux camélias; Nureyev’s The Sleeping Beauty, Cendrillon, Roméo et Juliette and La Bayadère; Preljocaj’s Le Parc and Robbins’ En Sol.

Alice Renavand
Étoile of Paris Opera Ballet

Born in France, Alice Renavand graduated from the Paris Opera Ballet School in 1997 and was engaged in the Corps de Ballet that same year. In 2004, she was promoted to Coryphée and in 2005, to Soloist. She was awarded the AROP Prize in 2008 and was promoted to Principal Dancer in 2012. During her time as Principal Dancer, Alice danced many title roles including Effie in Lacotte’s La Sylphide (after Taglioni), The Mistress of Lescaut in MacMillan’s Manon, Kitri in Nureyev’s Don Quixote. In 2013 she was named “Étoile” after performing Angelin Preljocaj’s Le Parc. Alice’s repertoire includes Preljocaj’s Le Songe de Médée, Siddharta and Le Parc;Bausch’s The Rite of Spring and Orpheus and Eurydice; Ek’s The House of Bernarda and Apartment; Balanchine's Agon; Kylián’s Kaguyahime, Bella Figura and Doux mensonges; and Ratmansky’s Psyché.

Tan Yuan Yuan
Guest Principal Dancer of The Hong Kong Ballet
Principal Dancer of San Francisco Ballet

Born in Shanghai, China, Tan Yuan Yuan trained at Shanghai Dancing School and Stuttgart’s John Cranko School. She joined San Francisco Ballet as a Soloist in 1995 and was promoted to Principal Dancer in 1997. Tan has danced major roles in Tomasson’s Giselle; Nutcracker; Romeo & Juliet; The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake; as well as lead roles in Tomasson/Possokhov’s Don Quixote; Cranko’s Onegin; and Lubovitch’s Othello. Tan has created many roles in numerous productions including, but not limited to, Tomasson’s 7 for Eight, Caprice, Chi-Lin, The Fifth Seasonand Silver Ladders; Balanchine’s Agon, Apollo, Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet, Concerto Barocco, Diamonds and more. A frequent guest artist, Tan has performed globally and has received many notable awards. Named one of Asia's Heroes by Time magazine in 2004, Tan Yuan Yuan joined The Hong Kong Ballet as Guest Principal Dancer in 2008.

Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+

Performance Details

29th May 2015 (Fri) 7:30pm
30th May 2015 (Sat) 2:30pm & 7:30pm
31st May 2015 (Sun) 2:30pm

4 performances

Grand Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre
HK$1,000 (VIP ticket) $680 $480 $280 $140
Tickets available at URBTIX from 29th March 2015

Suitable for ages 6 and above

Ticketing Enquiries: 3761 6661
Credit Card Booking: 2111 5999
Internet Booking: www.urbtix.hk
Programme Enquiries: 2105 9724

Discounts 
50% offFull-time students, senior citizens, people with disabilities (Limited tickets for students and senior citizens available on a first-come, first-served basis. This discount cannot be used in conjunction with other discounts.)
15% offFriends of The Hong Kong Ballet
10% off
(First two tickets)
Members of Chung Ying Theatre’s Energy Fun Club plus, Zuni's Friends, CCDC Dance Generation Premium members, HKPO Club Bravo members, Friends of HKCO and Friends of HKDC
Group Booking10% off for every purchase of 10-19 tickets at regular price, 15% off for 20-40 tickets

Patrons can enjoy only one of the above discounts for each purchase.

Programme Plus!

Meet-the-Artist: Alexei Ratmansky
30th March 2015 (Mon) 7:30pm-8:45pm
Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Alexei Ratmansky is in town working with The Hong Kong Ballet’s dancers in preparation for the city’s première of his charming and fun one-act ballet, Le Carnaval des Animaux (The Carnival of the Animals). Alexei will talk about his life as a dancer, choreographer, director and artist in the meet-the-artist session. Hosted by The Hong Kong Ballet’s Director of Artistic Planning & Touring, Joseph Morrissey, audiences will also get the chance to observe Ratmansky rehearse a short section from Le Carnaval des Animaux.

Free admission. Conducted in English. Suitable for ages 6 and above. Limited capacity, advance registration required.

Preview of Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+
19th May 2015 (Tue) 7:30pm-8:45pm
Studio Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Come learn more about this exciting programme featuring excerpts from Paquita, Marius Petipa’s ballet which premièred way back in 1847. In contrast, you will learn details about the world première of Bolero, set to Maurice Ravel’s famous orchestral piece of the same name. Created by Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu, two of The Hong Kong Ballet’s dancers, and most talented choreographers, this will be a memorable début for the Company, one you will want to hear all about. Rounding out the evening, take a closer look into another highlight of the programme, Le Carnaval des Animaux by famed choreographer Alexei Ratmansky. With its exciting and sweet score by Camille Saint-Saëns, this ballet features dancers enacting animals such as elephants, jellyfish and lions combined with an impressive classical ballet technique. Take advantage of this insightful opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes understanding of the highlights of this programme.

Free admission. Conducted in English. Suitable for ages 6 and above. Limited capacity, advance registration required.

Pre-performance Talk
29th May 2015 (Fri) 6:50pm
Level 2 Foyer, Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Stop by the second floor lobby to get a deeper insight into this evening’s programme. Learn more about Paquita, Marius Petipa’s ballet, first staged in Russia way back in 1847. Also learn about the world première of Bolero created by Yuh Egami and Ricky Hu, two of The Hong Kong Ballet’s dancers, and most talented choreographers. Set to Maurice Ravel’s famous orchestral piece of the same name, Bolero is set to be a memorable début for the Company. Rounding out the talk, discover the secrets behind Alexei Ratmansky’s Le Carnaval des Animaux. Complementing this event will be an appearance from artistic members involved in the production. Don’t miss this chance to take a closer look at these programme highlights before it begins.

The programme is approximately 20 minutes long. Free admission with Paquita.Bolero.Carnival+ tickets. Conducted in English with Cantonese translation.

Enquiries
2105 9743 | education@hkballet.com


Champagne  Partner
Perrier-Jouet
Make-Up Partner
M.A.C.
Le French May
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About Hong Kong Ballet

One of the premier classical ballet companies in Asia, The Hong Kong Ballet is becoming internationally recognised as a world-class institution that represents Hong Kong’s unique character. Since 1979 the Company has evolved into a vibrant performing arts organisation with accomplished dancers and a strong repertoire composed of a range of stunning, technically challenging productions, led by Artistic Director Madeleine Onne. www.hkballet.com 

For further information, please contact:
Tiphanie Chan

Senior Marketing Manager
T: 2105 9716
M: 9197 1223
tiphanie_chan@hkballet.com



DOWNLOAD PRESS PHOTOS

[Press Ctrl and click on the photo to download full image]
Li Jia-bo as LionZhang Si Yuan as Jelly FishLiu Yu-yao as Elephant
Li Jia-bo as Lion
Photo:
Cheung Chi Wai
Le Carnaval des Animaux costume courtesy of San Francisco Ballet
Zhang Si Yuan as Jelly Fish
Photo:
Cheung Chi Wai
Le Carnaval des Animaux costume courtesy of San Francisco Ballet
Liu Yu-yao as Elephant
Photo:
Cheung Chi Wai
Le Carnaval des Animaux costume courtesy of San Francisco Ballet.Ballet
Jurgita DroninaEdwaard LiangFlorian Magnenet
Jurgita Dronina
Photo:
Serguei Endinian
Edwaard Liang
Photo:
Chiun-Kai Shih
Florian Magnenet
Alice RenavandTan Yuan Yuan 
Alice Renavand Tan Yuan Yuan
Photo:
Chris Hardy