The Australian Ballet will return to London with George Balanchine’s beloved ballet triptych ‘JEWELS’

The Australian Ballet has announced that the company will bring George Balanchine‘s triptych Jewels to the Royal Opera House in London from 2 to 6 August 2023, making it a highlight of the company’s Diamond Jubilee/60th anniversary celebrations.

The 2023 London Tour will be the first international tour for The Australian Ballet under the leadership of Artistic Director David Hallberg and marks the company’s return to international touring since 2019.

The season consists of five performances of Jewels and a one-off 60th Anniversary Celebration performance featuring some of the company’s signature repertoire. 

The rich tradition of The Australian Ballet performing in the UK began in 1965, with subsequent tours in 1973, 1976, 1988, 1992, 2005, 2008 and 2016. This will be the first time The Australian Ballet will tour Jewels internationally. Over 90 dancers, musicians, wardrobe, medical, technical, production and support staff will make up the touring party.

Considered a cornerstone of the repertoire, Jewels (1967) is a three-part full-evening ballet by the choreographer George Balanchine, inspired by a chance visit to the iconic Maison Van Cleef & Arpels on Fifth Avenue in New York. The opening Emeralds, set to the music of French composer Gabriel Fauré, embodies the mystery and romance associated with the 19th century Paris Opera Ballet. Rubies, accompanied by Stravinsky’s jazzy score, pays tribute to Balanchine’s adopted home New York, mingling Broadway with the burlesque. Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 3 is the backdrop to the glittering finale, Diamonds, a homage to the grand Mariinsky tradition that produced The Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker.

Jewels replaces Kunstkamer as previously announced.

The Australian Ballet’s London season closes on Sunday 6 August with a special one-off 60th Anniversary Gala. Curated by David Hallberg to display the strength and versatility of the company, the evening features repertoire spanning three centuries – from beloved classical pieces by Rudolf Nureyev and Yuri Possokhov to a company commission by Pam Tanowitz, alongside a rare chance to experience work by leading Australian choreographer Alice Topp. The full programme will be unveiled nearer the time.

The London tour will be supported by The Australian Ballet’s Principal Partner Telstra, Official Airline Partner Qantas and Media Partner Times Media Limited.

The performance of Jewels, a Balanchine® Ballet, is presented by arrangement with The George Balanchine Trust and has been produced in accordance with the Balanchine Style® and Balanchine Technique® Service standards established and provided by the Trust.

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