Australian Ballet Announces 2022 Season

Australian Ballet Announces 2022 Season

Australian Ballet has announced their 2022 season with David Helberg entering his second year as artistic director. They begin their season with a festive gala featuring a stellar collection of all-time favourites; new commissions from Australian choreographers Lucas Jervies and Alice Topp; and the glittering golden finale of the ballet Raymonda. This summertime treat offers a relaxed, welcoming atmosphere and gives a new perspective on dance, including behind-the-scenes glimpses of the dancers preparing for their performance.

Highlights of the program include the Kingdom of the Shades scene, in which 24 ballerinas in white tutus process onto stage in majestic unison, the exuberant Grande Tarantella, modern classics from Kenneth MacMillan and Christopher Wheeldon and an excerpt from next year’s hot contemporary ticket I New Then. The Summertime Gala will take place from 17-19 February in Melbourne. Tickets begin at $40.

Next, Australian Ballet will present Anna Karenina from 25 February – 9 March in Melbourne and from 5 – 23 April in Sydney. Cinematic staging, elegant costumes and Yuri Possokhov’s sensual choreography illuminate the tragedy of Anna Karenina, whose desire brings about her ruin. Possokhov, formerly a principal dancer with Bolshoi Ballet and San Francisco Ballet and now a major international choreographer, does full justice to Tolstoy’s novel, distilling its central romances and conflicts into a fast-moving, immersive narrative. 

From 29 April – 14 May in Sydney and from 3-11 June in Melbourne, Australian Ballet enters a cabinet of curiosities with Kuntskamer. Never before has The Australian Ballet presented contemporary dance of this scale and ambition. Commissioned for the 60th anniversary of Nederlands Dans Theater, the world’s most celebrated contemporary company, and now presented for the first time outside of the Netherlands by The Australian Ballet, Kunstkamer is the joint creation of four choreographers: frequent collaborators Paul Lightfoot and Sol León; Marco Goecke; and the Canadian prodigy Crystal Pite. The choreography, moving from the intimacy and humour of solos and pas de deux to intricate waves of ensemble movement, references dance theatre traditions while exploring new frontiers of expression.

Enjoy a long-lost comedy from the creator of Swan Lake, Harlequinade from 17-25 June in Melbourne. A lively love story based on commedia dell’arte, Harlequinade was created in 1900 by Marius Petipa, who choreographed some of classical ballet’s most enduring works, including Swan Lake and The Sleeping Beauty. Working with the original notation of Petipa’s choreography, Alexei Ratmansky, former director of the Bolshoi Ballet and artist in residence at American Ballet Theatre, has produced a loving and humorous revival.

In Australia Ballet’s only Adelaide performance during 2022, relish Counterpointe from 8-13 July. Counterpointe pairs an excerpt from the elegant 19th-century classic Raymonda with the mesmerising complexity of Artifact Suite, by the radically inventive choreographer William Forsythe, and adds George Balanchine’s beloved Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux. Counterpointe gives us the extremes of ballet, in contrast and conversation.

Kick of spring with Instruments of Dance from 23 September – 1 October in Melbourne and 10-26 November in Sydney. In this contemporary triple bill, resident choreographers from three of the world’s top companies respond to scores from modern-day composers working in very different musical fields. Justin Peck, resident choreographer of New York City Ballet, has invigorated the company with his fresh take on classical technique. He makes his Australian debut with Everywhere We Go. Wayne McGregor’s all-male Obsidian Tear takes us to the shadowy depths of the planet – and the psyche. The third resident choreographer of the program is The Australian Ballet’s own, Alice Topp.

In the history of dance, there are only a handful of productions that translate Shakespeare’s story of tragic love into compelling ballet form. John Cranko’s majestic version is one of them. His Romeo and Juliet premiered in 1962, the year The Australian Ballet was founded, and generations of our dancers have grown up with the production and gone on to shine in its many dream roles. An artist who effortlessly fused dance and drama, Cranko richly evokes the grandeur of the Capulets’ ball, the fierce clashes of the rival families and the brief, luminous flare of young love. Romeo and Juliet is onstage from 7-18 October in Melbourne and 1-21 December in Sydney.

For more information about Australia Ballet’s 2022 season click here