Ballet Log

On this page you will find a brief note about the origin of individual ballets mentioned in my blog posts.

Royal Opera House Collections have embarked on an ambitious project to catalogue every performance at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, from 1732 to the present. Records are divided into three levels: work, production, and performance, providing a useful reference for those interested in historical ballet performances in Covent Garden, London.

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If you would like to know more about many of the ballets you may have seen or perhaps plan to see, in particular those performed by the Royal Ballet, I would recommend you obtain a printed or Kindle version of the Faber Pocket Guide to Ballet  by Deborah Bull and Luke Jennings – published 2004  ISBN-10: 0571207243

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INDEX : A-Z of ballets mentioned in my blog posts
Agon
Alice’s Adventures …
Antigone
Apollo
Carmen Suite
Concerto
Don Quixote
Façade
Firebird The
Games for Gods
In the Night
La Fête étrange
Las Hermanas
Mayerling
Noctambules
Nutcracker The
Prince of the Pagodas The
Rake’s Progress The
Raymonda
Requiem
Romeo and Juliet
Sleeping Beauty The
Swan Lake

Agon    One act. Choreography by Kenneth MacMillan, music by Igor Stravinsky. First performed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London by the Royal Ballet on 20 August 1958. World premiere production, choreographed by George Balanchine, performed at the City Center, New York on 1 Dec 1957. 

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland    Three act ballet. Choreography by Christopher Wheeldon with music by Joby Talbot. First performed as a two act ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London by the Royal Ballet on 28 February 2011. ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ is dedicated to Dame Ninette de Valois, founder of The Royal Ballet.

Antigone    One act. Choreography by John Cranko, freely based on the tragedy ‘Antigone’ by Sophocles. Music by Mikis Theodorakis. Designs by Rufino Tamayo.  First performed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, on 19 October 1959.

Apollo    One act ballet choreographed by George Balanchine, music by Igor Stravinsky. First Performed at the Théâtre Sarah Bernhardt, Paris 1928.

Carmen Suite    One act ballet written in 1967 by the Russian composer Rodion Shchedrin, based on a libretto and choreographed by Alberto Alonso. The music, arranged for strings and percussion, was taken from the opera Carmen by Georges Bizet. First performed in Moscow by the Bolshoi and concurrently by the Ballet Nacional de Cuba in the Great Theater of Havana in August 1967.

Concerto    One act abstract ballet, consisting of three movements. Choreographed in 1966 by Kenneth MacMillan for the Deutsche Oper Ballet. Music by Dmitri Shostakovich; Piano Concerto No. 2, opus 102. Original Designs by Jürgen Rose. First performed at the Städtische Opera, West Berlin in November 1966. Debuted at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London in October 1974.

Don Quixote    Three acts. Choreography by Marius Petipa, 1869, revised Petipa 1871, further revised Alexander Gorsky 1900.  Music by Ludwig Minkus. First  performed at the Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow, 1869. 

Façade    One act ballet freely adapted to music originally written as a setting to poems by Edith Sitwell. Choreography by Frederick Ashton,  music. various, [largely William Walton] First Performed: Camargo Society, Cambridge Theatre, London 26 April 1931. 

The Firebird    One act. Choreography by Mikhail Fokine,  music by Igor Stravinsky, designs by Alexander Golovine and Léon Bakst. First Performed at the Théâtre National de l’Opéra, Paris 1910. 

Games for Gods    An olympic diversion in one act. Choreography by Matthew Hart, assisted by Jane Burn. Music by Benjamin Britten Diversions for Piano Op 21. Designs by Francisco Rodriguez-Weil. First performed by The Royal Ballet School, at the Linbury Studio Theatre of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden on 6 July 2012 – [ROH Main Stage 15 July 2012] 

In the Night    One act ballet choreographed by New York City Ballet balletmaster Jerome Robbins to solo piano music of Chopin with costumes by Anthony Dowell and lighting by Jennifer Tipton. First performed at the New York State Theatre, Lincoln Center NY on 29 January 1970. 

La Fête étrange    One act. Choreography by Andrée Howard, suggested by an episode in the novel ‘Le Grand Meaulnes’ by Henri Alain-Fournier. Music by Gabriel Fauré. Designs by Ronald Crichton. World premiere on 23 May 1940 by the London Ballet, Arts Theatre, London. ROH, Royal Ballet premiere on 11 December 1958. 

Las Hermanas    One act narrative ballet. Created by Kenneth MacMillan in 1963. Liberetto based on Federico Lorca’s play ‘The House of Bernarda Alba’. Music byFrank Martin; Concerto for harpsichord and small orchestra. Original Design byNicholas Georgiadis. First performed by the Stuttgart Ballet in July 1963 at the Württembergische Staatstheater, Stuttgart. Debuted at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London in November 2012. 

Mayerling    Three acts. Choreography by Kenneth MacMillan, scenario by Gillian Freeman, music by Franz Liszt, designs by Nicholas Georgiadis. First  performed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, 1978. 

Noctambules    One act. Choreography by Kenneth MacMillan. Music Noctambules, Op. 30, composed by Humphrey Searle. First performed 1 March 1956 by Sadler’s Wells Ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London. 

The Nutcracker    Two acts. Choreography by Lev Ivanov, music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, libretto by Marius Petipa. First  performed at the Maryinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, 1892. 

The Prince of the Pagodas    Three acts. Choreography by John Cranko. Music commissioned from Benjamin Britten and titled ‘The Prince of the Pagodas, Op. 57’. The Ballet was dedicated to Imogen Holst and Ninette de Valois. First performed on 1 January 1957 by Sadler’s Wells Ballet at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London. In 1989 The Prince of the Pagodas was revived by Kenneth MacMillan in a new production. 

The Rake’s Progress   A short ballet based on the drawings of William Hogarth, with music by Gavin Gordon. Choreography by Ninette de Valois, costumes and set design by Rex Whistler. The ballet was first performed at the Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London, in 1935. The original costumes and scenery were destroyed in the Netherlands during the Second World War, while Sadler’s Wells were visiting that country.

Raymonda   Three acts. Choreography by Marius Petipa, music by Alexander Glazunov. First performed at the Maryinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, 1898. 

Requiem   One act ballet created by Kenneth MacMillan in 1976 as a tribute to his friend and fellow Choreographer John Cranko. Music by Gabriel Fauré; Requiem. Design by Yolanda Sonnabend. First performed by the Stuttgart Ballet in November 1976 at the Württembergische Staatstheater, Stuttgart. The Royal Ballet took it into its repertoire in 1983. 

Romeo and Juliet    Three acts. Choreography by Kenneth MacMillan, music by Sergei Prokofiev, designs by Nicholas Georgiadis. First performed at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London, 1965. 

The Sleeping Beauty    Three acts. Choreography by Marius Petipa, music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, libretto Petipa & Ivan Vsevolojsky. First performed at the Maryinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, 1890. 

Swan Lake    Four acts. Choreography by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Petipa-Ivanov version first performed at the Maryinsky Theatre, St Petersburg, 1895. 

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