Russian Imperial Ballet presents

Swan Lake

June 21–24, 2007

ITR Auditorium


Nothing compares with Swan Lake – arguably the most loved of all classical ballets.

From its first incarnation in 1877 at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow to the many productions staged around the world today, this timeless story of a young man's love continues to capture audiences and inspire new generations of dancers and dance lovers.

During a hunting trip, Prince Siegfried falls in love with Odette who has been transformed by the evil Von Rothbart's spell into a swan by day, returning to her female form only at night by the lakeside. Siegfried's love can break the spell, because he has never loved before. But Von Rothbart's daughter Odile tricks Siegfried into declaring his love for her, and all seems lost. The evil is broken when Siegfried and Odette drown themselves in the lake and are united in death forever.

Spectacular ensembles and virtuosic solos are the signature of this grand ballet set to Pyotr Tchaikovsky's magnificent score. Swan Lake is a showcase for the art of ballet and for any company that presents it.

After its very first opening night, the music was considered 'undanceable'. More than a hundred years on, it is now the most recognised of all ballet music.

The version of the ballet most audiences are familiar with was staged in 1895. It featured choreography by the legendary Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, and commemorated the death of Tchaikovsky two years earlier.

New Zealand's most prolific choreographer, Russell Kerr, joins Artistic Director Gary Harris to restage this enduring masterpiece that stands alone as ballet's most intimate classical experience.

Choreography: Marius Petipa/ Lev Ivanov
Restaging: Russell Kerr/Gary Harris
Music: Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Design: Kristian Fredrikson