Boston Ballet begins its spring season with the Company premiere of George Balanchine’s Coppélia, one of the greatest comic ballets of all time. This premiere makes Boston Ballet the only American company outside of New York City Ballet to present this work. Coppélia will take the stage at The Boston Opera House April 8-18, 2010.
“Boston Ballet’s studios have been buzzing with preparations for Coppélia,” said Boston Ballet Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen. “I have wanted to present Balanchine’s version of this ballet for some time and it’s thrilling to see the ballet come together in the studios and with new and refurbished sets and costumes by our talented staff. Like our classic and beloved Nutcracker, Coppélia is beautiful in its simplicity, full of lively comedy, and also contains intricate dancing and musicality that audiences will truly appreciate. Coppélia is a wonderful chance for our audiences to see something new and experience the beauty of Balanchine’s full-length work.”
Coppelia, originally choreographed by Arthur St. Léon in 1870, is considered one of the greatest comedic ballets of the 19th century. The story, based upon the book by Charles Nuitter, after “Der Sandmann” by E.T.A. Hoffman, is a light-hearted comedy set in a country village. The work was later restaged by Petipa in 1884 and revised by Cecchetti in 1894. It wasn’t until 1974 that George Balanchine and Alexandra Danilova re-staged the production, retaining the storyline of Acts I and II with new choreography and creating an entirely new Act III. No one was better suited to revive this classic than choreographic master Balanchine and Danilova, who was considered the definitive Swanilda. Balanchine’s Act III, featuring more than 20 children, is the work’s defining section with a village wedding scene and a monumental grand finale. Boston Ballet’s upcoming production will feature students from Boston Ballet School. The original production debuted with New York City Ballet in 1974 at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center.
This charming and sentimental tale revolves around the life-size dancing doll created by Doctor Coppélius who becomes the source of love troubles for a village couple, Swanilda and Frantz. Léo Delibes score, called by The New York Times, “a classic of melody, orchestration, rhythm, and storytelling,” is at once lively and accessible. It is considered by some as the first symphonic ballet score and seems to hold the unique ability to illustrate and enhance the choreography.
Boston Ballet purchased sets and costumes from Pacific Northwest Ballet, refurbishing and rebuilding the entire production, as well as creating entirely new set elements and costuming under the direction of the Boston Ballet Production Department and Costume Shop. Judith Fugate is staging the ballet, with Garielle Whittle staging the children’s choreography, on behalf of The Balanchine Trust.
This production of Coppélia is funded in part by a generous grant from American Express.
Explore The Making of Coppélia:
2009-2010 Season Tickets
Spring season tickets are on sale now. All 2009-2010 tickets may be purchased through Boston Ballet by phone at 617.695.6955 or in person at the box office at 19 Clarendon Street, Boston, Mon–Fri, 9am-5pm, Sat, 11am-6pm (Sat hours Sept–May only), and performance days only on Sun, 11am – 4pm (or 6pm for Nutcracker) . Subscriptions and all tickets will be available for sales online 24 hours a day at www.bostonballet.org. Prices for season ballets start at $25. Discounted group tickets (10 or more for season ballets) are available by calling Boston Ballet’s Group Sales at 617.456.6343. Contact the Boston Ballet Box Office at 617.695.6955 or visit www.bostonballet.org for details.
About Boston Ballet
Since 1963, Boston Ballet has been one of the leading dance companies in the world on stage, in the studio and in the community. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen and Executive Director Barry Hughson, the Company maintains an internationally acclaimed repertoire and the largest ballet school in North America, Boston Ballet School.
Boston Ballet maintains a repertoire of classical, neo-classical and contemporary works, ranging from full-length story ballets to new works by some of today's finest choreographers. Boston Ballet's second company, Boston Ballet II, is comprised of pre-professional dancers who gain experience by performing with the Company and independently, presenting lecture-demonstrations and special programs to audiences throughout the Northeast.
Boston Ballet School, the official school of Boston Ballet, has a long-standing dedication to excellence and access and reaches more than 10,000 students ages 2-adult each year through Boston Ballet School classes, Summer Dance Workshop, Summer Dance Program, Citydance, Taking Steps, and Adaptive Dance. The wide array of dance programs are held at four studio locations in Boston, Newton, Norwell and Marblehead, as well as community centers and in Boston Public Schools.
Boston Ballet gratefully acknowledges the following institutional partners:
State Street Corporation, 2009 Presenting Sponsor, The Nutcracker
Massachusetts Cultural Council
National Endowment for the Arts
Boston Organ & Piano, Official Piano Supplier of Boston Ballet