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Ballet at its most Bewitching

Love Conquers All – Even Death: Ballet at its most Bewitching

RNZ Ballet Artist Alana Baird in the Tower season of Giselle – photo Ross Brown

Moonlit and magical, the Royal New Zealand Ballet’s TOWER Season of Giselle is the quintessential Romantic ballet. It is a story of love and betrayal, and ultimately forgiveness, as poignant today as it was at the first performance in 1841.

In a superbly atmospheric production, Artistic Director Gary Harris fulfils a love affair he has had with the ballet since he was a teenager. For the first time in his 35 year career he restages this masterpiece, sparing nothing to capture the emotional depth and drama of this enduring classic.

“I’m drawing on everything I’ve ever learned. It’s important for dancers to go back to their roots and really understand this work,” says Harris.

“For dancers and dance lovers alike, Giselle is an incredible gift from the past.”

RNZ Ballet Artist Alana Baird in the Tower season of Giselle – photo Ross Brown

Assisting Harris is New Zealand’s most accomplished Giselle, Sherilyn Kennedy, who danced the famous role as a principal dancer with the Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet in London.

“My focus is to bring this great ballet alive for the young dancers of the RNZB so they are able to impart to the audience this great tragic love story and find it rewarding to do.”

The RNZB first performed excerpts of Giselle in 1954 with additional choreography by the company’s founder, Poul Gnatt. Sara Neil restaged a full production in 1965, and productions have followed by Bryan Ashbridge (1973), Dorothea Ashbridge and Harry Haythorne (1981) and Ashley Killar (1993).

RNZ Ballet Artist Alana Baird in the Tower season of Giselle – photo Ross Brown



Choreography: Jean Coralli and Jules Perrot
Restaged by: Gary Harris
with the assistance of Sherilyn Kennedy
Composer: Adolphe Adam
Lighting Designer: Jon Buswell
Conductor: Kenneth Young


Wellington, Westpac St James Theatre
3-5 & 8-11 November
Featuring the Vector Wellington Orchestra

Invercargill, Civic Theatre
14 & 15 November

Dunedin, Regent Theatre
18 & 19 November
Featuring the Southern Sinfonia

Christchurch, Isaac Theatre Royal
22-25 November
Featuring the Christchurch Symphony

Palmerston North, Regent on Broadway
28 & 29 November
Featuring the Vector Wellington Orchestra

Napier, Napier Municipal Theatre
2 & 3 December

Auckland, Aotea Centre at THE EDGE®
6-10 December
Featuring the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra

Hamilton, Founders Theatre
13 & 14 December

In all venues other than Wellington, Dunedin, Christchurch, Palmerston North and Auckland, the company will perform to a recording by the Vector Wellington Orchestra.


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