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Background

British choreographer Kenneth MacMillan transformed ballet, through an extraordinary career that expanded the boundaries of the art form. To mark the 25th anniversary of his death The Royal Ballet celebrates his remarkable work with three mixed programmes that bring together the UK’s leading ballet companies. In the third and last of these programmes, three ballets originally created for The Royal Ballet show MacMillan’s range and versatility.

Northern Ballet dances Gloria – MacMillan’s evocative tribute to the fallen of World War I, inspired by Vera Brittain’s Testament of Youth and the wartime experiences of his father. Poulenc’s wonderful Gloria in G major provides the score. The Royal Ballet dances The Judas Tree, MacMillan’s final ballet. It explores with unflinching determination the consequences of violence and our own complicity in a compromised world. Elite Syncopations is a complete change of tack: sexy, funny and thrilling with the rhythm of its ragtime score, danced here by Birmingham Royal Ballet, Northern Ballet, The Royal Ballet and Scottish Ballet in a joyous finale to the celebration.