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A Month in the Country

Ashton captures the mood of Turgenev's play through exquisite dance in this poignant tale of unrequited love.

Most recent performance

There are currently no scheduled performances of A Month in the Country. It was last on stage 18 October—12 November 2014.

The Story

The arrival of Beliaev, a young tutor, in the country home of a Russian family sends ripples through the household. For Natalia, an unfulfilled but passionate housewife, it stirs up powerful emotions.

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A Month in the Country had its premiere in 1976 and was one of the last works Frederick Ashton made for The Royal Ballet. It is based on a play of the same name by Ivan Turgenev and set to stirring music by Fryderyk Chopin, arranged by John Lanchbery. The ballet showcases Ashton’s genius for conveying complex narrative through choreography: a minutely observed domestic drama is played out through a series of nuanced pas de deux.

The production is set in 1850 – the year Turgenev’s play was written. Julia Trevelyan Oman's authentic designs recreate the staid elegance of a Russian country home, with its gold chandeliers and ornate furniture. Natalia longs to escape this stifling world and the restrictions imposed by her social class and position. Her final, poignant pas de deux with Beliaev is one of the most beautiful and passionate that Ashton ever choreographed.

Frederick Ashton created more than one hundred works during his lifetime (1904–88). For further information, please visit

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On Wikipedia

A Month in the Country is a narrative ballet created in 1976 with choreography by Frederick Ashton, to the music of Frédéric Chopin (three works for piano and orchestra) arranged by John Lanchbery. It is based on the play by Ivan Turgenev of the same name, and lasts for about 40 minutes.

Read the complete A Month in the Country (ballet) article on Wikipedia, available under a Creative Commons license.