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Monotones I and II / The Two Pigeons

The Royal Ballet

Ashton’s sublime modernist ballet is a counterpoint to this much-anticipated revival of his charming comic romance.

Most recent performance

There are currently no scheduled performances of Monotones I and II / The Two Pigeons. It was last on stage 18 November—5 December 2015 as part of the Autumn 2015/16 season.


Frederick Ashton, Founder Choreographer of The Royal Ballet, defined the English style. In this double programme the Company celebrates Ashton and his legacy in two iconic works. Ashton originally created Monotones (1965) as a gala piece – an unearthly pas de trois danced to Debussy’s orchestration of Satie’s haunting Trois Gymnopédies. The following year he created a complementary pas de trois, much more earthbound, to precede the original piece, this time using Satie’s Trois Gnossiennes. The resulting diptych is a startling work of breathtaking clarity and modernism.

The Two Pigeons (1962) is a quintessential Ashton ballet. Through this story of a wayward young man blind to the values of what is right in front him, Ashton explores the nature of love in one of his most charming, elegant and moving works.

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

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