21 February 2018 at 11.22am | 14 Comments
The Royal Ballet's production of Christopher Wheeldon's modern classic The Winter's Tale will be relayed live to cinemas around the world on 28 February 2018.
The ballet has become a firm audience favourite since its premiere in 2014.
To enhance your viewing experience, access our Winter's Tale Digital Programme for free using the promo code FREEWINTER, and enjoy a range of specially selected films, articles, pictures and features to bring you closer to the production.
Love, jealousy, loss and reconciliation drive this adaptation of Shakespeare's play, which has an unusual combination of dark drama and comedy.
Two Kings, once childhood friends, are reunited when Polixenes, King of Bohemia visits the court of Leontes, King of Sicilia. Leontes lives in blissful happiness with his wife Queen Hermione and their son. Polixenes leaves after staying for nine months, by which time Hermione is heavily pregnant. Leontes is thrown into an agony of suspicion: could his wife and his oldest friend have betrayed him?
Wheeldon's choreography is inspired by the lyricism of Shakespeare's poetry. 'I've always wanted to make a Shakespeare ballet', he says, 'and I think the biggest challenge for any choreographer tackling Shakespeare is to find a way to infuse that poetry into the movement and not just use the plot line'. He has streamlined the plot to focus on the main characters and themes, saying 'it's those moments of high drama that work very well for dance'.
A treat for Royal Ballet fans, The Winter's Tale offers six major roles - and therefore opportunities to see six of the Company's stars at length.
The live cinema relay will see Lauren Cuthbertson dance the role of Hermione, while Ryoichi Hirano will dance the role of King Leontes. Polixenes will be performed by Matthew Ball and Paulina by Laura Morera. Young lovers Perdita and Florizel will be danced by Sarah Lamb and Vadim Muntagirov, respectively.
This production reunites the creative team behind Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, with designs by Bob Crowley and music by Joby Talbot. Crowley's designs for The Winter's Tale vividly depict the contrasting worlds explored in the ballet. Dreary, black costumes in the Sicilian court contrast vibrant sets and costumes in the light-filled, pastoral Bohemia.
Review and share your thoughts
We'd love to hear your thoughts via social media before the performance, during the intervals and afterwards. Share your comments on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with #ROHtale and, as ever, we'll share a selection during the intervals.
The Winter's Tale will be broadcast in cinemas across the world on Wednesday 28 February. Find a cinema near you and sign up to our mailing list.