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Watch: Members of the cast and creative team on The Winter’s Tale 2014

Another chance to see the backstage films screened as part of our live cinema relay.

By Lottie Butler (Former Assistant Content Producer (News and Social Media))

28 April 2014 at 10.30pm | 4 Comments

Christopher Wheeldon's new Royal Ballet production The Winter's Tale was screened live across the world on 28 April as part of the ROH Live Cinema Season 2013/14.

The relay, which was presented by Darcey Bussell, included a series backstage films featuring rehearsal footage and interviews with members of the cast and creative team. If you missed out on the night, or want to find out more about the production, here they are again:

Christopher Wheeldon, Joby Talbot and Edward Watson introduce The Winter's Tale:

Christopher based his second full-length work for The Royal Ballet on Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale, a drama that follows the destruction of a family through jealousy. ‘Bringing a new Shakespeare to life through dance is an exciting prospect,’ says Christopher. ‘It is a very complex story, but at the heart of it is profound, inexplicable jealousy that strikes Leontes and causes him to do some devastating acts.’

The ballet reunites the creative team behind Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. ‘We spent an amazing three days forensically taking it apart, ending up with a synopsis that was incredibly detailed, right down to the timings,’ says composer Joby Talbot.

Sarah Lamb, Christopher Wheeldon and Bob Crowley discuss Act 2 of The Winters Tale:

In Act Two the action moves to Bohemia where the lost princess Perdita, living as a shepherdess, falls in love with Prince Florizel. ‘Florizel is the son of King Polixenes and he doesn’t want his son marrying a commoner,’ explains Sarah Lamb, who created the role of Perdita. ‘Our union, and our quest to get that union blessed, is what brings everyone back together and what heals everyone.’

The music, designs and choreography vividly depict the contrasting worlds of the dreary, troubled court of Sicilia and the vibrant and cheerful countryside of Bohemia. ‘We designed Sicilia first, and Bohemia then became the antithesis of that,’ says designer Bob Crowley. ‘It is full of colour and pattern, and has a real exuberance compared to the austerity of the court of Leontes.’

Composer Joby Talbot discusses the music in The Winter's Tale:

A key element of The Winter’s Tale is the contrast between the two worlds explored in the ballet and composer Joby Talbot has created a score that depicts these drastically different moods, ranging from the troubled tension of Act One, to the joyful setting of Bohemia (which includes an on-stage folk band) to the emotional conclusion in Act Three.

'I’m incredibly proud of it,’ says Joby of the music. ‘Act One has this musical language which is quite taut and troubled. In Act Two we want an absolute change - a lot of beautiful dancing and beautiful music. We’re back in Sicilia for Act Three, which is very emotional and the music is freer.’

Read audience reactions to the cinema screening and add your own review.

The Winter’s Tale runs 12 April –10 June 2016. Tickets are available on 19 January 2016.


This article has 4 comments

  1. Pamela Courtenay Smith responded on 29 April 2014 at 6:13pm Reply

    saw the transmission last evening and have been going over it in my mind all day, it was just brilliant in every possible way, the simple set for Act 11 with the fabulous tree dominating the scene was a real gem. A stunning ballet, score, set, costumes, dancers, musicians, stage crew, House Staff too, (hope I have not missed any group out)many, many, many congratulations to absolutely everyone involved.

  2. James Mills responded on 4 May 2014 at 3:56pm Reply

    Fantastic choreography music and sets - WELL DONE !!!!!! This was a complete revelation. This was a 50th birthday present and was unforgettable. I have been watching ballet since I was a little boy as my mother used to teach ballet and very rarely have I come across a collaboration in the theater that works on so many levels. It has inspired me to find something of that kind of original creativity in my own work. What a gift. Many thanks.

  3. aelin responded on 28 August 2014 at 10:14pm Reply

    Will the music of this ballet come out one day ? Or any dvd ?
    I really enjoyed at the cinema, it was one of my greatest experience of recorded live ballet.

    • Chris Shipman (Head of Brand Engagement and Social Media) responded on 29 August 2014 at 12:05pm

      Hi Aelin,

      No DVD/CD release has been confirmed yet, but do keep an eye out on these pages for future details.


      ROH Content Producer

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