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Corybantic Games

2–20 April 2020
Main Stage

A stirring abstract ballet created by Christopher Wheeldon in 2018 to mark the centenary of Leonard Bernstein’s birth.

  • This work is being performed as part of the following mixed programme(s):

  • Live Fire Exercise / TBC / Corybantic Games

    A contemporary programme of works by Wayne McGregor and Christopher Wheeldon and a third ballet to be announced, with music by Michael Tippett and Leonard Bernstein and costumes by Erdem Moralioglu.


Christopher Wheeldon has been Artistic Associate of The Royal Ballet since 2012 but his relationship with The Royal Ballet goes back much further – he trained at The Royal Ballet School and began his career as a dancer with the Company. But he also has close ties to New York City Ballet, both as a dancer and as the company’s former resident choreographer, a role created for him. This made him perhaps uniquely placed to create a new work for The Royal Ballet that celebrated the centenary of devoted New Yorker Leonard Bernstein.

Corybantic Games was first presented by The Royal Ballet as part of a mixed programme of works set to Bernstein’s music, all created by the Company’s associate choreographers. This world premiere from Wheeldon closed a programme that included a world premiere from Wayne McGregor and the first revival of Liam Scarlett’s The Age of Anxiety. The ballet sees Wheeldon collaborate with award-winning fashion designer Erdem Moralioglu, whose designs are known for their couture-level craftsmanship and use of experimental textiles. Moralioglu's costume designs for Corybantic Games won the fashion category of the Design Museum’s Design of the Year awards 2018, and the ballet also won a Walpole Luxury Award 2018 for Creative Collaboration.

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