Live Cinema Season

Romeo and Juliet (2019)

Recorded | Ballet

Running time: The performance lasts about 3 hours, including two intervals

Romeo and Juliet (2019)

Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers encounter passion and tragedy in Kenneth MacMillan's 20th-century ballet masterpiece.


The story

Romeo and Juliet fall passionately in love, but their families are caught up in a deadly feud. They marry in secret, but tragic circumstances lead Romeo to fight and kill Juliet's cousin Tybalt. As punishment, he is banished from the city.

When Juliet's parents force her to marry Paris, she takes drastic action by drinking a potion to make her appear dead so she can escape to join Romeo. But her message explaining this plan fails to reach him. When he hears news of her death, he returns to visit her tomb and kill himself. Juliet wakes to find him dead. Devastated, she stabs herself.


Kenneth MacMillan's passionate choreography for Romeo and Juliet shows The Royal Ballet at its dramatic finest. Sergey Prokofiev's iconic score provides the basis for the ballet's romantic pas de deux and vibrant crowd scenes, while 16th-century Verona is created by Nicholas Georgiadis's magnificent designs.

In 1965, MacMillan's Romeo and Juliet was given its premiere at Covent Garden by The Royal Ballet and was an immediate success: the first night was met with rapturous applause, which lasted for 40 minutes, and an incredible 43 curtain calls. The title roles were danced by Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn, although the ballet had been created on Christopher Gable and Lynn Seymour. It has been performed by The Royal Ballet more than four hundred times since, as well as touring the world, and has become a true classic of the 20th-century ballet repertory.



Kenneth MacMillan


Sergey Prokofiev


Nicholas Georgiadis

Lighting designer

John B. Read

Performed by
The Royal Ballet


Pavel Sorokin
Yasmine Naghdi
Matthew Ball
Valentino Zucchetti
Gary Avis
Benjamin Ella
Nicol Edmonds
Lord Capulet
Christopher Saunders
Lady Capulet
Christina Arestis
Thomas Whitehead
Fumi Kaneko
Kristen McNally
Friar Laurence
Jonathan Howells
Lord Montague
Jonathan Howells
Lady Montague
Tara-Brigitte Bhavnani
Juliet’s Friends
Mandolin dancers
Ballroom Guests, Townspeople
Artists of The Royal Ballet
Concert Master
Sergey Levitin
Orchestra of the Royal Opera House

News and features

To find out more visit the Romeo and Juliet (2019) production page.