Romeo and Juliet ballet on NI tour

Scene from Ballet Ireland's Romeo and Juliet
Scene from Ballet Ireland's Romeo and Juliet

A critically acclaimed production of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet set to the music of Prokofiev will be performed by Ballet Ireland across the province next month.

The iconic tale of two star-crossed lovers will be interpreted by a cast of world class dancers including ballerina Leigh Alderson from Portadown.

Romeo and Juliet is one of the greatest and most enduring love stories of all time. Against a backdrop of ancient feuds and gang warfare, the ill-fated young couple fall hopelessly in love, but their families are bitter enemies. Their struggle to be together despite divisive circumstances ends in tragedy.

Following Ballet Ireland’s much vaunted production of Giselle earlier this year, Romeo and Juliet will visit 24 venues this autumn including the Riverside Theatre, Coleraine on November 7, Theatre at the Mill, Newtownabbey on November 8, the Burnavon Arts Centre on November 11 and the Ardhowen Theatre, Enniskillen on November 24.

In this version choreographed by Morgann Runacre-Temple and with Prokofiev’s dramatic score, Shakespeare’s tragic tale is transported from the streets of medieval Verona to the classrooms of a modern-day high school to become a play within a play.

The action shows pupils at school putting on a production of Romeo and Juliet as a cautionary tale about the devastating affects of civil strife and the tragedy of star-crossed love. Each pupil is assigned a character and the action ensues.

The result is a moving, visceral ballet with a dazzling combination of timeless themes - passion and hatred, comedy and deep tragedy.

“To make the tale of Romeo and Juliet feel alive to a modern audience, to take away the swords, long dresses and the men in tights, the 400 years of re-tellings - that was my ambition for this ballet,” says choreographer Morgann Runacre-Temple.

“I wanted to dive straight into the catastrophic choices two teenagers make in order to be together just 24 hours after their first meeting. For me Romeo and Juliet is about love but also fantasy, in our wildest dreams - what we are prepared to risk for the chance of true love, no matter how fleeting, or how high the stakes may be.”

Contact the relevant venue for tickets,