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April 16, 2011

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'Romeo and Juliet' on tiptoes

SCOTLAND'S Ballet West will recreate its acclaimed 2006 version of Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" on May 2 at the Shanghai Grand Theater.

The two-hour production of Shakespeare's tragic tale of young, star-crossed lovers will be danced by the brother and sister team of Sara-Maria Smith and Jonathan Barton. She has been widely praised for her classical roles and her assurance and charm as Juliet.

These principals are Genée International Ballet Competition medalists and have performed with companies such as Birmingham Royal Ballet, English National Ballet and Scottish Ballet.

Since it was created in 1935, "Romeo and Juliet" has been one of the world's most enduringly popular ballets with a sweeping score and soaring choreography.

This ballet will be produced by the same successful team that developed the company's recent productions, including Kenn Burke, former acting artistic director at Scottish Ballet.

"Although there is little dialogue in the show, its superb costumes, impressive scenery and fine choreography of body language are likely to enchant the audience," says Michelle Meng, an organizer.

Since its foundation in 1992, Ballet West has gathered UK's most promising and talented young ballet dancers like Smith. The ballet company is known for its productions that also showcase the work of dance school students in the final stages of their training.

Their productions of "The Nutcracker," "Swan Lake" and "Sleeping Beauty" have been critically praised and sold out in many countries in Europe and North America.

Prokofiev wrote his great ballet in 1935 for the Kirov Ballet Company. Music from the ballet was extracted by Prokofiev as three suites for orchestra and as a piano work.

The original version had a "happy ending" that was never mounted because of press criticism of modernist trends in art and literature.

Shakespeare's enduring tale of passion, murder, feud and tragedy in medieval Verona toured Scotland before arriving in China.

Date: May 2, 7:15pm

Address: People's Ave

Tickets: 120-580 yuan

Tel: 6386-8686


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