The residency features Dance Track 25, a celebration of the 25th anniversary of BRB’s landmark talent development programme
BRB’s world-class dancers and the magnificent Royal Ballet Sinfonia in An Evening of Music & Dance, an exciting concert hand-picked by BRB’s Director Carlos Acosta and the Royal Ballet Sinfonia, hosted by television and radio presenter and BRB board member Marverine Cole
A special introduction to ballet and the orchestra for everyone aged 4+ with a host of interactive fun and games in Family Music & Dance
An evening with Carlos Acosta and members of the BRB Company as they go behind the scenes from Studio to Stage
Carlos Acosta said: “Our Music and Dance events provide the perfect opportunity to showcase our orchestra and dancers as they all take to the stage. It’s wonderful to shine a light on our musicians who are usually largely out of sight in the pit! The interplay of music and dance in these events creates a unique dynamic that also serves to introduce ballet to classical music fans and classical music to fans of ballet, but also it is, purely and simply, a wonderful way to spend an afternoon or evening with young family members and friends.
We are especially delighted that the residency features the 25th anniversary celebration of BRB’s Dance Track programme telling the extraordinary story of how Dance Track has been keeping Birmingham’s young people dancing for 25 years.”
Dance Track 25 – Sunday 8 May
The Dance Track 25 performances will feature over 200 former and current Dance Track students on stage, including students at The Royal Ballet School and Elmhurst Ballet School and guest performances from BRB principals Céline Gittens and Brandon Lawrence.
Dance Track 25 will feature the reimagining of Dreams of a Sailor, a short ballet which Carlos Acosta recalls performing as a young ballet student in Cuba. The ballet will be reconstructed by BRB Rehearsal Director Marion Tait and Dance Track teacher, and former BRB First Artist, Rachel Hester.
Former BRB Soloist, Ruth Brill will create a new ballet for eight male students in years 7-12 from the city’s Elmhurst Ballet School which will showcase the talent of Birmingham born brothers Marlie and Arlo Kempsey-Fagg.
Former Dance Track student, and current member of Ballet Cymru, Jakob Myers, will dance the male variation from Sylvia, to music by Leo Délibes, after the 1952 version by Sir Frederick Ashton. Jakob from Birmingham will be coached by Carlos Acosta, who has danced the role many times in his long and illustrious career.
Leamington Spa’s Kit Holder, First Soloist with BRB, and accomplished choreographer, will be creating two works to highlight the talents of those Dance Track alumni who have since become students of The Royal Ballet School.
Kit Holder will also be creating a new work to showcase the extraordinary technical and expressive talents of Oscar Kempsey-Fagg, the third brother from Birmingham’s Kempsey-Fagg family to follow the Dance Track programme.
The performances will be hosted by Birmingham born actor, presenter and song-writer Shireenah Ingram. Shireenah was one of 200 young people who took part in Birmingham Royal Ballet’s ambitious social action project in 2006 entitled Ballet Changed My Life – Ballet Hoo! Shireenah is now an active BRB Board Member with a special interest in young people and community.
Studio to Stage – Tuesday 10 May
BRB’s Director Carlos Acosta and members of the BRB Company will take to The Rep’s stage for an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at how the company takes a new ballet from the studio to the stage.
How does a ballet come to life? Who directs the dancers? What comes first: the music or the movement? And who creates the costumes, designs the sets and lights the lights?
Join Carlos and Dominic Antonucci, BRB’s Assistant Director, as they host a special deep dive into the life of a ballet. From artistry to practicality, inspiration to perspiration. Discover how BRB readies a work for the stage – including a Carlos Acosta masterclass with several of BRB’s world-class dancers.
This special event will focus on two very different works: Will Tuckett’s Lazuli Sky, part of On Your Marks! this summer’s triple bill at Birmingham Hippodrome, part of Birmingham International Dance Festival, and Sir Peter Wright’s classic Coppélia, back in the city in October.
Family Music & Dance – Friday 13 May & Saturday 14 May
This special interactive performance is the perfect introduction to ballet and the orchestra for everyone aged 4+.
Shireenah Ingram returns as host, accompanied by conductor Phill Ellis, to present the 60 strong Royal Ballet Sinfonia who will take to The Rep stage as BRB’s brilliant dancers perform highlights from Sleeping Beauty, La Fille mal gardée and other classic ballets.
Family Music & Dance will also feature the Birmingham premiere of a brand-new production of everyone’s favourite love story Cinderella. This narrated musical fairtytale, set to music by composer Paul Reade is choreographed by BRB’s Principal Character Artist and Assistant Répétiteur Laura Day from Cheltenham. This exciting new production set in the glamorous 1950’s features students from Year 12 at Elmhurst Ballet School and dancers from BRB.
Cinderella will showcase brand new costumes that will feature favourite characters including The Ugly Sisters and the unforgettable Fairy Godmother.
An Evening of Music and Dance – Friday 13 and Saturday 14 May
The award-winning journalist, broadcaster and BRB Board member Marverine Cole will host a spectacular fun and enjoyable concert style evening of world class ballet featuring the Royal Ballet Sinfonia and BRB dancers.
This must-see event will delight fans of classical music and ballet in the intimate setting of the city’s only producing theatre.
This unique evening will see the company perform extracts of a ballet repertoire hand-picked by Carlos Acosta including the famous Bluebird pas de deux from The Sleeping Beauty and Ben Stevenson’s exquisite End of Time pas de deux. And, as ever, the music will be performed live by the full forces of the magnificent Royal Ballet Sinfonia playing popular classics with an operatic theme that include Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries, the Waltz from Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin and the overture from Verdi’s Nabucco, conducted by BRB Principal Conductor, Paul Murphy. The evening will also feature singers from the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.
Birmingham Royal Ballet’s week-long residency at The Rep runs from Sunday 8-Saturday 14 May. Tickets can be booked www.birmingham-rep.co.uk/whats-o
Featured image: Studio to Stage – Carlos-Acosta/Beatrice Parma photo-Clive-Booth