After a 24-year absence from Los Angeles, Great Britain’s most prestigious ballet company, The Royal Ballet, returns to The Music Center for two back-to-back weekends this July at The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. From July 5–7, The Royal Ballet performs its masterpiece, Mayerling, a three-act work depicting scandal and murder in the 19th-century Austro-Hungarian Empire. The Royal Ballet also performs July 12–13, during Adès & McGregor: A Dance Collaboration, an extraordinary meld of music and dance world premieres.
Mayerling: July 5-7
The Royal Ballet’s Mayerling depicts the drama of dangerous desires, family secrets and political intrigue. The production is based on the true story of the 1889 deaths of the Austro-Hungarian Crown Prince and his teenage mistress. Set in the brilliant backdrop of the Viennese palace and the Mayerling hunting lodge, the performance brings to life the incident that shook the royal courts of the 19th century with a fatal attraction and the mysterious deaths of Crown Prince Rudolf and Baroness Mary Vetsera. The two gunshots that rang out at Mayerling in the Vienna Woods still echo in Kenneth’s MacMillan’s vivid dramatization today. Sex, death, the misfit and the pas de deux are hallmarks of MacMillan’s choreography, balancing classical tradition and innovation. Choreographed in 1978, Mayerling features one of the most demanding, complex male roles in the ballet repertory. Rudolf dances seven duets among the women in his life that express heightened emotion and the source of his despair from the mutual misunderstanding between he and his mother, Empress Elisabeth, to the brutality of his wedding night with Princess Stephanie, and from the unbridled physicality and lust in his first encounter with Vetsera to their tortured final duet. MacMillan’s large-scale crowd and court scenes also present the entire company at its dramatic finest. The ensemble scenes at court that force Rudolf to “behave” crackle with the tension between what he must do and his own wish not to do it.
The Music Center presentation of Mayerling will be accompanied by live orchestra performing music by Franz Liszt. “A sumptuous production” (The Spectator), Mayerling’s running time is approximately three hours, including two intermissions. One hour prior to each performance of Mayerling, The Music Center will host DANCETALKS led by dance historian and author Elizabeth Kaye.
Adès & McGregor: A Dance Collaboration: July 12–13
The following weekend, July 12–13, 2019, the company will also perform as part of Adès & McGregor: A Dance Collaboration, a major partnership between the LA Phil and Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center combining the creative talents of Grammy® Award-winning composer-conductor Thomas Adès and multi-award-winning British choreographer Wayne McGregor. The Royal Ballet, as well as Company Wayne McGregor, will dance in Adès & McGregor, an evening of three works including two dance world premieres with performances by the LA Phil under the baton of Adès. The Royal Ballet will debut the staged world premiere of The Dante Project (Inferno), a new work created for them by McGregor, the Royal’s resident choreographer and modern dance innovator. Inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy and set to Adès’ Inferno, the new work features set and costumes designed by visual artist Tacita Dean.
Set to Adès’ new score Inferno, with set and costume designs by Dean, The Dante Project (Inferno) is an epic journey through the afterlife performed by The Royal Ballet. The creative team for this work also includes lighting design by Lucy Carter and Simon Bennison and dramaturgy by Uzma Hameed. Inferno is the first act of this new ballet premiering in Los Angeles during this engagement. In May 2020, The Royal Ballet will present the full three-act ballet as a complete work at the Royal Opera House in London. The Music Center program will also feature a second dance world premiere of McGregor’s work danced by Company Wayne McGregor as well as the West Coast premiere of Outlier performed by both Company Wayne McGregor and dancers from The Royal Ballet.
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
135 N. Grand Ave., LA 90012
Mayerling, Friday, July 5, 7:30 p.m.
Mayerling, Saturday, July 6, 7:30 p.m.
Mayerling, Sunday, July 7, 2 p.m.
Adès & McGregor: A Dance Collaboration, Friday, July 12, 7:30 p.m.
Adès & McGregor: A Dance Collaboration, Saturday, July 13, 7:30 p.m.
For 10 tickets or more, call (213) 972-8555 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.