Joburg Ballet’s first production of 2017 will be the long-awaited return of celebrated choreographer Veronica Paeper’s La Traviata – The Ballet to Joburg Theatre for ten performances from Friday 31 March to Sunday 9 April. The ballet was last performed in Johannesburg to public and critical acclaim in 2008.
Paeper is South Africa’s leading choreographer working in the classical style and has created an extensive repertoire of ballets. She is particularly admired for her full-length story ballets, among which La Traviata – The Ballet is one of her most popular works.
Originally created in Cape Town in 1990, La Traviata – The Ballet is based on the 19th century story of the Lady of the Camellias. A deeply moving portrait of a woman who sacrifices all for the man she loves, the ballet is set to the unforgettable music of Verdi’s opera La Traviata, arranged and adapted for the ballet by conductor Allan Stephenson.
In addition to performances in SA, La Traviata – The Ballet has also been presented in the UK where critics admired it as “graceful, passionate and ravishingly romantic”, “an utterly compelling production” and “outstanding throughout”.
Early Bird booking, with all seats less 30% (excluding Opening Night and 11:00 morning performances) has been extended by a week to Tuesday 31 January. This allows ticket buyers a further week to benefit from the 30% discount before standard prices apply from the beginning of February.
The company has also announced several new appointments for 2017: after leaving Joburg Ballet for the last four months of 2016 to take part in a Cape Town production of Spartacus, Juan Carlos Osma and Dayana Acuna have rejoined the company; Spanish dancer Sergi Castello has joined as a soloist; Jessica Hurwitz and Savannah Ireland from the Joburg Ballet Academy have joined as members of the junior corps de ballet; and Shayne Greene, Luisa Higgo and Sibusiso Mtsweni have joined the company’s aspirant programme for 2017.
Promotions announced by Joburg Ballet for 2017 are Dayana Acuna and Kirstel Jensen to senior soloist, Shana Dewey to soloist, Ruan Galdino and Thabang Mabaso to senior corps de ballet, Alice le Roux to corps de ballet, and Kyle Baird and Mahlatse Sachane to junior corps de ballet. Krystn Janicek and Jessica Lombard, who were in the aspirant programme in 2016, have been named as ad hoc dancers for 2017.