News

The National Ballet of Canada Returns to the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

January 9, 2020

The Sleeping Beauty and Contemporary Programme
January 28 – February 2, 2020

Karen Kain, Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada, today announced the principal casting for the company’s upcoming tour to Washington, D.C. Returning to the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts January 28 – February 2, the National Ballet will display its trademark versatility with a gem from the classical repertoire, The Sleeping Beauty, as well as a programme of contemporary works by William Forsythe, Jiří Kylián and Alexei Ratmansky.
 
Music Director and Principal Conductor David Briskin will conduct the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra who will accompany all performances.
 
The National Ballet performs a thrilling programme of works by William Forsythe, Jiří Kylián and Alexei Ratmansky. Set to the final movement of Schubert’s Ninth Symphony, William Forsythe’s fiercely demanding The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude requires pure classical technique, along with rigour, focus and speed. Approximate Sonata 2016, a more subdued Forsythe but no less athletic, is an assemblage of intricately shaped pas de deux set to a minimalist piano score by Thom Willems. Petite Mort is a dynamic ballet by acclaimed Czech choreographer Jiří Kylián. A poetic expression of ecstasy, the cast of six male and six female dancers move and spar with one another in beautiful and unexpected ways. Alexei Ratmansky’s Piano Concerto #1 is an homage to composer Dmitri Shostakovich’s life and his transcendent spirit of creation. This work is the final section of the choreographer’s Shostakovich Trilogy.
 
Of all the story ballets, perhaps none embodies classical ballet’s exuberance, grace and virtuosity more than The Sleeping Beauty. In 1972, Rudolf Nureyev staged his version of the ballet for the company, helping put The National Ballet of Canada on the international map. Considered one of the most richly entertaining and technically impressive productions, The Sleeping Beauty features Tchaikovsky’s unforgettable score and lush designs by Nicholas Georgiadis and lighting by David Hersey. One of the National Ballet’s most treasured works, The Sleeping Beauty is a jewel in the company’s repertoire.
 
The opening night cast of The Sleeping Beauty will feature Principal Dancers Heather Ogden and Harrison James as Princess Aurora and Prince Florimund. First Soloist Emma Hawes makes her debut this season as Princess Aurora and First Soloist Koto Ishihara makes her debut as Princess Florine.
 
Principal Casting:
 
Works by Forsythe, Kylián and Ratmansky, January 28 – 29, 2020
 
The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude
Hannah Galway
, Chelsy Meiss, Calley Skalnik
Naoya Ebe, Harrison James
(January 28 at 7:30 pm)
 
Tirion Law, Jeannine Haller, Calley Skalnik
Siphesihle November, Donald Thom
(January 29 at 7:30 pm)
 
Approximate Sonata 2016
1st & 5th Sonata
Sonia Rodriguez and Spencer Hack
 
2nd Sonata
Hannah Fischer and Christopher Gerty
 
3rd Sonata
Elena Lobsanova and Ben Rudisin
 
4th Sonata
Tanya Howard and Kota Sato

Petite Mort
Miyoko Koyasu*, Joe Chapman
Hannah Galway*, Skylar Campbell
Jillian Vanstone, Donald Thom
Tina Pereira, Spencer Hack
Hannah Fischer, Brendan Saye
Greta Hodgkinson, Guillaume Côté
Piano Concerto #1
Elena Lobsanova and Harrison James
Koto Ishihara
and Naoya Ebe

The Sleeping Beauty, January 30 – February 2, 2020
 
Princess Aurora
Heather Ogden (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Jillian Vanstone (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Emma Hawes* (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
Prince Florimund
Harrison James (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Francesco Gabriele Frola (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Guillaume Côté (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
King Florestan
Jonathan Renna 
 
Queen
Sophie Letendre+
 
Catalabutte, Master of Ceremonies
Tomas Schramek (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Hazaros Surmeyan (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 1, 2 at 1:30 pm)
 
The Lilac Fairy
Tanya Howard 
 
Carabosse, the Wicked Fairy
Rebekah Rimsay (January 30, 31, February 1 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Alejandra Perez-Gomez (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
Principal Fairy
Emma Hawes (January 30 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Hannah Fischer (January 31, February 1 at 7:30 pm/February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
Bluebird
Naoya Ebe (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Siphesihle November (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Skylar Campbell (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
Princess Florine
Elena Lobsanova (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Miyoko Koyasu (January 31 at 7:30 pm)
Tina Pereira (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
Koto Ishihara* (February 2 at 1:30 pm)
 
Diamond Lady
Chelsy Meiss (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Hannah Fischer (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Jordana Daumec (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
Diamond Man
Donald Thom (January 30, February 1 at 7:30 pm)
Brendan Saye* (January 31 at 7:30 pm/February 2 at 1:30 pm)
Jack Bertinshaw (February 1 at 1:30 pm)
 
*Debut +Guest Artist
 
More Information About Tour to Washington, D.C. >
 
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts >
 
– 30 –
 
Lead philanthropic support for Piano Concerto #1 is provided by an anonymous friend of the National Ballet and The Producers’ Circle.
 
Lead philanthropic support for The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude and Approximate Sonata 2016 is generously provided by Sandra Simpson, an anonymous friend of the National Ballet and The Estate of Douglas Gardner, with additional support from The Producers’ Circle.
 
The Sleeping Beauty is made possible by generous contributions from Margaret Fleck & Jim Fleck, C.C., The Catherine and Maxwell Meighen Foundation, Sandra Pitblado & Jim Pitblado, C.M., Gretchen Ross and Nancy Pencer & Michael Benjamin.
 
Skylar Campbell is sponsored through Dancers First by Tricia Younger.
 
Guillaume Côté is sponsored through Dancers First by Emmanuelle Gattuso, C.M. and Allan Slaight, C.M.
 
Naoya Ebe is sponsored through Dancers First by Gretchen Ross.
 
Francesco Gabriele Frola is sponsored through Dancers First by Sherry and Edward Drew.
 
Harrison James is sponsored through Dancers First by Lucy White.
 
Svetlana Lunkina is sponsored through Dancers First by Anna McCowan Johnson & Donald K. Johnson, O.C.
 
Heather Ogden is sponsored through Dancers First by Ira Gluskin & Maxine Granovsky Gluskin.
 
Brendan Saye is sponsored through Dancers First by Robin Vaile Robinson.
 
Jillian Vanstone is sponsored through Dancers First by George & Kathy Dembroski.
 
Jordana Daumec is sponsored through Dancers First by an anonymous donor.
 
Hannah Fischer is sponsored through Dancers First by an anonymous donor.
 
Emma Hawes is sponsored through Dancers First by Sherry and Edward Drew.
 
Chelsy Meiss is sponsored through Dancers First by Diana St. B. Weatherall.
 
Tina Pereira is sponsored through Dancers First by The Honourable Margaret Norrie McCain, C.C.
 
Ben Rudisin is sponsored through Dancers First by an anonymous donor.
 
Christopher Gerty is sponsored through Dancers First by Ms. Nancy Viner & Dr. Raymond Stein.
 
Jeannine Haller is sponsored through Dancers First by Devida & Derek Smith.
 
Kathryn Hosier is sponsored through Dancers First by Donna Meyers & Doug Richmond.
 
Siphesihle November is sponsored through Dancers First by Jerry & Joan Lozinski.
 
Kota Sato is sponsored through Dancers First by Tony Arrell, C.M. & Anne Arrell.
 
Calley Skalnik is sponsored through Dancers First by an anonymous donor.
 
The National Ballet of Canada gratefully acknowledges the ongoing support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Ontario Arts Council; the City of Toronto through the Economic Development & Culture Department; the Government of Canada – Department of Canadian Heritage, through the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism; and the Government of Ontario through The Honourable Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

Contact Information

media@national.ballet.ca