Heather Ogden, Jenna Savella and Hannah Galway Cast in Title Role of Emma Bovary

Principal Dancer Piotr Stanczyk’s Farewell Performance Announced 

October 18, 2023... Hope Muir, Joan and Jerry Lozinski Artistic Director of The National Ballet of Canada, today announced that Principal Dancer Heather Ogden, First Soloist Jenna Savella and Second Soloist Hannah Galway have been cast in the title role of Helen Pickett’s Emma Bovary. The production makes its world premiere November 11 – 18 at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto on a programme that includes the Canadian premiere of Passion by James Kudelka

Principal Dancer Piotr Stanczyk who will retire from The National Ballet of Canada this season after an illustrious 25-year career, bids farewell dancing Passion. Specially acquired for him by Muir, Stanczyk will dance in select performances and will be celebrated by the entire company onstage on November 18 at 7:30 pm. 

The world premiere of Emma Bovary marks an exciting first partnership between The National Ballet of Canada and Helen Pickett, an award-winning choreographer, director and dancer. She partners with acclaimed opera and theatre director James Bonas, as co-director and co-treatment writer, to reimagine Gustave Flaubert’s Madame Bovary. A psychological exploration, the production tells the story from Emma’s perspective and features an original score by Peter Salem, sets and costumes by Michael Gianfrancesco, lighting by Bonnie Beecher, production designs by Anouar Brissel and animation by Grégoire Pont.  

About Emma Bovary > 

Passion, like many ballets by James Kudelka, is rich in emotion and human drama. A love story whose meticulous structure mirrors the music, the first movement of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Concerto for Piano in D, Op. 61a, Passion features two distinct styles, one classical and one contemporary, to present starkly different portraits of romantic attraction. 

About Passion > 

Piotr Stanczyk Biography >  

Additional casting and performance dates will be announced at a later date.  

Watch Videos

Exploring Emma: Helen Pickett and James Bonas on Creating Emma Bovary

Building the World of Emma Bovary

A Passionate Journey: Piotr Stanczyk on a Life in Dance


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Lead philanthropic support for Emma Bovary is provided by The Anna McCowan-Johnson New Creations Fund and The Producers’ Circle and with generous underwriting by the Sabourin Family Foundation.  

The Producers’ Circle (2023): Gail & Mark Appel, John & Claudine Bailey, Laura Dinner & Richard Rooney, Gail Drummond & Bob Dorrance, Ira Gluskin & Maxine Granovsky Gluskin, The William & Nona Heaslip Foundation, Anna McCowan-Johnson & Donald K. Johnson, O.C., Judy Korthals & Peter Irwin, Mona & Harvey Levenstein, Jerry Lozinski, O.C. & Joan Lozinski, O.C., The Honourable Margaret Norrie McCain, C.C., Julie Medland, Sandra Pitblado, C.M. & Jim Pitblado, C.M., The Harry & Lillian Seymour Family Foundation, The Jack Weinbaum Family Foundation and Alexander Younger & Sarah Richardson.   

Passion is generously supported by The Gail Hutchison Fund. The National Ballet also acknowledges support provided by Anne-Marie Canning.  

Heather Ogden is sponsored through Dancers First by Ira Gluskin & Maxine Granovsky Gluskin.   

Hannah Galway is sponsored through Dancers First by Alison & Alan Schwartz.    

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 Toronto Arts Council; the Government of Canada – Department of Canadian Heritage, through The Honourable Pascale St-Onge, Minister of Canadian Heritage; and the Government of Ontario through The Honourable Neil Lumsden, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. 

Hannah Galway. Photo by Karolina Kuras.

 For more information, please contact:

Catherine Chang
Associate Director, Communications and Content Strategy
416 345 9686 x302
Anastasia Kolotova
Public Relations Specialist
416 345 9686 x359