Hong Kong Ballet

he Hong Kong Ballet is one of the premier classical ballet companies in Asia and is becoming internationally recognized as a world-class institution with an identity that fully reflects the unique vitality of Hong Kong. The Company turned 30 in 2009, and over time it has evolved into a vibrant performing arts organization with accomplished dancers, a strong repertoire, and sparkling, technically challenging productions.

The company is led by Artistic Director Madeleine Onne with over 40 dancers originating from ten countries - including a strong core of Chinese artists - and perform a repertoire that combines 19th and 20th century classical masterpieces, acclaimed contemporary works and new commissioned ballets. In the 2009-10 season, the Company's 45 performances of eight local productions attracted a local audience of more than 41,000.

Since 1997, The Hong Kong Ballet has continued to raise its international profile and concluded 20 tours to 10 countries in North America, Europe and Asia. In August 2009, the Company performed Cinderella at the Macao Cultural Centre, and soon after, the Company brought Giselle to Beijing. The return visit to the Beijing's Poly Theatre, at the invitation of the Cultural Ministry of China, was to celebrate the landmark 60th anniversary of the establishment of the People's Republic of China. The Hong Kong Ballet was also invited to perform at the National Day parade, as the sole dance company representative on the HKSAR anniversary float. Most recently, the Company toured to Shanghai as a part of the World Expo 2010 celebrations.

Our repertoire reflects both the heritage and origin of ballet in Europe as well as contemporary influences, highlighted by commissions focusing on Hong Kong's culture and history. The Company's programme encompasses full length ballets such asSwan Lake, The Nutcracker, Giselle, a new 2010 version of The Sleeping Beauty staged by Cynthia Harvey, and the finest classical and neo-classical works of the 20th Century. These include works by George Balanchine like Allegro Brillante, Rudi van Dantzig's Romeo & Juliet, Ronald Hynd'sThe Merry Widow and Coppelia. The Company has also performed acclaimed contemporary ballets, such as William Forsythe's Steptext, Nils Christe's Symphony in Three Movements and Krzysztof Pastor's In Light and Shadow. Our commissions included Natalie Weir'sTurandot, Stephen Baynes' The Way Alone, Peter Quanz's Luminous, and creations by local choreographers - Eve Chan, Carlo Pacis, and Yuri Ng's Firecracker.

Education and community outreach programmes form a key initiative of The Hong Kong Ballet in expanding and developing new audiences, especially among young people. The Company partnered with the Leisure and Cultural Services Department for School Culture Day, Creative Ballet Animateur Scheme, and Arts Experience Scheme for Secondary Schools, and organized projects such as workshops and talks, university and public lectures. Through these initiatives, we reached over 25,000 participants in 2010, serving to deepen the awareness and appreciation of ballet. To bring the art form to those who may not otherwise have the opportunities to experience it, The Hong Kong Ballet also invited under-privileged young people to enjoy our rehearsals and performances.

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