What’s On: Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Swan Lake


One of the most beloved and timeless ballets is set to tour Aotearoa 

When: May 1 – Jun 2, 2024
Where: Wellington, Auckland, Napier, Christchurch, Dunedin, Invercargill

The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s (RNZB) much-anticipated season of the timeless masterpiece, Swan Lake, will finally take flight in May.

Heralded as the ultimate ballet, this exquisite work has captivated audiences across generations with its unparalleled beauty, emotion, and onstage spectacle. Last seen onstage in 2013, when the RNZB’s performances attracted full houses across the motu, the return of Swan Lake to New Zealand theatres has been eagerly awaited by ballet lovers of all ages.

Swan Lake is the pinnacle of balletic artistry, a testament to the dedication and skill of any dancers who bring its characters to life. Celebrating the talent and technical brilliance of a new generation of RNZB performers, this production, lovingly re-staged by former RNZB Ballet Mistress Turid Revfeim, pays homage to the artistic legacy of former Artistic Director, choreographer and RNZB kaumatua, Russell Kerr.

“We are thrilled to be visiting Swan Lake once again in 2024,” says RNZB Artistic Director Ty King-Wall. “This production holds so many precious memories for generations of New Zealanders. With Russell’s passing in 2022, our season is imbued with even more emotion, as we recognise his incredible talent and honour one of the true luminaries of ballet in Aotearoa. Swan Lake’s themes of hope, deception, betrayal, and forgiveness continue to resonate so powerfully. I know how excited the dancers are to be performing Swan Lake this year, and hope audiences are ready to be swept away to this supernatural, transcendent world with us.”

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In Tchaikovsky’s sweeping score, each note resonates with romance, drawing the audience into a world of opulence and tragedy. Kristian Fredrikson’s lavish costumes, illuminated by masterful lighting designer Jon Buswell, will transport guests from the grandeur of palace ballrooms to the serene shores of the lakeside.

The RNZB will collaborate with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra in Te Whanganui-a-Tara, the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra in Ōtautahi, and the Auckland Philharmonia in Tāmaki Makaurau to bring this exquisite production, and its iconic score, to magical and mesmerising life.

Swan Lake 2024 season

Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington 1-5 May
St James Theatre

Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland, 9-12 May
Kiri Te Kanawa Theatre

Ahuriri Napier 17-18 May
Municipal Theatre

Ōtautahi Christchurch, 23-26 May
Isaac Theatre Royal

Ōtepoti Dunedin, 30 May
Regent Theatre

Waihōpai Invercargill, 2 June
Civic Theatre

For more information and to view the full 2024 RNZB program, visit www.rnzb.org.nz.

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