Joburg Ballet Celebrates Shakespeare with Romeo and Juliet in July
Guest Artists, Casting & Vuyani Dance Theatre Collaboration for Romeo and Juliet
Joburg Ballet artistic director Iain MacDonald has announced that Australian-born international guest artist Aaron Smyth will visit South Africa in July to dance Romeo for the first time in Joburg Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet.
Sharing the role of Romeo with Smyth during the 10-performance season at the Joburg Theatre from 15 to 24 July are Joburg Ballet principal dancers Juan Carlos Osma, Michael Revie and Jonathan Rodrigues.
Alternating as Juliet will be Shannon Glover, Kirstel Jensen, Dayana Hardy and prima ballerina Burnise Silvius. Glover, Jensen and Hardy won accolades for their performances as Giselle last month while Silvius will be making an eagerly awaited return to the stage in one of her most highly acclaimed roles following an injury earlier this year. Full casting details for Romeo and Juliet will be announced shortly.
Aaron Smyth is returning to Joburg Ballet for his career début as Romeo after earlier guest appearances with the company in 2012, 2013 and 2015. With his technical brilliance, strong dramatic flair and engaging stage presence, Smyth is one of Joburg Ballet’s most popular guest artists.
Aaron Smyth studied in Australia and New York, performed at the Metropolitan Opera House for American Ballet Theatre’s 2009 Spring Gala, at the AT&T Medallists Encore Gala in Jackson, Mississippi, and the Royal Academy of Dancing’s Gala in Tokyo. A multiple award-winner in ballet competitions around the world, Smyth joined ABT II in New York in 2010 and has since danced with The Royal Ballet, English National Ballet and the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago.
Iain MacDonald has also announced that Joburg Ballet will be joined for the Romeo and Juliet season by nine dancers from Vuyani Dance Theatre, one of South Africa’s leading dance companies, who will augment Joburg Ballet for the large scale Romeo and Juliet which returns to the company’s repertoire after an absence of five years.
Commenting on the partnership, MacDonald said: “We are very pleased to share the stage with Vuyani Dance Theatre. I admire their excellence and energy and am pleased to further cement the existing partnership between our companies. I know our dancers will gain from this experience and I believe the Vuyani dancers will find value and enjoyment in this partnership. It is also my hope that sharing the stage will expose both Joburg Ballet and Vuyani to new audiences.”
Gregory Vuyani Maqoma, creative executive director of Vuyani Dance Theatre, commented: “One of the pillars of Vuyani Dance Theatre’s 2020 Strategy places collaborations of different artistic voices in the forefront in enhancing the ideals of cultural cohesion. It is in this regard that we see the collaboration with Joburg Ballet fulfilling our mandate of exploring new spaces and audiences and to also expose our audiences to a historically classical form of dance that has a long history in our country. I know that Vuyani dancers in a production of Romeo and Juliet will be able to add value to the production and bring an energy that is rich in texture. Vuyani prides itself on its chameleon-like ability to cross cultures and audiences and the confidence provided by other companies to collaborate.”
Booking for Romeo and Juliet is via Joburg Theatre on 0861 670 670 and online at www.webtickets.co.za.
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ROMEO AND JULIET: FAST FACTS
WHERE: Joburg Theatre, Braamfontein
DATES AND PRICES:
- 15 July at 19h30 – Opening Night all seats half price: R90, R125, R170, R195, R225
- 16, 17, 23, 24 July at 15h00 and 16, 22, 23 July at 19h30 – Standard Prices: R180, R250, R340, R390, R450
- 19, 20 July at 11h00 – All tickets R80
BOOK NOW: In person at Joburg Theatre Box Office or tel. 0861 670 670; and online at www.webtickets.co.za
Patrons can also book and pay via the Nedbank app and at selected Pick n Pay stores (full list at www.webtickets.co.za/pnpoutlets.aspx)
Joburg Ballet thanks Kaya FM, our radio partner, for their support. We would like to acknowledge the support of the City of Johannesburg and all our Sponsors.