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MONTRÉAL, March 21, 2013 – Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal are thrilled to announce their 57th season, which includes the return of two repertoire gems, two visiting companies, a new work by long-time collaborator Stijn Celis, and the 50th anniversary of the perennial favourite The Nutcracker. Also this season, Les Grands Ballets' Orchestra will accompany five of the six ballets. Dance lovers can look forward to a high-spirited, high-coloured season!

“This season is all about transformation. The Roman poet Ovid chose the Greek word Metamorphosis to tell the story of the gods, and his famed epic poem was a guiding force in designing the 2013-2014 season. Metamorphosis, or that remarkable moment when a living being is changed or transformed into something else, is an integral part of life. It pushes us forward, helps us evolve as human beings and creates a greater sense of meaning in the world by showing us what happens when rules are broken. Without change, there cannot be growth. Each of the ballets presented this season revolves around this theme of metamorphoses, both physical and emotional. Just as Ovid’s poem keeps coming back to the notion of love, so each of the ballets embraces the healing power of love. ”- Gradimir Pankov, Artistic Director

In Mats Ek’s Sleeping Beauty, we see Aurora transformed by drug abuse, but also more positively by love and the creation of another human life. The Houston Ballet’s Marie-Antoinette shows us how time and context can radically alter an individual’s personality and how our perception of that person changes accordingly. In the National Ballet of Ukraine’s La Bayadère, Nikiya, Solor and the High Brahmin pay a heavy price for disrespecting the natural order, but it too ends with a positive reaffirmation of eternal love.

In Stijn Celis’ Transfigured Night, the theme of metamorphosis is even more pronounced, with the spiritual transformation of two human beings into one divine creature through the power of romantic love and love for an unborn child. Peter Quanz’s Rodin/Claudel shows the darker side of metamorphosis, with Claudel’s slow descent into madness, but even there, her passion is expressed through the art she helps to create. And finally, in our beloved The Nutcracker, we see the transposition of a sweet girl’s imagination into actual reality!



It all starts with the prick of a needle… Swedish choreographer Mats Ek, a trailblazing explorer of the human psyche, has boldly reinterpreted several classical ballets. “A fairy tale is like a pretty house,” the choreographer comments, “except that there’s a sign on the door that says “Danger—Mined Area.” Here he transforms this beloved bedtime story into a radical and subversive portrait of the human heart. Created in 1996 for the Hamburg Ballet, acclaimed by public and critics alike, this stirring modern tale of love and redemption is set to the splendid music of Tchaikovsky.

Les Grands Ballets | Casse-Noisette | Danseuse: Mahomie Endoh

THE NUTCRACKER: December 2013

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Nutcracker, an ageless classic that has been a Christmas tradition in Montreal for three generations, Les Grands Ballets have planned extra-special treats for children and adults alike: exhibitions, storytelling, festive events… This work, the longest-running ballet in Canada, has become a part of our collective imagination, our shared cultural heritage.

Les Grands Ballets / La Bayadere du Ballet national d'Ukraine

LA BAYADÈRE: February 2014

Choreographer Marius Petipa’s seminal La Bayadère, set to the music of Austrian composer Leon Minkus, was first performed at the Bolchoi Theatre in St. Petersburg in 1877. This version by the National Ballet of Ukraine, which is returning to Montreal two years after presenting the legendary Swan Lake, was created by Natalia Makarova for the American Ballet Theatre in 1980. Set in legendary India, this colourful epic drama portrays the tragic love of the noble warrior Solor and the bayadère Nikiya. Based in Kiev, the National Ballet of Ukraine has built a solid reputation with high-calibre works in the grand tradition of Russian ballet. A bravura performance, not to be missed.

Les Grands Ballets | Rodin/Claudel de Peter Quanz


Created for the company in 2011 by Peter Quanz, a Canadian choreographer who has choreographed works for the world’s preeminent ballet companies, this neoclassical work depicts the tumultuous relationship and the creative—and ultimately destructive—passion shared by French sculptor Auguste Rodin and his pupil Camille Claudel. With the collaboration of a team of Canadian designers, Quanz here embodies—literally—the inspiration he derived from the two artists and their creations.

Les Grands Ballets | Houston Ballets' Marie-Antoinette


A sumptuous and sweeping historical ballet created by Australian choreographer Stanton Welch for the Houston Ballet and set to the brooding music of Shostakovich, Marie Antoinette follows the path of Marie-Antoinette, France’s notorious queen, from child bride to spoiled socialite and political scapegoat during the French Revolution. The flamboyant costumes and dazzling sets designed by Canadian scenographer Kandis Cook brilliantly recreate the splendour of the court of Louis XVI.

Les Grands Ballets | La Nuit transfigurée | Danseur: Edi Blloshmi


This much-anticipated work by Belgian choreographer Stijn Celis, his third for Les Grands Ballets, is set to the expressionistic and innovative sextet for strings by composer Arnold Schoenberg. A man and a woman are walking in a dark forest, exchanging secrets. What follows is a radiant transformation of the two lovers through love and forgiveness.

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For complete details on our subscription options, group packages and their many advantages, call 514-849-0269, consult our season brochure or visit Our website also provides information on the productions, the company and its dancers.

Sponsors and partners
Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal would like to thank its season sponsor, Cinémas Guzzo. The company is also grateful for the support of the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, the Canada Council for the Arts and the Conseil des arts de Montréal.

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Media contact
Aléna Jeangrand
Ralationniste / Publicist
514-849-8681 # 263