The Australian Ballet has announced its 2024 season, a diverse and captivating program of works which honour the Company’s commitment to classical greats and future masterpieces. The Company dancers will have the opportunity to flex their technical and dramatic talents in the season that features two world premieres by globally acclaimed choreographers, two abstract masterworks of modern ballet, a searing contemporary retelling of an iconic story, and two family-friendly storybook favourites.
In an exciting coup for the Company, Christopher Wheeldon returns with Oscar©, a brand-new full-length ballet about the life and works of Oscar Wilde. A new commission from Australian choreographer Stephanie Lake, Circle Electric, appears on a double bill with Harald Lander’s modern classic celebrating the precision of ballet technique, Études. George Balanchine’s showcase of ballet form and history Jewels, makes a glittering return to the stage and Johan Inger’s contemporary retelling of Carmen is an emotionally charged tale of passion and jealousy. The 2024 season is bookended by two charming stories of young heroines on magical adventures: Christopher Wheeldon’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland© and The Nutcracker by Sir Peter Wright.
Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet David Hallberg said, “Our 2024 season is brimming with ambitious repertoire that exemplifies our vast artistic versatility. This season brings creation to our core with exciting world premieres from acclaimed choreographers, alongside some of the most beloved ballets in the classical canon. Season 2024 has works that will provide the dancers with variation and depth to explore their artistry and equally provides audiences with a chance to witness the greatest creative talents in the world of dance.”
Executive Director of The Australian Ballet Lissa Twomey said, “We have a compelling selection of works for our 2024 season including thrilling new commissions and beloved favourites. We are immensely excited to see these come to life. Beyond our mainstage season, we have a substantive range of so many fantastic audience engagement programs, education workshops as well as another season of The Australian Ballet On Tour, which will see the Company travel through Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales.”
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland© opens the 2024 season with a burst of vivid colour and an unforgettable cast of characters. Acclaimed choreographer Christopher Wheeldon channels all the wit and charm of Lewis Carroll’s celebrated tale in this enchanting production, which has captured the hearts of audiences the world over with its immersive visual design and delightful storybook musical score. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland© opens in Sydney in February, before arriving in Melbourne in March for our final season at the State Theatre before it closes for renovations until 2027.
Carmen takes the 2024 season into a darker realm, shining a stark light on the dangers of excessive passion and jealous rage. The story of the defiant seductress murdered by her former lover is propelled into the 21st century in this powerful production by Johan Inger, an alum of Nederlands Dans Theater. Contemporary movement, original musical additions and inventive design bring new depth to the familiar tale, playing exclusively at Sydney Opera House in April.
Two technically virtuosic modern works are paired in a double bill titled Études / Circle Electric. The world premiere of Stephanie Lake’s Circle Electric charts moments of emotional acuity and relationship dynamics in her most ambitious project to date. A modern classic, Études by Harald Lander offers a tonal counterpoint, taking audiences on a journey through dancers’ daily ballet class and culminating in a grand-scale display of precision and technique. Honouring the ballet past while exploring the next iteration of the art form, Études / Circle Electric plays in Sydney in May before a season in Melbourne in October.
Emeralds, rubies and diamonds glitter in Jewels, a modern abstract masterpiece by ballet icon George Balanchine. Showcasing the distinctive movement and tone of three different balletic eras, each signified by different precious stones, Jewels will delight aficionados and newcomers alike when it plays exclusively at Adelaide Festival Centre in July, following a sell-out season in London’s Royal Opera House in 2023.
A portrait of wild wit, consummate celebrity and literary genius comes to the stage in the world premiere of Christopher Wheeldon’s Oscar©. This exciting commission brings together a formidable creative team to tell the story of the great Irish humorist, with moments from Wilde’s life interwoven with his best-known characters and stories. The production will mark the Company’s first performance at the Regent Theatre with a world-premiere season in September, before taking to the stage in Sydney in November.
A beloved Christmas tradition, Peter Wright’s The Nutcracker returns to the stage to close out the season with magic and festive cheer. The classic story of young Clara’s adventures through the Magical Forest to the Land of Sweets is brought to life through sumptuous designs and Tchaikovsky’s incomparable score. The Nutcracker will delight audiences at Sydney Opera House from November.
The Australian Ballet’s 2024 activities will also include a range of audience engagement events such as The Australian Ballet On Tour travelling to Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales and an education program which tours to schools across the country.
Sydney Principal Packages are on sale from 3 October 2023. Melbourne Principal Packages are on sale from 28 November 2023.
For more information, visit australianballet.com.au.