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Ballet in two acts and a prologue after William Shakespeare

Choreography John Neumeier · Composer Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy / György Ligeti

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Cast for all dates

Musikalische Leitung
Michael Schmidtsdorff
Choreographie und Inszenierung
John Neumeier
Bühne und Kostüme
Jürgen Rose

Hippolyta/Titania
Ivy Amista (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Theseus/Oberon
Erik Murzagaliyev (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Helena
Laurretta Summerscales (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Demetrius
Javier Amo (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Hermia
Kristina Lind (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Lysander
Jonah Cook (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Philostrat/Puck
Yonah Acosta (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018) , N.N. (04-19-2018)
Zettel (Pyramus)
Alexey Dobikov (01-18-2018, 01-20-2018)
  • Soloists and corps de ballet of the Bavarian State Ballet
  • Bayerisches Staatsorchester
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Why have composers and choreographers been fascinated for decades by Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night’s Dream? Maybe it is the historical period of the play, maybe the caste system, maybe the versatile stylistic means of writing and the tangled plot? Fairy tale characters like Oberon and Titania fight sensual and witty battles, next to figures from Greek mythology, such as Theseus and Hippolyta which cause great confusion in the life of a clumsy craftsman and a group of lovers from present times.

Choreographer John Neumeier created his version of Sommernachtstraum in 1977 and the piece has been a steady part of the Bavarian State Ballet's repertory since 1993. Proof lies in its unique and thoughtful, virtuosic approach to developing drama. After all, the complex mixture of musical layers would be worth a separate panel discussion. Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy's atmospheric musical score for Sommernachtstraum reflects the world of the mortals, while Györgi Ligeti's siren-esque organ pieces bring to mind the fairy kingdom depicted in Shakespeare's play. The craftsmen's dance is underlined by dominant opera paraphrases for the barrel organ which satirize even the noblest melodies. As with the musical layers, together with his stage- and costume designer Jürgen Rose, Neumeier mixes the historical settings cleverly. What would be more suited to the sounds of Mendelsohn's score than a sweet Biedermeier set? An olive tree is a perfect symbol of the antique, mythology and fairy tales in one. John Neumeier's A Midsummer Night’s Dream always has been a wonderful representation of an full-length classical ballet made in the ladder half of the 20th century, the 1970s in Germany. 

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Biographies

Michael Schmidtsdorff was born in Hamburg. He studied conducting in his hometown and in Vienna. After being an assistance conductor at the Hamburgische Staatsoper and the Deutsches Nationaltheater Weimar he became leading conductor and assistant musical director at the Theater Lüneburg.

In 1998, he conducted at the Hamburg Ballett John Neumeier for the first time and traveled around the world with the company over the years. Since 2002, he worked with the Berliner Staatsballett, the Ballet de l'Opéra Paris, the Ballett der Sächsischen Staatsoper Dresden, the Royal Danish Ballet in Copenhagen and the ballet of the Teatro Massimo in Palermo (together with the Martha Graham Dance Company New York in 2015). Further guest performances led him to St. Petersburg, Japan, San Francisco, Muscat (Oman) and to Cagliari.

Since 2005, Michael Schmidtsdorff regularly conducts performances with the Bayerisches Staatsballett. In February 2017 he will acompany the guest performance of the Bayerisches Staatsballett to Hong Kong.

Repertoire with the Bayerischen Staatsballett

The Lady of the Camellias (F. Chopin/J. Neumeier)
Swan Lake (P. Tschaikowsky /P. Bart/M. Petipa)
Brahms-Schönberg Quartett (G. Balanchine)
Große Fuge (L. van Beethoven / H. van Manen)
Le Corsaire (L. Minkus / M. Petipa / I. Liška)
Raymonda (A. Glasunow / M. Petipa / R. Barra)
Onegin (P. Tschaikowsky / J. Cranko)
Illusions – like Swan Lake (P. Tschaikowsky/J. Neumeier)
Giselle (A. Adam/M. Ek)
A Midsummer Night's Dream (F. Mendelssohn Bartholdy/J. Neumeier)
Sinfonie in C / in the Night / Adam is (G. Bizet/F. Chopin/G. Balanchine/ J. Robbins/ A. Barton)
La Bayadère (L. Minkus/M. Petipa/P. Bart)
Paquita (A. Ratmansky/ M. Petipa)
Terpsichore Gala IX & X (The World of the Ballets Russes, 20th anniversary season of the Staatsballetts)

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