Scottish Ballet returns to stage with Gene Kelly production

Scottish Ballet will go on tour with Starstruck from September 23 to October 16.

Scottish Ballet returns to stage with Gene Kelly production PA Ready

A dance company will return to the stage next month with the UK premiere of a ballet created by Gene Kelly.

After 18 months without performing to a live audience amid coronavirus restrictions, Scottish Ballet will go on tour with Starstruck from September 23 to October 16.

Gene Kelly’s only ballet for the stage, Pas De Dieux, has been revived and given a new twist in the production created by Scottish Ballet artistic director Christopher Hampson and designer Lez Brotherston in collaboration with Kelly’s widow, Patricia Ward Kelly.

Set in Paris in 1960, Starstruck recreates “a world where jazz meets ballet, gods masquerade as mortals, and the stars align”.

Following the tour, Scottish Ballet will release the world premiere of their second feature-length film, also titled Starstruck, inspired by Gene Kelly’s work in Hollywood.

Christopher Hampson, who is also chief executive of Scottish Ballet, said: “We are overjoyed to be returning to stage this autumn, to finally perform to live audiences across our much-loved venues in Scotland.

“Gene Kelly’s pioneering choreography and much-loved style influenced a generation of dance-makers, and we honour his creative legacy with this dazzling new production.

“We are very proud of the distinctive dance films we have made over the last few years and look forward to adding this to our canon.”

The performance is set to Gershwin’s Concerto in F, with extracts from Chopin, recorded by the Scottish Ballet Orchestra.

Gene Kelly created Pas De Dieux after he was invited to create an original work for the Paris Opera Ballet in 1960.

Patricia Ward Kelly said: “It took over two decades for me to find the right home for Gene’s ballet, but I am certain now that it is in the right place and in the right hands… Gene would be very proud.”

The production will tour to Glasgow from September 23-25, Inverness from September 30-October 2, Aberdeen from October 7-9 and Edinburgh from October 14-16.

Tickets for the Scottish tour went on sale on Thursday with information available at https://www.scottishballet.co.uk/event/starstruck

The production for screen, directed by Oscar Sansom in partnership with Forest of Black, will be released in partnership with Marquee TV, receiving its world premiere on Friday November 26 until December 5 2021.

Scottish Ballet has also launched a Fit For The Gods Costume Appeal, asking the public to donate to the creation of nearly 100 new costumes.