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Graphic: Press ReleasesGraphic: July
 
Kiev Ballet debuts in Hong Kong in September
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     The world class Kiev Ballet from Ukraine will visit Hong Kong for the first time in September, bringing two full-length ballet masterpieces to local audiences.

     On Friday and Saturday, September 18 and 19, the company will perform the Hong Kong premiere of "Raymonda", a ballet in two acts, at the Auditorium, Sha Tin Town Hall; and it will perform the classic "Swan Lake" in four acts on Sunday, September 20, at the Auditorium, Tuen Mun Town Hall. All performances start at 7.30pm.

     As the resident ballet company of the National Opera of Ukraine, the Kiev Ballet was established in the 1860s and is renowned for maintaining its tradition of performing excellence with remarkable precision, flawless purity and immaculate pageantry. It has one of the largest repertoires in the world, with 24 full-length ballets that include "Swan Lake", "Raymonda", "Sleeping Beauty", "Don Quixote" and "La Bayadere". It also performs ballets to the music of Skorulsky, Tchaikovsky, Ravel and Prokofiev, to name a few. One of the highlights of the company in its early days was the 1874 premiere of Tchaikovsky's "The Oprichnik". The composer attended the show and highly praised the company for its excellence.

     The company received the Gold Star Award, the highest award from the French Academy of Dance, in 1964. In 1971, its performance of Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" was recognised by UNESCO as the best interpretation of Prokofiev's ballet.

     As a result of superb training and demonstration of artistic excellence in their early careers, many of the principal artists of the Kiev Ballet have become ballet stars all over the world. They include Alina Cojocaru and Ivan Putrov (The Royal Ballet), Irina Dvorovenko and Maxym Bilotserkivsky (American Ballet Theatre), Leonid Sarafanov and Nadia Gonchar (Kirov Ballet) and Alexei Ratmanski (Bolshoi Ballet).

     With their artistry and technical brilliance, the Kiev Ballet has dazzled audiences in China, Japan, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, Canada and the United States.

     Performances by the Kiev Ballet are presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department. Tickets ranging from $100 to $360 will be available from July 18 (Saturday) onwards at URBTIX outlets. Senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients may have 50% off (limited quotas for students and CSSA recipients on a first-come, first-served basis). A maximum discount of 20% is offered for group booking scheme. Please refer to the programme leaflet and website www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp for details.

     Two pre-performance talks will be held at 7.30pm on August 25 (Exhibition Gallery, Sha Tin Town Hall) and on August 27 (Function Room AC1, 4/F, Administration Building, Hong Kong Cultural Centre). The talks will be free of charge and conducted in Cantonese. People are welcome to attend and seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

     A ballet workshop (conducted in English by Victor Yaremenko, Artistic Director of the Kiev Ballet) will also be held at 7.30pm on September 17 (Thursday) at Function Room I, Queen Elizabeth Stadium. Tickets priced at $150 will be available tomorrow at URBTIX outlets. Participants should have basic ballet experience.

     For enquiries about the programme, the talks and the workshop, call 2268 7323 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp. Ticketing enquiries and reservations can be made on 2734 9009 and credit card telephone bookings on 2111 5999. Tickets can also be booked online at www.urbtix.hk.

Ends/Friday, July 17, 2009
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