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Change of artist for Royal Ballet's "Manon"

A spokesman for the Leisure and Cultural Services Department announced today (June 23), “Due to injury, Alina Cojocaru will be replaced in the role of Manon by another renowned ballerina, Leanne Benjamin, during the Royal Ballet’s visit to Hong Kong in July.” .

Benjamin is one of the principals of the Royal Ballet. Apart from “Manon”, her repertory includes “Swan Lake”, “Giselle”, “Cinderella”, and many more.

The Royal Ballet, one of the world’s most prestigious ballet companies , from the United Kingdom, will bring to Hong Kong two masterpieces, “Sylvia” and “Manon”. They will be performed by award-winning principals, including Tamara Rojo and Mara Galeazzi as Manon, Federico Bonelli, David Makhateli and Johan Kobborg as Des Grieux, Marianela Nunez and Sarah Lamb as Sylvia, as well as Federico Bonelli and Rupert Pennefather as Aminta.

For over 20 years, Hong Kong ballet fans have been anticipating the return of The Royal Ballet. Stephen Xavier, Artistic Director of The Hong Kong Ballet Group, says he has admired “Sylvia” and “Manon” time and again. “Whilst the legendary ‘Sylvia’ has more spectacular large scale dances, ‘Manon’ is more romantic, dramatic and moving,” said Xavier.

Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department, The Royal Ballet will perform “Sylvia” (in three acts) at 7.30pm on July 17 and 18 (Thursday and Friday), and “Manon” (in three acts) at 7.30pm on July 19 (Saturday) as well as 2.30pm and 7.30pm on July 20 (Sunday). All performances will be at the Grand Theatre, Hong Kong Cultural Centre. Tickets priced from $180 to $880 are now available at all URBTIX outlets. Half-price concessions will be granted to senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. (Limited tickets for full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients are available on a first-come, first-served basis.)

For programme enquiries, call 2268 7323; for ticketing enquiries and reservations call 2734 9009. Internet bookings are available at . For credit card telephone bookings, call 2111 5999. Visit for more information on the programme.

Ends/Monday, June 23, 2008
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