Cape Town City Ballet Changes International Guest Artist for Upcoming Production of GISELLE – Broadway World

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Cape Town City Ballet has announced a change in the programme for its production of Maina Gielgud’s GISELLE. GISELLE will be presented from 18 March until 9 April 2022 in the Artscape Opera House. Ksenia Ovsyanick, Principal Ballerina with Staatsballett Berlin, will dance the role of Giselle opposite Vadim Muntagirov (Principal of The Royal Ballet) as Albrecht at the performances on 19, 21, 23 and 25 March. She replaces Tatiana Melnik, who was originally scheduled to perform as part of the programme.
International guest artist Brandon Lawrence (Principal at Birmingham Royal Ballet) excitingly also joins Cape Town City Ballet at select performances in the role of Albrecht, partnering Cape Town City Ballet’s Leanè Theunissen as Giselle. Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, under the baton of conductor Brandon Phillips, perform alongside the dancers at various performances. Seating remains strictly limited due to social distancing and government regulations. All Covid-19 regulations will be in place including social distancing and wearing of masks throughout.
Suzette Raymond, Chairperson of both Cape Town City Ballet and Friends of Cape Town City Ballet, says, “Cape Town City Ballet notes with concern the current crisis in Ukraine. The CTCB empathises with artists from the warring countries who are caught in the cross-fire. The CTCB hopes that rationality will prevail and that the arts will be able to bring healing, comfort and understanding between nations.”
“The CTCB empathises with Tatiana Melnik about her fear to travel to South Africa under the current crisis and the CTCB accepts her request to withdraw from the production. Vadim Muntagirov is contracted to the CTCB on his British citizenship.”
Principal Ballerina with Staatsballett Berlin, Ksenia Ovsyanick started her training in Belorussian State Ballet College, followed by winning a scholarship at Prix de Lausanne to come to English National Ballet School. Her career started with English National Ballet and over the years she performed on stages around the world including: Opera National de Paris Palais Garner, Royal Opera House Muscat, Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, Royal Albert Hall London and Buckingham Palace. She participated in gala performances in China, Singapore, India, Russia, Chile Greece, Sweden, Spain, Italy, France, Denmark, Latvia, Belarus, among others, as well as participating in the closing ceremony of Olympics in London 2012.
At the age of 20 she danced her first Giselle and was nominated for English National Ballet’s Emerging dancer award. In March 2012 Ksenia had a title role of Firebird choreographed on her in the world premiere of “Firebird” by George Williamson, which brought her the Critics’ Circle National Dance Award for an outstanding performance. In 2013 Ms Ovsyanick was nominated for “Prix Benois de la Danse” best female dancer award and in 2018 she won “Dance Open” international Ballet Award in St. Petersburg.
Ksenia has created roles with choreographers such as Nacho Duato, Liam Scarlett, George Williamson, Alexej Ratmansky, Itzik Galilli, Yabin Wang and performed ballets by Kenneth Macmillan, John Cranko, Jiri Kylian, George Balanchine, Serge Lifar and Wayne Eagling among many others. In 2016 she joined Staatsballett Berlin as Principal Ballerina, performing leading roles in Nacho Duato’s Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet, the title role in ballet Erde created on her by Duato, as well as Rubies and Diamonds in Balanchine’s Jewels, Giselle, Onegin, Don Quixote, La Bayadere and others.
GISELLE is a much-loved ballet which presents a romantic story of innocent love and betrayal portrayed in two acts. Giselle, a naive and beautiful peasant girl who loves to dance, unsuspectingly falls in love with a philandering nobleman, Albrecht. He disguises himself as a peasant while pursuing her affections and when the deceit is revealed Giselle is inconsolable. In discovering that he is already betrothed, she dies of a broken heart.
The story continues in the moonlit land of the Wilies, a mysterious landscape inhabited by the vengeful spirits of virgin brides who never reached their wedding day. The ghostly Wilies torment Albrecht as he appears in search of the spirit of Giselle. The duality of the body and spirit, evocation of the supernatural, and the tale of undying love and devotion endears this quintessentially romantic ballet to a universal audience.
GISELLE is performed to the music of Adolphe Adam , with choreography by Maina Gielgud, after Jean Coralli & Jules Perrot. The stellar creative team again includes the powerhouse team of Designer Peter Cazalet for Costume Design and Décor, assisted by Michael Mitchell, and Lighting Design by Wilhelm Disbergen. GISELLE will be presented at Artscape Opera House from 18 March to 9 April 2022.
Tickets range from R350 to R750 for performances featuring International Guest Artist/s and accompanied by Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra. Tickets cost from R250 to R395 for performances to recorded music. Tickets to matinee performances cost from R175 to R295. Bookings can be made at Artscape Dial-A-Seat 021 421 7695 or through Computicket.
THIS CASTING SCHEDULE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE IN THE EVENT OF NECESSITY.
For more information about the Cape Town City Ballet, visit their website here.
Photo Credits: Pat Bromilow Downing
Pictured: Ksenia Ovsyanick
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