Jessica Harris attended the launch of BRB’s new season.
Birmingham Royal Ballet’s 2024-25 season promises to reach people both locally and globally with an impressive range of productions and projects that were unveiled at its launch on 1st February.
Continuing its international work, the company will perform its runaway success Black Sabbath – The Ballet in Rotterdam as part of the Holland Dance Festival in June 2024, whilst advanced talks are underway about touring it to the USA in the summer of 2025.
BRB2, recently established by Birmingham Royal Ballet and made up of some of the best young ballet graduates from around the world (pictured), will tour Carlos Acosta’s Classical Selection to venues across England in spring and summer 2024. Also under preparation is an all-new programme which BRB2 will be touring nationwide in the spring of 2025. In Acosta’s view, creating a repertoire especially for these young dancers helps to maximise opportunities for them to develop their skills.
Closer to home, the company’s LEAP programme will continue to offer the chance for young people to gain hands-on experience of backstage work, develop new skills, and open up career options in stage management, costuming and other technical areas.
Other highlights of the season include:
• The company’s first ever visit to Iceland to perform Acosta’s Classical Selection in the summer.
• A run of Sir Frederick Ashton’s La Fille Mal Gardée, including performances at the Birmingham Hippodrome in the autumn, as part of the 2024-28 Ashton Worldwide Festival. A special Ashton Foundation Insight masterclass, featuring Carlos Acosta and Sandra Madgwick coaching BRB dancers in the roles of Colas and Lise will take place at Birmingham’s Elmhurst Ballet School.
• The world premiere of Luna in October. This is the third part of BRB’s Birmingham Trilogy and is inspired by pioneering and socially enterprising women of Birmingham featured in Louise Palfreyman’s book, Once Upon a Time in Birmingham: Women Who Dare to Dream.
• The return of Sir Peter Wright’s The Nutcracker in the festive season leading up to Christmas.
• Sir David Bintley’s Cinderella, one of the company’s most popular ballets, which will tour nationally, in addition to Birmingham performances, in spring 2025.
In ongoing efforts to open up ballet to all, BRB’s Freefall Dance Company will continue to provide a platform for learning disabled dancers, the company’s ground-breaking work on exploring virtual and augmented reality to enable access and creativity will be further developed, and touch-tours and audio-described performances will help to make performances more accessible.
And later this month, students of all ages will take to the Birmingham Hippodrome stage for a performance of Sleeping Beauty Dreams, profiling the depth of talent found in Birmingham and the West Midlands.
The 2024-25 Season aims high and promises to do much to fulfil BRB’s mission to tour world-class ballet to the widest possible audiences in the UK and beyond. It also reflects the company’s ambition to champion the name of Birmingham far and wide. Not only is it drawing international talent into the city, but it is also fostering skills, opportunity and aspiration amongst local young people. What could be more important?
Carlos Acosta is Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Director. For further information visit brb.org.uk.
Pic- Johan Persson