The Royal Ballet presents the world premiere of The Cellist by Cathy Marston, a new ballet inspired by the momentous life and career of celebrated cellist Jacqueline du Pré. Jacqueline is regarded as one of the 20th century’s most outstanding cellists, her brilliant career was cut short by the onset of multiple sclerosis at the age of 28.
This intimate portrait of Jacqueline’s life is set to a commissioned score by Philip Feeney and features sections of Schubert’s Trout Quintet, Faure’s Cello Sonata and Elgar’s Cello Concerto, a score regarded as a benchmark in du Pré’s career and one she performed on numerous occasions to international acclaim.
Cathy Marston has a long association with The Royal Ballet, creating her first work for the Company, Figure in Progress in 1997. She was appointed Associate Artist 2002 – 2007 and created a number of works for the Linbury Studio Theatre and also choreographed for The Royal Opera. The Cellist is Cathy’s first work for the main stage and follows her highly acclaimed ballets Jane Eyre and Victoria for Northern Ballet and the award winning The Suit for Ballet Black.
The Cellist features Royal Ballet Principals Lauren Cuthbertson, Matthew Ball and Marcelino Sambé. Dramaturg and co-scenario is by Edward Kemp, design is by Hildegard Bachtler, costumes by Bregie van Balen and Lighting is by Jon Clar.
The evening also includes Jerome Robbins’ much loved ballet Dances at a Gathering. Choreographed by Robbins in 1969 for New York City Ballet and set to music by Frédéric Chopin, the ballet is an exercise in pure dance for five couples and is regarded as a masterpiece of subtlety and invention. Dances at a Gathering was last performed by The Royal Ballet in 2009 and this revival features debuts across the Company.