Theatre in Wales

Theatre, dance and performance companies (professional)

  Ballet Cymru

Ballet Cymru

Unit 1a, Wern Industrial Estate
NP10 9FQ

  current production | past productions
phone | ffôn 01633 892927
e-mail address | e-bost
web site | wefan
Darius James
Jenny Isaacs
artistic policy
polisi artistig
Ballet Cymru is an international touring chamber ballet that is distinctively Welsh. It uses the classical ballet technique to explore new elements in theatre and create work that is innovative, inspiring and accessible. Using powerful and timeless stories the company challenges its dancers to interpret some of the finest characters in literature.

Since gaining Revenue Status from the Arts Council of Wales, Ballet Cymru has begun to realise its potential as a national company for Wales and continues to receive excellent reviews for its work in national newspapers and magazines, including Dance Europe, The Independent and The Guardian.
Ballet Cymru is proud to be a collaborative company and the quality of its collaborations continues to exceed expectations with partnerships with artists and organisations including Sinfonia Cymru, Citrus Arts, The Riverfront Theatre, Cerys Matthews and Catrin Finch.
The company's commitment to education has also developed immensely with the Paul Hamlyn Foundation DUETS programme in collaboration with Rubicon Dance, an established Ballet Associate Programme, international summer school Riverfront Summer Dance, inspirational work in schools, and development opportunities for graduate and professional dancers.
Ballet Cymru recently moved into its new base in Newport, which boasts one of the largest dance spaces in Wales, and is hired regularly by The Royal Academy of Dancing and the Cecchetti Ballet Society.
Awards and Nominations
Winners: Critics Circle National Dance Award 2006.
Nomination: National Dance Award as Best Independent Company 2012.
Winners: Best Large Scale Dance Production 2013 at the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards.
2 Nominations: Best Dance Production 2012 at the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards.
brief history
hanes cryno
Ballet Cymru was established in 1986 by Artistic Director, Darius James and Administrative Director, Yvonne Williams, to be a beacon for quality classical ballet in Wales. Now Ballet Cymru is one of Arts Council of Wales’ newest revenue funded organisations, (brought into the portfolio in 2011) and plays a vital role in the dance ecology of Wales. Over its long history, it has established itself as a company which seeks to inspire a love of ballet amongst as wide an audience as possible. It is continually seeking out ways to improve how it does this through collaborations, training and creating high quality accessible work.

Each year the Company tours to around some 50 venues, performs to audience in excess of 12,000 and undertakes education work for around 2300 young people and adults across the UK.
selected past productions
rhai cynhyrchiadau'r gorffenol
Romeo a Juliet
A Midsummer Night's Dream
TIR with Cerys Matthews
Roald Dahl’s Little Red Riding Hood and the Three Little Pigs
Under Milk Wood
How Green Was My Valley

Romeo a Juliet
Winner of Best Large Scale Dance Production 2013 at the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards.

From forth the fatal loins of these two foes 
A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life
Critics Circle Award winning company, Ballet Cymru, present an extraordinary adaptation of Shakespeare’s masterpiece ‘Romeo a Juliet’.
Intense fighting, passionate duets and universal themes echo through dramatic and lyrical choreography. Exquisite costumes and extraordinary video projections create a world of danger and excitement where two young lovers are caught in an age old feud.
‘Romeo a Juliet’ is a dynamic and unique collaboration between 3 of Wales’ outstanding arts organisations, Ballet Cymru, Coreo Cymru (The Dance Creative Producer for Wales) and the Riverfront Theatre in Newport.
‘Romeo a Juliet’ features costumes by Georg Meyer-Wiel who studied at The Royal College of Art and has created costumes for some of the world’s leading companies including Rambert Dance Company and Australian Dance Theatre.
But soft, what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
‘These young dancers created a taut, committed atmosphere on stage, and the audience, comprised of every age group from 5 to 95, were gripped from start to finish. What a refreshing change it was to see this youthful group, brimming over with enthusiasm and commitment, dancing a work so relevant to today's demographic and which will do so much to bring in new audiences and keep their interest. Ballet Cymru, I salute you!’
Amanda Jennings, Dance Europe June 2013

A Midsummer Night's Dream
Nominated Best Dance Production 2013 at the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards.
An outstanding adaptation of Shakespeare’s timeless play features breath-taking choreography danced by some of the finest dancers around. This vibrant and dramatic production features Mendelssohn's joyous music, choreography by the company’s Artistic Director Darius James and critically acclaimed costumes by Welsh Designer Yvonne Greenleaf.
The Queen of the Fairies Titania, and Puck the mischievous messenger, inhabit the supernatural fairy kingdom. Bottom and his boot wearing “Rude Mechanicals” present their famous play Pyramus and Thisbe. And finally the lovers, caught in a thrilling web of mistaken identity and confusion finally find their way through the Athenian forest to an unforgettable and joyous reconciliation.

TIR with Cerys Matthews
Nominated Best Dance Production 2012 at the Theatre Critics of Wales Awards.
Cerys’ iconic album of Welsh Folk Music, ‘TIR’ is the inspiration for choreographers Darius James and Amy Doughty, who have used 11 of the songs from the album to create a unique work especially for the dancers of Ballet Cymru. Cerys herself played the music live on stage with the company at venues in Newport, London and Caernarfon in 2012 and again in Newport in 2013.
Cerys Matthews is a renowned and admired Welsh singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, author and broadcaster. In May 2013 Cerys Matthews received the Sony Music Gold Award for Best Music Broadcaster, and in June 2014 was awarded an MBE for her services to music. Cerys is one of Ballet Cymru’s patrons and is a keen supporter of the Company’s work.

Roald Dahl’s Little Red Riding Hood and the Three Little Pigs
Ballet Cymru were granted permission from The Dahl Foundation to produce two works based on sections of Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes, Little Red Riding Hood and Three Little Pigs.

Both works were based on the outstanding and internationally recognised musical scores by composer Paul Patterson. The two scores were commissioned by The Dahl Foundation and have become children’s classics played all over the globe. The “Little Red Riding Hood” score featured in a 1995 BBC Christmas Day special featuring the voices of Ian Holm, Julie Walters and Danny DeVito. Now Patterson’s dazzling scores are set in dance for the first time.

This outstanding classical ballet was choreographed by Darius James and Amy Doughty with music by composer Paul Patterson, costumes by Steve Denton and a stunning lighting design by John Bishop. With the support of the Dahl Foundation, the production toured throughout the UK, including Sadler’s Wells. At the premiere in Newport, Felicity Dahl, Roald’s wife and Donald Sturrock, Dahl’s biographer, were in attendance.

‘In Little Red Riding Hood and its companion piece, The Three Little Pigs, Darius James and Amy Doughty have created choreography that uses the simplest of means to capture imaginatively the wit of Dahl's verse and the charm of Paul Patterson's music. Not too short, and not too long, the evening was a complete delight from start to finish’

Jonathan Gray, Dancing Times

Under Milk Wood
The classic play by Dylan Thomas is successfully interpreted in dance, ballet and innovative physical theatre, with all its dark humor, vivid characters and visionary language. Join Mrs. Ogmore-Pritchard, relentlessly bossing her two dead husbands, or Captain Cat reliving his seafaring times. Watch Organ Morgan, obsessed with his music, and Polly Garter pining for her dead lover. Enter the bible black village and swim in the fishing boat bobbing sea.
‘Under Milk Wood’ features a score by Macmillan Award winning composer Thomas Hewitt Jones, paintings by Welsh artist Jeremy Thomas and narrative delivered by outstanding welsh actor and Company Patron, Gwyn Vaughan Jones.

How Green Was My Valley
Based on the bestselling novel by Richard Llewellyn, an Oscar winning film and an authentic BBC Wales television series, this outstanding production features choreography from Creative Wales Award winner Darius James.
‘MacMillan Young Composer of the Year’ Thomas Hewitt Jones provides an atmospheric and stunning new commissioned score, with innovative sets and costumes by The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.
‘How Green Was My Valley’ featured live music performed by Thomas Hewitt Jones and the City of Newport Male Voice Choir in a unique collaboration.

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