Romeo and Juliet (MacMillan)

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This article is about the MacMillan ballet to Prokofiev's score. For John Cranko's ballet, see Romeo and Juliet (Cranko). For Sean Lavery's setting of the balcony scene, see Romeo and Juliet (Lavery). For Peter Martins' ballet, see Romeo + Juliet (ballet). For other uses, see Romeo and Juliet (disambiguation).
Romeo and Juliet
Choreographer Kenneth MacMillan
Music Sergei Prokofiev
Premiere 1965 – Royal Opera House, London
Original ballet company The Royal Ballet
Genre Ballet
Type Classical

Choreographer Sir Kenneth MacMillan's Royal Ballet production of Sergei Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet premiered at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden on 9 February 1965.[1]

MacMillan had previously choreographed the balcony scene for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable to dance in September 1964 for Canadian Television.[2] This experience made him seem a good candidate to choreograph the entire ballet for Covent Garden, when the Soviet Union refused to allow Leonid Lavrovsky's classic production to tour to London.[3] MacMillan prepared his version with the blessing of Frederick Ashton.[4]

Though MacMillan had conceived the ballet for Lynn Seymour and Christopher Gable, for "bureaucratic reasons" Margot Fonteyn and Rudolph Nureyev danced the opening night, to MacMillan's disappointment.[5] Fonteyn and Nureyev brought new life to the characters, as did the set and costume designs by Nicholas Georgiadis; Fonteyn, considered to be near retirement, embarked upon a rejuvenated career with a partnership with Nureyev.

The production was filmed and received a cinematic release in 1966.

Original cast[edit]


  1. ^ Jann Parry, p285
  2. ^ Jann Parry, p274
  3. ^ Jann Parry, p275
  4. ^ Jann Parry, p276
  5. ^ Macaulay, Alastair. "Sex, violence, and Kenneth MacMillan" in Reading dance: a gathering of memoirs, reportage, criticism, profiles: p. 422


  • Gottlieb, Robert. Reading Dance: A Gathering of Memoirs, Reportage, Criticism, Profiles, Interviews, and Some Uncategorizable Extras. Pantheon, 2008.
  • Parry, Jann. Different Drummer: The Life of Kenneth MacMillan. London: Faber & Faber, 2009. ISBN 978-0-571-24302-2

External links[edit]