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Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty set for screen debut

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: August 08, 2014

By Rob Smyth

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A NEW PRODUCTION of a popular show is heading to Staffordshire in the form of a specially created film.

Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty will be on show from 7.30pm on Wednesday, January 21 at Stafford's Gatehouse Theatre.

A new production, created by one of Britain's most successful choreographers to celebrate the 25 year anniversary of his company, New Adventures, premiered at Sadler's Wells Theatre, London in November 2012 to rave reviews and has just completed a successful UK tour, selling out at many venues.

The magic of the performance has been captured by Leopard Films in the form of a new film.

Sleeping Beauty sees Bourne return to the music of Tchaikovsky to complete the trio of masterworks that started with Nutcracker! and the international hit Swan Lake.

The story begins in 1890 at the christening of Princess Aurora, a time when fairies and vampires fed the imagination, before moving forward in time to the modern day.

A spokesman for the show said: "A sumptuous, gothic fairytale with a twist on the classic story, this production will appeal to the younger 'Twilight' generation as well as traditional dance fans who will enjoy the masterful choreography and the trademark wit expected from Matthew Bourne.

"The choreographer's new scenario introduces several characters not seen in Petipa's famous Ballet or Grimm's fairy tale: the Royal Family is headed by King Benedict and Queen Eleanor, Princess Aurora's romantic interest is not a Prince but the royal gamekeeper, Leo and representing the central forces of good and evil are Count Lilac (the King of the Fairies) and the Dark Fairy, Carabosse.

"In another innovation, Bourne has created the character of Cardoc, Carabosse's sinister, but charming son.

"The sensational cast for Sleeping Beauty features many familiar faces from previous Matthew Bourne productions.

"Dominic North, who with Christopher Trenfield created the role of 'Leo', holds the distinction of appearing in more New Adventures productions than any other dancer – including the role of The Prince in Swan Lake 3D which screened in cinemas in 2012.

"Hannah Vassallo and Ashley Shaw created the central role of 'Aurora' with both dancers having had major parts in other Matthew Bourne hits like Nutcracker! and Cinderella."

Directed by Ross Macgibbon and produced by Fiona Morris, the production was filmed at the Bristol Hippodrome, UK in May 2013.

This screening is the latest new addition for the Gatehouse's new season after the venue invested in state of the art cinema projector equipment. Tickets cost £10 and can be booked by calling 01785 254653.

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