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Courtesy Alberta Ballet

Go down the rabbit hole with Alberta Ballet’s Alice in Wonderland ballet

By Aurora Anderson, March 14 2017 —

Alberta Ballet is revitalizing a classic that they hope will wow audiences both young and old. Based on an original production from 2004, Alice in Wonderland is set to take the stage from March 16–18.

Edmund Stripe, the artist in residence who choreographed the piece, is excited for “the innovation, forward thinking, versatile dancers” that the production offers to audiences.

“[Alberta Ballet] is Canada’s second-largest ballet company and is world-renowned for the contemporary and classical productions that encompass its repertoire,” Stripe says.

Stripe was contacted in 2004 by Alberta Ballet artistic director Jean Grand-Maître to stage a version of Lewis Carroll’s stories. He encompasses both Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass into one ballet, accompanied by music from William Walter, Kurt Well, Dmitri Shostakovich, Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel and Percy Grainger.

“The story is well-known, but this version is different. It’s comedic, light-hearted, family-oriented, [with a] universal appeal,” Grand-Maître says.

Stripe says Carroll’s stories are heavily based on language, wordplay and puns, making it difficult to adapt for a ballet. He says he chose characters from Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland “that worked visually.”

Audiences can expect to see the Red Queen, the Caterpillar, Alice, the White Knight and the beloved Rabbit in this production.

Stripe hopes Alice in Wonderland will be popular, as he says it offers a family friendly environment to take a break from the stress of life.

Stripe was involved in the original production and says there are a few returning cast members that starred in the debut shows 13 years ago. He is excited to see it produced again.

“To see the production again as a whole, it’s a favourite production of mine,” he says.

Alice in Wonderland will show at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium from March 16–18. Tickets are available online.

For more information visit albertaballet50.com

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