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Daring Production Of Romeo And Juliet

Daring Production Of Romeo And Juliet

Who: Russian National Ballet Theatre
Where: Civic Theatre
When: Monday September 12, 2005

HUNTER people will be among the first in the world to see the Russian National Ballet Theatre's nf new production of Romeo and Juliet, featuring a nude scene between the pair of star- crossed lovers.

Tour producer Graham Hutchison said that for the first time Shakespeare's classic would include a full frontal nude scene, as the production of the ballet had first intended.

``When the version was put together in the 1930s a nude scene was originally included in it,'' Hutchinson said.

``To put the nude scene in context the scene is in the bedroom and Romeo and Juliet were teenagers.

``But it was considered highly inappropriate in those times so it was turned into a kissing scene.

``Vladimir Moiseev [formerly with the Bolshoi Ballet decided it was time to update the ballet for modern times and restore the nude scene to it.'' Hutchison said there was some concern in the community but that disappeared after people saw that the scene is portrayed as a sensual one, not a pornographic one.

``There have been many contemporary dance productions that have included nudity in them. It is not uncommon,'' he said.

``There were a few church groups that originally objected to the nudity, but that has all died down.

``When we were in Melbourne an 80-year-old who saw the production came up to us and said it was beautiful, it wasn't dirty.

``If an 80-year-old wasn't offended by the nudity, I'm sure the rest of the public will understand why it was included.'' Moiseev, who comes from a dynasty of Russian dancers, (his grandmother danced for Stalin) joined colleagues in 2001 to set up the Russian National Ballet Theatre as an alternative to the Bolshoi Theatre.

The company's has prepared an unashamedly classical program for its two-month tour of Australia will include Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty and the Nutcracker Suite.

The troupe is made up of 60 top dancers, bringing with them 18 stage sets and 600 costumes.

The performance will take place at Newcastle Civic Theatre on Monday, September 12.

The first performance, Swan Lake, will start at 5.30pm. It will be followed by Romeo and Juliet. VIP ticket holders receive champagne, best seats in the house, get to meet and be photographed with the stars and an autographed merchandise pack.

Tickets are $67.90 for adults, $62.90 for aged pensioner, $59.90 for secondary students, and $59.90 each for groups of 10 or more. VIP tickets are $550. To make bookings, call 492 1977 or email boxoffice@civic theatrenewcastle.com.au

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