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Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty - The Lyceum Theatre , Sheffield

Published by: Paul Tyree on 22nd May 2013 | View all blogs by Paul Tyree

Matthew Bourne's Sleeping Beauty

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A Gothic Fairy Tale

The Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield

Matthew Bourne's reworking of the Sleeping Beauty Tchaikovsky Ballet is a sumptuous and incredibly rewarding evening at the theatre whether you're a ballet buff or not. Immediately accessible, hugely funny, exciting and indeed surprising this is ballet for the 21st century.
The story is mostly as you remember, Briar Rose or Aurora does indeed fall victim to an old curse, but this time it is to the son of the evil dark fairy rather than the fairy herself. An old slight taken on by the descendant of the slighted and a need for revenge against beauty places us squarely in the fairy tale genre. It also creates a wonderful villain in Adam Maskell as the dark and brooding villain out for blood and the ultimate revenge against the innocent beauty. Indeed in the standing ovation at the end there were several old ladies who were reaching out for him as though they would love to throw their knickers at him had they remembered to put any on.
Hannah Vasallo as Beauty embodies the name not only physically but also through the dance. Dominic North as her prince is also marvellously emotive and convincing but to pick anyone out from this amazing cast of dancers seems almost unfair. Everyone performs wonderfully, but it truly is in the direction and the additions to the story that really make this production stand out.
Add to that the fact that the sets are amazing, the costumes brilliant and this becomes easily the finest ballet that I've probably ever seen. Luckily I took my 10yr old daughter as well and she was transfixed all the way through. I wont spoil things for future audiences but let's just say that 'baby Aurora' really stole the show.
At the end there was an ovation in The Lyceum the like of which I have never heard before. It lasted for several minutes and was easily the longest round of applause I've ever heard the Lyceum audience give in my experience for any production since the theatre was re-opened.  I have to say it was richly deserved.
This then, if you've never experienced ballet before is the one you should fight tooth and nail to get a ticket for. And as it was standing room only on opening night, you might have to.
Playing until Saturday. DON'T MISS!!!!!

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Wed 22 May 2:00pm   £17.00 - £27.00 Book Tickets
Wed 22 May 7:45pm   £22.00 - £32.00 Book Tickets
Thu 23 May 7:45pm   £22.00 - £32.00 Book Tickets
Fri 24 May 7:45pm   £25.00 - £35.00 Book Tickets
Sat 25 May 2:00pm   £22.00 - £32.00 Book Tickets
Sat 25 May 7:45pm   £25.00 - £35.00  


The Lyceum plays host to a huge variety of touring productions every year, including large-scale musicals, drama, children’s shows, opera, ballet and contemporary dance.
With over 1000 seats, the Lyceum is a beautiful late 19th Century building located on Tudor Square, close to the Crucible Theatre.

  • 55 Norfolk St, Sheffield, S1 1DA, South Yorkshire, United Kingdom
  • Box Office: 0114 249 6000 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 0114 249 6000 FREE  end_of_the_skype_highlighting


1 Comment

  • Cameron Lowe
    by Cameron Lowe 5 years ago
    Thanks, Paul. This sounds like a great night out and a very appreciative audience. What's not to love?
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