Dance superstar Sylvie Guillem’s final UK performance to take place at Birmingham Hippodrome


Ajš/ByeBirmingham Hippodrome announces the return of dance superstar Sylvie Guillem for her last ever UK performances on Tuesday 8 and Wednesday 9 September 2015. Sylvie Guillem will be performing in Life in Progress featuring both existing and new works by choreographers who have influenced her contemporary career.

Guillem performs two new works including a solo by choreographer and Sadler’s Wells Associate Artist Akram Khan, and a pas de deux with Italian dancer Emanuela Montanari from La Scala. The new duet is choreographed by Russell Maliphant with lighting by Michael Hulls, both of whom collaborated with her on the award-winning PUSH which she performed at Birmingham Hippodrome as part of International Dance Festival Birmingham 2012.

Life in Progress also includes Mats Ek’s touching and poignant solo, Bye, which was made especially for her and has been performed previously as part of the 6000 Miles Away programme, part of International Dance Festival Birmingham 2014. It is completed by William Forsythe’s Duo performed by two male dancers, which premiered in 1996.
Life in Progress receives its world premiere in Modena on 31 March 2015.

Sylvie Guillem is also today announced as the recipient of a special award at this year’s Olivier Awards, celebrating her achievements over the course of her career. The Olivier Awards with MasterCard, run by the Society of London Theatre (SOLT), take place on Sunday 12 April 2015. Highlights from the awards will be broadcast on ITV.

Stuart Griffiths, Chief Executive of Birmingham Hippodrome said “Sylvie Guillem’s performances have been major highlights of both the 2012 and 2014 International Dance Festivals so I am honoured that Ms Guillem has chosen Birmingham Hippodrome as the venue for her last ever performances in the UK.

“I am also delighted that dance lovers across the West Midlands and beyond have the unique chance of seeing these final performances here in Birmingham. We expect huge demand for tickets which go on sale on 19 March.”

A dancer renowned the world over with an extensive career at the Paris Opera Ballet, The Royal Ballet and Tokyo Ballet, Guillem has played many iconic roles in ballets by Kenneth MacMillan, Maurice Béjart, Frederick Ashton, William Forsythe and Mats Ek. She has also diversified as a dancer into the world of contemporary dance, performing acclaimed works such as PUSH, Sacred Monsters and 6000 Miles Away.

Sylvie Guillem CBE, was born in Paris. As a child, she trained in gymnastics under the instruction of her mother, a gymnastics teacher. In 1977 aged 11, she began training at the Paris Opera Ballet School, and in 1981 joined the company’s corps de ballet. She was promoted to the rank of “Etoile” by Rudolf Nureyev at the age of 19. Since then she has performed all the leading roles of the classical repertoire with the world’s leading companies including The Royal Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, Kirov, Tokyo Ballet, Australian Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and La Scala.

Her awards include the Officier de la Légion d’Honneur, Officier dans l’Ordre National du Mérite, Officier des Arts et Lettres, and, in Britain, an honorary CBE.

Life in Progress is co-produced with Les Nuits de Fourvière and Sylvie Guillem.

Life in Progress will be performed at Birmingham Hippodrome on Tuesday 8 and Wednesday 9 September 2015. Tickets are priced £15-£75 and can be booked online or by telephone on 0844 338 5000. Performance times: 7.30pm. 5% transaction charge applies (excl. cash sales in person) postage from £1. Phone calls from 5p per minute. Prices and discounting subject to change.

Tickets go on sale to Birmingham Hippodrome Friends at 10am on Thursday 19 March with general on sale from 11am.

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