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Male dancer, shirtless, standing with his arms wide and a female dancer in a white dress is behind him, holding herself up on his shoulders with her legs split in parallel with the male dancers arms

Preserving the Passion: New Romeo & Juliet Exhibition

Christopher Gable CBE and Massimo Moricone’s Romeo & Juliet has survived fire, flood and the changing fashions of more than three decades.

Ahead of the ballet’s much-anticipated revival and tour this spring, a new exhibition at Leeds University’s Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery will bring together drawings, props, costumes and photographs from our archive to tell the eventful story of the making of a classic.

Set to Prokofiev’s electrifying score, the 1991 take on Shakespeare’s timeless tragedy became one of our greatest success. The Sunday Times hailed it as ‘Triumphant… full-blooded’, ‘sexy’ – and rightly predicted it would be ‘a box office cert for years to come’. A slew of awards, an Olivier nomination and a Christmas Day screening on the BBC followed, and over the next 20 years it notched up more than 500 performances across the world.

Jane Regan and William Walker rehearse their roles os Juliet and Romeo while choreographer Massimo Moricone watches.
Collage of Anthony Crickmay photographs of Jayne Regan and William Walker as Juliet and Romeo

But, as Shakespeare said elsewhere, the course of true love never did run smooth. In 2001 arsonists destroyed our former headquarters and much of our archive, including costumes from Romeo & Juliet, just three weeks before opening night. Then the catastrophic floods that struck Leeds on Boxing Day in 2015 wrecked sets and costumes at our stores in Bramley. Our ongoing Rekindle the Romance appeal has supported the recreation, repair and updating of Lez Brotherston OBE’s intricate period costumes and spectacular wooden set. 

'Christopher Gable CBE and Massimo Morricone’s Romeo & Juliet is a cherished gem in the world of dance and a cornerstone of Northern Ballet’s history. This exhibition captures the spirit and creativity that defines the Company and we are honoured that the University of Leeds has chosen to showcase this iconic production, a work that holds a special place in our hearts. As we prepare for its long-awaited revival this spring, the spotlight on Romeo & Juliet is a testament to the enduring impact of Shakespeare's tale.'

Federico Bonelli, Artistic Director of Northern Ballet

The Northern Ballet Archive, donated to the University of Leeds in 2021, tells the 50-year story of the Company from its foundation to the present. This exhibition will document the production, evolution and sometimes the complete recreation of a cornerstone of our repertoire – and celebrate the return of this beloved work to the stage in our home town of Leeds.

The exhibition will be open to the public from the 9 January to the 22 Mar 2024. Performances of Romeo & Juliet will take place at Leeds Grand Theatre from the 8-16 March 2024

Male dancer, shirtless, standing with his arms wide and a female dancer in a white dress is behind him, holding herself up on his shoulders with her legs split in parallel with the male dancers arms
Dancers embracing each other in a black and white photo
The choreographer and director of Romeo & Juliet discuss movement in the studio

Photos Anthony Crickmay and Northern Ballet.

Tour Dates
8 Mar 2024 - 16 Mar 2024
Audio Described Performance

Leeds Grand Theatre

From £21
2024-03-08
  • 19:30
2024-03-09
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
2024-03-10
  • 14:30
2024-03-12
  • 19:30
2024-03-13
  • 19:30
2024-03-14
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
2024-03-15
  • 19:30
2024-03-16
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
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Live Orchestra
2 Apr 2024 - 6 Apr 2024
Audio Described Performance

Sheffield Lyceum Theatre

2024-04-02
  • 19:45
2024-04-03
  • 19:45
2024-04-04
  • 14:00
  • 19:45
2024-04-05
  • 19:45
2024-04-06
  • 14:00
  • 19:45
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Live Orchestra
30 Apr 2024 - 4 May 2024
Audio Described Performance

Nottingham Theatre Royal

From £15
2024-04-30
  • 19:30
2024-05-01
  • 19:30
2024-05-02
  • 14:00
  • 19:30
2024-05-03
  • 19:30
2024-05-04
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
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Live Orchestra
14 May 2024 - 18 May 2024
Audio Described Performance

Norwich Theatre Royal

From £29.50
2024-05-14
  • 19:30
2024-05-15
  • 19:30
2024-05-16
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
2024-05-17
  • 19:30
2024-05-18
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
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Live Orchestra
28 May 2024 - 1 Jun 2024
Audio Described Performance

London Sadler's Wells

From £15
2024-05-28
  • 19:30
2024-05-29
  • 19:30
2024-05-30
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
2024-05-31
  • 19:30
2024-06-01
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
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Live Orchestra
19 Sep 2024 - 28 Sep 2024
Audio Described Performance

Royal Shakespeare Theatre

2024-09-19
  • 19:15
2024-09-20
  • 19:15
2024-09-21
  • 13:15
  • 19:15
2024-09-22
  • 14:00
2024-09-24
  • 19:15
2024-09-25
  • 19:15
2024-09-26
  • 13:15
  • 19:15
2024-09-27
  • 19:15
2024-09-28
  • 13:15
  • 19:15
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Recorded Music
3 Oct 2024 - 5 Oct 2024
Audio Described Performance

Southampton Mayflower

£12-£43.50
2024-10-03
  • 19:30
2024-10-04
  • 14:00
  • 19:30
2024-10-05
  • 14:00
  • 19:30
On sale 16 February
Recorded Music
9 Oct 2024 - 12 Oct 2024

Canterbury Marlowe Theatre

£17-£46
2024-10-09
  • 19:30
2024-10-10
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
2024-10-11
  • 19:30
2024-10-12
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
On sale 9 April
Recorded Music
23 Oct 2024 - 26 Oct 2024
Audio Described Performance

Newcastle Theatre Royal

2024-10-23
  • 19:30
2024-10-24
  • 14:00
  • 19:30
2024-10-25
  • 19:30
2024-10-26
  • 14:30
  • 19:30
On sale 25 April
Recorded Music

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