Ballet Theatre of Maryland marks its return to Maryland Hall with the celebrated romantic ballet “Giselle,” October 22-24. After 19 months of outdoor and virtual performances, “Giselle” is the company’s first production in a traditional theater setting with a live, in-person audience. This haunting work, featuring coveted virtuoso roles and an iconic “white ballet act,” is a beloved 180-year-old story about love and self-sacrifice.
“While ‘Giselle’ premiered in 1841, it remains fresh for performers and audience members alike,” said Ballet Theatre of Maryland Artistic Director Nicole Kelsch. “We’re drawn to the rich history it represents in the ballet canon and its demanding choreography, but there’s more to it than that. This story about young love and betrayal is truly timeless. Although the drama is larger than life, [the ballet’s] themes of forgiveness and self-sacrifice resonate for everyone.”
These themes are integral to the ballet’s lead character, a young peasant girl with a weak heart. Giselle falls in love with Albrecht, a nobleman in disguise, but her heart falters and stops when she learns that he is betrothed to someone else. Beyond the grave, she joins a sisterhood of vengeful spirits called wilis who dance unsuspecting men to their deaths. Albrecht falls within their power, but Giselle demonstrates the power of her love and forgiveness by protecting him until the light of day sends the wilis back to their graves.
Just in time for Halloween, these ghostly elements offer audience members the perfect shiver down their spines. This quintessential story ballet features the production’s traditional score by Adolphe Adam and the influence of choreographers Jean Coralli, Jules Perrot and Marius Petipa.
Per Maryland Hall regulations, audience members will be required to wear a mask. In-person tickets are $28 to $47, while virtual streaming tickets are $25. To purchase tickets or learn more about “Giselle,” visit www.balletmaryland.org.