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Hull New Theatre will officially reopen with a special performance presented by The Royal Ballet.

Under the banner Opening the New you can expect an exhilarating evening of classical and contemporary dance, specially curated by The Royal Ballet‘s Hull-born director Kevin O’Hare.

Marking The Royal Ballet’s first performance in Hull for 30 years, the evening will feature performances by some of the finest dancers in the world.

Royal Ballet Principal dancers Francesca Hayward, Sarah Lamb, Marianela Nuñez, Thiago Soares, Steven McRae and Edward Watson will be joined by Xander Parish, who was born in North Ferriby, first learned to dance in Hull and was the first British dancer to be employed by the Mariinsky Ballet in St Petersburg. Xander’s sister Demelza Parish, a First Artist of The Royal Ballet will also feature in the performance, as well Royal Ballet Soloist Elizabeth Harrod, another dancer who trained in Hull. Hull-born Joseph Caley, who was recently announced as joining English National Ballet from Birmingham Royal Ballet where he began his career, rising through the ranks to Principal, will also perform.

The programme will include excerpts from Swan Lake and Romeo and Juliet and works by The Royal Ballet’s associated choreographers, the internationally renowned Wayne McGregor and Christopher Wheeldon.

As well as the performance inside Hull New Theatre, a special screening of the event will be relayed live in to Queens Gardens. There will be a festival atmosphere with bars selling drinks and snacks and a few surprises specially arranged for the screening event.

Earlier in the day there will be two free performances of Take Flight, a newly commissioned dance piece by The Royal Ballet and Hull 2017, which will take place in Trinity Square in front of the recently designated Hull Minster. With around 100 local young dancers taking part and music written by John Webb and choreographed by Rachel Attfield from The Royal Ballet Learning & Participation team, Take Flight will be a celebration of Hull’s role in producing some of the UK’s finest dancers. Take Flight will be a unique collaboration between The Royal Ballet, local young dancers and dance teachers. Details about performance times will be announced shortly.

Based on Swan Lake, the new work by The Royal Ballet’s Learning and Participation team, led by Jillian Barker, will be performed by pupils from four local dance schools, the Northern Academy of Performing Arts (NAPA), the Skelton Hooper School of Dance and Theatre, the Lyn Wilson and Heather Shepherdson School of Dance (LWHS) and the McKeown Irish Dance Academy.

The Royal Ballet’s visit will celebrate Hull’s extraordinary contribution to dance and ballet, while showcasing the city’s next generation of dancers.


Tickets for Opening the New performance at Hull New Theatre will go on sale on Friday 21 July at 10am. They will cost £40 and be available from the Hull New Theatre website.  You can also buy in person by visiting the box office at Hull City Hall or by calling 01482 300 306. There will be a maximum of two tickets per person.


Tickets for the live screening of Opening the New in Queens Gardens will go on sale on Saturday 22 July at 10am and will cost £6. These will be available from the Hull 2017 website. There will be a maximum of four tickets per person.


Kingston Square

If you have purchased a ticket for an event/activity at this venue through hull2017.co.uk, please do not contact the venue direct with enquiries for that purchase as they will be unable to help.

Opening times

Monday Not specified
Tuesday Not specified
Wednesday Not specified
Thursday Not specified
Friday Not specified
Saturday Not specified
Sunday Not specified

Creative Credits

Take Flight and the Queens Gardens Live Screening are supported by Arts Council England.

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