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The Australian Ballet presents Anna Karenina
Anna Karenina

Anna Karenina

Melbourne, VIC
The agonies and ecstasies of Anna’s turbulent life are masterfully evoked in this passionate ballet with cinematic staging, elegant costumes and Yuri Possokhov’s powerful choreography

About Anna Karenina

"There are as many kinds of love as there are hearts...." Leo Tolstoy

Cinematic staging, elegant costumes and Yuri Possokhov’s powerful choreography illuminate the tragedy of Anna Karenina, whose desire brings about her ruin.

When Anna meets Vronsky, a handsome young officer, the instant connection between them flames into an affair – with disastrous consequences. Anna leaves her conservative husband and relinquishes her son to be with her lover, but her bliss is fleeting, and when Vronsky’s passion cools she takes desperate action.

Possokhov, formerly a principal dancer with Bolshoi Ballet and San Francisco Ballet and now a major international choreographer, does full justice to Tolstoy’s novel, distilling its central romances and conflicts into a fast-moving, immersive narrative.

The celebrated theatre designer Tom Pye captures the opulence of Anna’s world with a modern twist, through vividly coloured costumes and a sparse, contemporary set that conjures ballrooms, boudoirs and the fateful railway station. Finn Ross’ projections (including real-time footage of the dancers) add substance and atmosphere.

A specially commissioned orchestral score by award-winning composer Ilya Demutsky, who has worked with Possokhov on five previous occasions, captures the torment and raptures of its characters and includes a mezzo-soprano singing live on stage.

After standing ovations and critical acclaim in its debut season, Anna Karenina is set to sweep you away.

Anna Karenina is a co-production of Joffrey Ballet and The Australian Ballet.

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"A masterful homage to an epic novel" - Chicago Sun Times

"This is not just one for the balletomanes – anyone who loves dance, film or musical theatre will find something to appreciate in this exciting production." - ArtsHub

Choreography: Yuri Possokhov

Composer: Ilya Demutsky Libretto Valeriy Pecheykin based on the novel by Leo Tolstoy

Costume and set design: Tom Pye

Lighting design: David Finn

Projection design: Finn Ross

With Orchestra Victoria and Opera Australia Orchestra

Anna Karenina is a co-production of The Joffrey Ballet and The Australian Ballet.

Run time

2hrs (inc interval)

Start date

February 25th, 2022

End date

March 9th, 2022


Ballet, Dance


Arts Centre Melbourne, State Theatre

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