One of the most beloved romantic ballets presented in an acclaimed production.

Since its Paris premiere in 1841, Giselle has been an instant triumph with audiences. A love story, a ghost story, and a tale of forgiveness from beyond the grave, Giselle is about a peasant girl who falls in love with a nobleman, not knowing he is betrothed to another woman. When she finds out the truth, she goes mad and dies, only to become one of the Wilis, ghostly women who have been betrayed and must spend eternity haunting men. See why Giselle remains one of the most enduring masterpieces in ballet with this ethereal production reconceived by Artistic Director Adam Sklute.

Choreography: Conceived and produced by Adam Sklute, after Jean Coralli and Julles Perrot
Composer: Adolphe Adam
Staging and Additional Choreography: Pamela Robinson Harris
Additional Staging: Jane Victorine Wood
Guest Coach: Karin Averty
Sets: Peter Cazalet
Costume Design: David Heuvel
Lighting: Joseph R. Walls

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Giselle is produced through the generosity and ongoing support of the Marriner S. Eccles Foundation and Jones Waldo. 

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ARTICLES AND INSIGHT

Synopsis

Act I – Harvest time in a village in the German Rhineland.

Giselle, a young peasant girl, is being courted by a young man known to her as Loys. He is in fact Albrecht, Duke of Silesia, disguised as a peasant. Loys vows his eternal love for Giselle, but they are interrupted by Hilarion, a woodsman who has been in love with Giselle since they were children. Giselle kindly tells Hilarion of her feelings for Loys. Hilarion is hurt, but he is also suspicious of Loys, suspecting that he is not who he claims to be. Hilarion vows to uncover the identity of this mystery man and regain Giselle’s love.

The villagers return from the harvest and all join in a dance. Berthe, Giselle’s mother, admonishes the girl for dancing so much. Berthe is afraid for her daughter’s fragile health and wants no ill to befall her. At that moment, Berthe has a startling premonition. It is of the legend of the Wilis, young women who have been betrayed and died before their wedding day, and who must now spend eternity on earth haunting men. This, Berthe fears, will be Giselle’s fate. Berthe leads a reluctant Giselle indoors, and Loys takes his leave.

Horns sound in the distance, signaling the imminent arrival of a hunting party. Hilarion returns, and breaks into Loys’ hut as the horns sound again. The hunting party arrives, led by the Duke of Courland and his daughter Bathilde, who are seeking sustenance.

As Giselle sees to her guests, Bathilde engages her in conversation. The noblewoman asks if Giselle has a beau, and Giselle explains that she is engaged. Bathilde responds that she too is engaged, and inquires after Giselle’s fiancé. Giselle looks for him, but cannot find him. Bathilde is charmed by Giselle and requests the Duke’s permission to present the girl with her necklace.

The Duke and Bathilde take their leave, and the hunting party disperses. Hilarion emerges from Loys’ hut with his rival’s sword, which is branded with an elaborate crest signifying nobility. He catches sight of the departing noble hunting party and connects it with the sword. He feels vindicated and triumphant. However, before he can expose Loys’ deception to Giselle, the villagers return. Hilarion hides the sword and leads them in a dance.

Giselle’s friends crown her Queen of the Village. Everyone dances in celebration of the harvest, including Giselle and Loys, but their revelry is interrupted by Hilarion, who rushes toward Giselle and denounces Loys as a deceiver. He presents the sword as proof. Giselle does not want to believe him. Hilarion summons the hunting party with a horn, and Loys can no longer conceal his identity. Not only is he a nobleman, but he is engaged to Bathilde! Giselle becomes distraught beyond measure. She realizes that she has been deceived and, in her shock, goes mad. Having abandoned all hope of happiness, Giselle takes her own life, thus bringing to fruition her mother’s premonition.

Act II – In the forest at Giselle’s grave.

Giselle has been buried in the forest. Hilarion visits her grave to grieve, but senses the presence of the Wilis and runs away to hide.

Myrthe, Queen of the Wilis, summons her subjects to appear for the initiation of Giselle into their sisterhood. Myrthe wields branches of myrtle, a symbol of death, to begin their ritual. The Wilis hide throughout the forest as Albrecht, full of remorse, also comes to mourn at Giselle’s grave, seeking her forgiveness. The ghost of Giselle appears before Albrecht and comforts him, but she cannot forgive him and rejects his offering of lilies. She disappears, like the wind, into the woods. Albrecht pursues her.

Meanwhile, Hilarion has been found by the Wilis. On Myrthe’s orders, they surround him and drive him to dance until he dies. Hilarion begs for their forgiveness but, as they are vengeful spirits, they show him no mercy.

Now Albrecht’s presence is discovered by the Wilis and Myrthe commands that he too must die. Giselle intervenes to protect him from the angry ghosts. However, she is too new a spirit to overcome Myrthe’s power. Together, Giselle and Albrecht must both dance until he dies.

A weary Albrecht pleads to stop dancing. His entreaty is refused. Giselle again appeals for his life, but she cannot sway Myrthe. Albrecht continues to dance until he collapses from exhaustion and at that moment, Giselle comes forward and forgives him for all his transgressions. The purity of her heart frees Albrecht from the spell, and the Wilis are banished by the first light of dawn. Giselle returns to her grave, her soul now lightened by the generosity of her act. Albrecht is left to weep and ponder his actions.

La Historia

Acto I – Es tiempo de cosecha en una aldea Renania alemana.

Giselle, una joven campesina, es cortejada por un joven quien ella conoce como Loys. Pero en realidad el joven es Albrecht, Duque de Silesia, disfrazado como campesino. Loys le jura amor eterno a Giselle, pero Hilarion los interrumpe, un hombre del bosque que ha estado enamorado de Giselle desde que eran niños. Giselle amablemente le dice lo que ella siente por Loys. Hilarion se siente herido, y cree que hay algo sospechoso en Loys, algo le dice que quizá Loys no es quien el dice ser. Hilarion promete descubrir la verdadera identidad de este hombre misterioso para recuperar el amor de Giselle.

La gente de la aldea regresa de la cosecha y celebra danzando. Berthe, la madre de Giselle, regaña a la joven por bailar tanto. Berthe está preocupada por la salud frágil de su hija y no quiere que le suceda algo. En ese momento Berthe tiene una premonición alarmante sobre la leyenda de las Wilis, jóvenes que han sido traicionadas y murieron antes del día de su boda, y que deben pasar la eternidad atormentando a hombres sobre la tierra. A Berthe le preocupa que este sea el destino de Giselle. Berthe se lleva a Giselle adentro de su hogar y Loys departe.

A la distancia se escuchan cuernos, indicando la inminente llegada de un grupo de cacería. Hilarion regresa y se mete a la choza de Loys. El grupo de cacería llega al mando del Duque de Courland y su hija Bathilde, quienes buscan alimento.

Mientras Giselle atiende a sus invitados, Bathilde platica con ella. La joven aristócrata le pregunta a Giselle si tiene galán, y Giselle le dice que está comprometida. Bathilde le dice que también ella está comprometida, y le pregunta más detalles sobre su prometido. Giselle lo busca entre la gente pero no logra encontrarlo. Giselle gana la simpatía de Bathilde, quien le pide permiso a su padre el Duque de regalarle un collar.

El Duque, Bathilde y el grupo de cacería se retiran. Hilarion sale de la choza con la espada de su rival, la cual lleva una elaborada cresta que indica pertenece a la nobleza. Hilarion alcanza a ver el grupo de cacería aristócrata a lo lejos y se da cuenta del significado de la espada. Se siente vindicado y triunfante. Pero antes de demostrarle la mentira de Loys a Giselle, la gente de la aldea regresa. Hilarion esconde la espada e invita a todos a danzar.

Los amigos de Giselle la coronan Reina de la Aldea. Todos danzan, celebrando la cosecha, incluyendo Giselle y Loys, pero Hilarion interrumpe el festejo. Hilarion corre hacia Giselle y le dice sobre la mentira de Loys, presentándole la espada como prueba. Giselle no quiere creerle. Hilarion llama al grupo de cacería con un cuerno, y Loys ya no puede esconder su verdadera identidad. No solamente es parte de la nobleza, ¡Está comprometido con Bathilde! Giselle se abruma y se da cuenta de que la han engañado y enloquece. Giselle se suicida, pues siente ha perdido toda esperanza de ser feliz, y así se cumple la premonición de su madre.

 

Acto II – En el bosque por la tumba de Giselle

Han sepultado a Giselle en el bosque. Hilarion la visita afligido, pero siente la presencia de las Wilis y corre a esconderse.

Myrthe, la Reina de las Wilis, invoca a sus súbditas para admitir a Giselle en la hermandad. Myrthe lleva consigo ramas de mirto, símbolo de muerte, para comenzar el ritual. Las Wilis se esconden a través del bosque mientras que Albrecht, lleno de remordimiento, también viene a llorar a la tumba de Giselle, buscando su perdón. El fantasma de Giselle se le aparece a Albrecht y lo consuela, pero no puede perdonarlo y rechaza su ofrenda de lirios. Giselle desaparece, como el viento, entre el bosque. Albrecht la persigue.

Mientras tanto, las Wilis han encontrado a Hilarion. Bajo las órdenes de Myrthe, lo rodean y lo forzan a bailar hasta morir. Hilarion pide misericordia, pero como espíritus vengativos, no le muestran ninguna.

Las Wilis y Myrthe luego descubren la presencia de Albrecht, y Myrthe ordena que también él debe morir. Giselle interviene para protegerlo de la ira de los fantasmas. Pero Giselle, siendo una nueva fantasma, no puede contra el poder de Myrthe. Juntos, Giselle y Albrecht deben danzar hasta que él muera.

Albrecht, agotado, ruega que termine la danza. Su súplica es ignorada. Giselle nuevamente pide por la vida de Albrecht, pero no logra convencer a Myrthe. Albrecht continua danzando hasta que cae de agotamiento y en ese momento Giselle le perdona. La pureza de su corazón libera a Albrecht del hechizo, y las Wilis desaparecen con la primera luz del amanecer. Giselle regresa a su tumba, su alma ahora ligera por la generosidad de su propio acto. Albrecht se queda llorando, pensando en sus acciones.

 

AT THE JANET QUINNEY LAWSON CAPITOL THEATRE

PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE
February 7 Evening 7:30pm
February 8 Matinee 2pm
February 8 Evening 7:30pm
February 12 Evening 7:30pm
February 13 Evening 7:30pm
February 14 Evening 7:30pm
February 15 Matinee 2pm
February 15 Evening 7:30pm

 

 


CASTING – SUBJECT TO CHANGE

FOR THE MOST ACCURATE LIST OF PERFORMERS, BE SURE TO CHECK THE CASTING BOARD IN THE LOBBY.


 

SALT LAKE CITY

2/7 AND 2/15 EVE

Giselle: Beckanne Sisk
Prince Albrecht: Chase O’Connell
Myrthe: Allison DeBona
Hilarion: Hadriel Diniz
Berthe: Heather Thackeray
Bathilde: Katlyn Addison
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Jenna Rae Herrera, Chelsea Keefer,
Alexander MacFarlan, Jordan Veit
Wilfred: Tyler Gum
Moyne: Gabrielle Salvatto
Zulme: Emily Neale

 

2/8 EVE, 2/12, 2/14

Giselle: Sayaka Ohtaki
Prince Albrecht: Rex Tilton
Myrthe: Katlyn Addison (2/12 Allison DeBona)
Hilarion: Alexander MacFarlan
Berthe: Heather Thackeray
Bathilde: Marge Hendrick* (2/12 Katlyn Addison)
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Hadriel Diniz, Tyler Gum,
Emily Neale, Gabrielle Salvatto
Wilfred: Jordan Veit
Moyne: Jenna Rae Herrera
Zulme: Katie Critchlow

 

2/8 MAT, 2/13, 2/15 MAT

Giselle: Katherine Lawrence
Prince Albrecht: Adrian Fry
Myrthe: Marge Hendrick* (2/13, 2/15 MAT Allison DeBona)
Hilarion: Tyler Gum
Berthe: Heather Fryxell
Bathilde: Allison DeBona (2/13, 2/15 MAT Marge Hendrick)
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Lindsay Bond, Katie Critchlow,
David Huffmire, Joshua Whitehead
Wilfred: Dominic Ballard
Moyne: Chelsea Keefer
Zulme: Kazlyn Nielsen


 

UTAH VALLEY UNIVERSITY

1/31 AND 2/1 EVE

Giselle: Beckanne Sisk
Prince Albrecht: Chase O’Connell
Myrthe: Allison DeBona
Hilarion: Hadriel Diniz
Berthe: Jane Wood
Bathilde: Katlyn Addison
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Jenna Rae Herrera, Chelsea Keefer,
Alexander MacFarlan, Jordan Veit
Wilfred: Tyler Gum
Moyne: Gabrielle Salvatto
Zulme: Emily Neale

 

2/1 MAT

Giselle: Sayaka Ohtaki
Prince Albrecht: Rex Tilton
Myrthe: Katlyn Addison (2/12 Allison DeBona)
Hilarion: Alexander MacFarlan
Berthe: Heather Thackeray
Bathilde: Marge Hendrick* (2/12 Katlyn Addison)
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Hadriel Diniz, Tyler Gum,
Emily Neale, Gabrielle Salvatto
Wilfred: Jordan Veit
Moyne: Jenna Rae Herrera
Zulme: Katie Critchlow

 

CALIFORNIA STATE UNIVERSITY

2/4

Giselle: Beckanne Sisk
Prince Albrecht: Chase O’Connell
Myrthe: Katlyn Addison
Hilarion: Hadriel Diniz
Berthe: Jane Wood
Bathilde: Marge Hendrick*
Duke of Courland: Trevor Naumann
Peasant Pas de Quatre: Jenna Rae Herrera, Chelsea Keefer,
Alexander MacFarlan, Jordan Veit
Wilfred: Tyler Gum
Moyne: Gabrielle Salvatto
Zulme: Emily Neale

*Guest Artist appears courtesy of Scottish Ballet.