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Swan Lake

at the Samford Wright Center
Friday, March 1, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 3, 2019 at 2:00 p.m.
With mesmerizing beauty this ballet tells the story of the lovely Princess Odette who was magically turned into a swan by a sorcerer and triumphantly rescued by the brave Prince Siegfried. Birmingham Ballet’s Swan Lake, with staging by Cindy Free, captures the essence of this classic favorite with innovative freshness that makes it enjoyable for the entire family.

Tickets range from $25 – $45
All Youth tickets are $25

Group Discounts: Discounts available for groups of 10 or more. Contact:

Swan Lake Program

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The Story of 'Swan Lake'
Tchaikovsky's magical ballet tells the story of Prince Siegfried and Princess Odette.

Act One - Scene 1:
It is Prince Siegfried's 21st birthday. To celebrate the day, he takes a break from his studies and escapes the palace to play in the forest with his best friend Benno, the court Jester, and the village children. His mother, the Queen, finds him there and reminds him that he is now old enough to pick a bride. As a birthday gift, she gives him a crossbow.

Act One - Scene 2:
Later that evening Prince Siegfried goes out hunting with his new crossbow and chases a group of swans – one of them transforms into a young woman, Odette, who explains that she and her companions were turned into swans by the evil Baron Von Rothbart. By day, they swim in a lake of tears as swans and at night they are permitted to take on a more human like form.

The spell can only be broken if someone who has never loved before swears an oath of undying love and promises to marry her. The Prince declares his love to Odette and promises to be loyal forever.

Act Two - Scene 1:
At a grand reception at the palace, the Prince must choose a bride – but he can think only of Odette. Suddenly a fanfare announces the arrival of two guests – it is Odette! The prince dances with her and asks for her hand in marriage.

But it's not Odette – the mystery woman is the daughter of the evil von Rothbart, Odile. Baron Von Rothbart placed Odile under a spell to make her look like Odette. Odette has witnessed the whole scene. Too late, Siegfried realises his mistake.

Act Two - Scene 2:
Siegfried follows Odette to the lake and begs her forgiveness. Then, he battles with von Rothbart and tears off his wing, killing him. Odette is restored to human form and she and Prince Siegfried live happily ever after.

The Music of 'Swan Lake'

The dancers who performed in the ballet's premiere declared Tchaikovsky's music to be simply too difficult to dance to. Music of such richness and depth was not, they thought, the kind that should accompany their balletic moves.

Today, the ballet is adored by young and old: from the graceful Waltz in Act I to the playful Dance of the Cygnets, this is wonderfully innocent music. Tchaikovsky evidently enjoyed composing the music for Swan Lake, writing far more material than would ever be required. Indeed, the version most commonly encountered today is, in fact, an edited one, created after Tchaikovsky’s death and considerably shorter than the original, full-length work. It’s now the world’s most frequently performed ballet.