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The Corsair


Ballet in two acts on a theme by Kader Belarbi

               inspired by Lord Byron’s poem The Corsair (1814)                                              

Creation by the Ballet du Capitole on 16 May 2013


Music   Adolphe Adam, Anton Arenski, David Coleman,

Edouard Lalo, Massenet, Jean Sibelius

Choreography and staging   Kader Belarbi

Sets   Sylvie Olivé

Sets assistant   Camille Ansquer

Costumes   Olivier Bériot

Lighting   Marion Hewlett



The huge success of Lord Byron’s The Corsair, right from its publication in 1814, fed a taste for the exotic in artists and audiences throughout the 19th century.

Byron’s poem has been an endless source of inspiration for numerous choreographers, but no other French choreographic version has seen the light of day since that of Jules Mazilier in 1856. This choreographic adaptation of Byron’s poem, set to music by Adolphe Adam, was produced for the Ballet de l’Opéra de Paris. At the end of the 19th century, Marius Petipa created his own version for the Imperial Ballet in Saint-Petersburg.

Today, Kader Belarbi has rearranged the narrative of the initial poem, creating a great epic ballet that is both academic and with an oriental twist. The choreography plays on the virtuosity of the ensembles and the solo variations, the spirit of romantic ballet and its intertwining, the adventures of the action and exotic feel of the entertainment.


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