Company of “The Red Shoes."

Experience the Dark Fairytale; “The Red Shoes” on GREAT PERFORMANCES, Sept 17 at 9 pm

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Great Performances Presents Matthew Bourne’s Two-Time Olivier Award-Winning Production of The Red Shoes September 17 on PBS

Features Tony-nominated actor and dancer Adam Cooper


Red Shoe opera scene
Boris Lermontov (Adam Cooper) and Victoria Page (Ashley Shaw)
Photo Credit: Johan Persson

From Tony Award-winning choreographer and director Matthew Bourne and British dance company New Adventures, Great Performances: The Red Shoes is a stage adaptation of the classic 1948 feature film by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger. Recorded at London’s Sadler’s Wells Theatre in January 2020, the ballet  recounts Hans Christian Andersen’s original tale of obsession, possession and one girl’s dream to be the greatest dancer in the world.

Victoria Page (Ashley Shaw) lives to dance, but her ambitions create a battleground between the two men who inspire her passion: composer Julian Craster (Dominic North) and impresario Boris Lermontov (Adam Cooper).

The production also features Michela Meazza as Irina Boronskaya, Liam Mower as Ivan Boleslawsky and Glenn Graham as Grischa Ljubov. Set to the music of golden-age Hollywood composer Bernard Herrmann, Great Performances: The Red Shoes is orchestrated by Terry Davies and performed by the New Adventures Orchestra with set and costumes by Tony-winning designer Lez Brotherson and lighting by Tony winner Paule Constable. Great Performances: The Red Shoes premieres nationwide Friday, September 17 at 9 p.m. on PBS, and the PBS Video app.


Red Shoes male dancer leaping while leaning on piano
Julian Craster (Dominic North)
Photo Credit: Johan Persson

 Noteworthy Facts:

  • Great Performances: The Red Shoes is the third collaboration between Adam Cooper and Matthew Bourne. Cooper returns to the company in his role as Lermontov after more than 20 years, having first worked with Bourne in 1995 to create the role of The Swan in “Swan Lake.”
  • The Red Shoes earned two Olivier Awards for Best Theatre Choreographer and Best Entertainment and Family
  • For her role as Victoria Page, Ashley Shaw earned The Hospital Club’s h.100 award for Theatre and Performance 2017 in the U.K.
  • As a principal dancer with New Adventures since 2010, Ashley Shaw most recently performed in the title role of Matthew Bourne’s “Cinderella” in the U.K., China, Japan and America.
  • This is the third Matthew Bourne production presented on Great Performances following Swan Lake in 1998 and Sleeping Beauty in 2014.