Beauty & the Beast

Davis Theatre for the Performing Arts
March 5 - 6, 2022

Once upon a time in the depths of the French countryside lived a Prince who ruled over his land with an iron fist. He was cruel, without empathy for the plight of those that suffered in poverty while he lived in splendor

One day he was approached by an old beggar woman, and repeatedly ignored her pleas for help. His arrogance turned to horror as she transformed before him into a beautiful enchantress. He begged for her forgiveness, but it was far too late. Intent on teaching him a lesson, the Enchantress transformed him into a hideous beast and bound the curse with an enchanted rose. To break the spell, he must find true love before the last petal falls.

 

Should he fail, then the curse will seal his fate, and he will be doomed to live as a beast forever.

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It’s a “tale as old as time,” a story of love and failed first impressions.
 
There’s a Beauty. There’s a cursed Beast. There’s a cast of other magical characters, including a dancing enchanted rose. 

- Shannon Heupel, Montgomery Advertiser

Meet the main characters

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Thoughts from the choreographer

It’s a story we all know and cherish. It was a part of our childhood. It stayed with us as we grew up. Who doesn’t remember that song by the lovable Mrs. Potts, a.k.a the incomparable Angela Lansbury?

Tale as old as time

Song as old as rhyme

Beauty and the beast…

I have done a multitude of full-length storybook ballets over the years. Peter Pan, for example, was a high-flying adventure full of pirates, mermaids, and a headstrong little boy who laughed in the face of all who dared to tell him to grow up. Cinderella, on the other hand, was a ballet for the dreamer in all of us a true rags to riches story, and the indomitable truth that through kindness all things are possible. The list goes on and on, but there is a common thread. Each story has a lesson. A deeper message that can truly leave a lasting impression on the audience.

My telling of Beauty and the Beast is a departure from the mainstream and returns to the original fairy tale in French which is called La Belle et la Bête. It was written by French novelist Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve in  1740. It was then later revised by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont in 1756. However, the influence for the story reaches back to the 2nd century AD with the tale of Cupid and Psyche, from Metamorphoses, written by Platonicus.

Beauty and the Beast is a story ultimately about the power of kindness and the ability to look past what lies on the surface.

- Sara Sanford

"Genuine kindness is no ordinary act, but a gift of rare beauty."

- Sylvia Rossetti

photography © Richard & Holley Calmes