There’s a buzz of excitement around West Australian Ballet’s upcoming production Dracula. It seems like artistic director Aurélien Scannella was bang on the money when he approached choreographer Krzysztof Pastor about creating the work on WAB.
Pastor, who held the prestigious position of resident choreographer at the Dutch National Ballet from 2003 to 2017 and is currently the artistic director of both the Polish National Ballet and Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre, was immediately on board. “When Aurélien asked me if I wanted to create a new Dracula on West Australian Ballet I instantly said yes,” he recalls. “I had always wanted to make a version of Dracula and when he mentioned Phil [R Daniels] and Charles [Cusick Smith] would be involved I couldn’t say no.”
Costume and set design team Charles Cusick Smith and Phil R Daniels, who designed the costumes and sets for WAB’s 2016 Nutcracker, have returned to work on Dracula, alongside lighting designer Jon Buswell.
Unlike most new production builds, the sets and costumes for Dracula have been made in Perth in a collaboration with Black Swan State Theatre Company’s production department.
“It was important to us that the new build was done using local industry,” explains WAB Executive Director Jessica Machin. This has allowed a once in a lifetime opportunity for a knowledge exchange between two highly awarded international designers and Western Australian design and production teams.”
The score for the ballet is composed by Wojciech Kilar. who also composed the score for the film, Bram Stoker’s Dracula), and has only been adapted slightly to fit with the choreography by WAB Music Coordinator Michael Brett.