Press Releases

February 4, 2013

San Francisco Ballet presents the Northern California Premiere of The Hamburg Ballet in John Neumeier’s Nijinsky

SAN FRANCISCO, Monday, February 4, 2013—San Francisco Ballet is thrilled to welcome The Hamburg Ballet to the Opera House stage in a performance of Nijinsky, John Neumeier’s dance theater epic based on the tumultuous life of dancer Vaslav Nijinsky. The second program of its 2013 season, Nijinsky runs from Wednesday, February 13 to Tuesday, February 19.

Nijinsky has captivated dance lovers worldwide since its debut in 2000. Hailed as “darkly triumphant” by the Los Angeles Times, Nijinsky features scenery, lighting, and costumes by Neumeier, whose work also includes the San Francisco Ballet sensation, The Little Mermaid, which made its national broadcast debut on PBS Great Performances in 2011.

Performed by The Hamburg Ballet, for whom Neumeier has served as Artistic Director since 1973, Nijinsky tells the story of the iconic dancer-choreographer’s descent into madness, from his magical beginnings with Les Ballets Russes to his final breakdown in St. Moritz, Switzerland during World War I. The ballet is set to a score by Frédéric Chopin, Robert Schumann, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, and Dmitri Shostakovich – including music made famous by some of Nijinsky’s greatest performances, including Michel Fokine’s Carnaval and Sheherazade.

"SF Ballet is thrilled to present the Bay Area premiere of Neumeier’s highly acclaimed and dramatic Nijinsky," said SF Ballet Artistic Director & Principal Choreographer Helgi Tomasson."We are also thrilled to partner with and welcome The Hamburg Ballet to our home here in San Francisco in what we consider an important international artistic exchange."

Single tickets available and tickets available as part of a subscription package. Packages start at less than $50. To purchase tickets please visit or call 415.865.2000.

San Francisco Ballet’s presentation of The Hamburg Ballet in Nijinsky by John Neumeier is made possible by Lead Sponsor The Hellman Family Foundation; Major Sponsors Cecilia and Jim Herbert, and The Bernard Osher Foundation; Sponsor Stephen and Margaret Gill Family Foundation; Mary Jo and Dick Kovacevich, and Marie and Barry Lipman; and Full Length Ballets Sponsor Koret Foundation.

San Francisco Ballet
As America’s oldest professional ballet company, San Francisco Ballet has enjoyed a long and rich tradition of artistic “firsts” since its founding in 1933, including performing the first American productions of Swan Lake and Nutcracker, as well as the first 20th-century American Coppélia. San Francisco Ballet is one of the three largest ballet companies in the United States. Guided in its early years by American dance pioneers and brothers Lew, Willam and Harold Christensen, San Francisco Ballet currently presents more than 100 performances annually, both locally and internationally. Under the direction of Helgi Tomasson for more than two decades, the Company has achieved an international reputation as one of the preeminent ballet companies in the world. In 2005, San Francisco Ballet won the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award in the category of “Outstanding Achievement in Dance” and in 2006, it was the first non-European company elected “Company of the Year” in Dance Europe magazine’s annual readers’ poll. In 2008, the Company marked its 75th anniversary with a host of initiatives including an ambitious New Works Festival. Recent highlights include a tour to the People’s Republic of China, the celebration of Artistic Director & Principal Choreographer Helgi Tomasson’s 25th anniversary with the Company, and the United States premiere of John Neumeier’s The Little Mermaid, which was broadcast internationally, as well as nationally on PBS’s Great Performances “Dance in America” in December 2011. In 2012, SF Ballet’s ambitious tour schedule included engagements in London and Washington, D.C., as well as first time visits to Hamburg, Moscow, and Sun Valley, Idaho.

Performance dates & times
Wed 13, 7:30pm
Thu 14, 8pm
Fri 15, 8pm
Sat 16, 2pm/8pm
Sun 17, 2pm
Tue 19, 8pm

All performances at the War Memorial Opera House at 301 Van Ness Avenue, San Francisco.

Tickets and more information at or 415.865.2000.

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