Press Releases

February 27, 2013

Back by Popular Demand! San Francisco Ballet presents Onegin by John Cranko

SAN FRANCISCO, Wednesday, February 27, 2013—After receiving rave reviews in 2012, San Francisco Ballet is pleased to reprise John Cranko’s dramatic story ballet, Onegin, March 21 to 28, 2013.  The San Francisco Chronicle called it “remarkably imaginative...Cranko’s masterpiece still has the power to transport and astonish.” San Jose Mercury News said, “The audience leapt to its feet in a roar of approval. Onegin was a home run.”

Based on Alexander Pushkin’s classic novel, Onegin tells a timeless story of love and friendship, honor and betrayal. The full-length work is set to a score by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky orchestrated by Kurt-Heinze Stolze, with scenery and costumes by award-winning designer Santo Loquasto. First performed by Stuttgart Ballet in 1965, Onegin is considered one of Cranko’s masterpieces and has been performed by more than 20 companies around the world. It remains one of this three most widely performed full-length works.

Artistic Director and Principal Choreographer Helgi Tomasson recognized the challenge of bringing Onegin into the San Francisco Ballet’s repertory – a project requiring the involvement of longtime Cranko ballet stager Jane Bourne, five ballet masters, more than three-quarters of the Company’s dancers, as well as apprentices and students.  The end result, however, has more than paid off in a production Tomasson calls “gorgeous.”

"We are so pleased to be bringing back this wonderful dramatic story ballet," said Tomasson. "It was a hit with audiences and critics, and our Company members were both challenged and inspired by performing this piece last year."

Loquasto’s scenic and costume designs were commissioned by National Ballet of Canada in 2010 when the original sets and costumes by Jürgen Rose had become too fragile to use. Sumptuous interiors alternate with outdoor scenes populated with silver birches, in an elegant evocation of Russia.

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
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:
Thu 21, 8pm
Fri 22, 8pm
Sat 23, 2pm/8pm
Sun 24, 2pm
Tue 26, 8pm
Wed 27, 7:30pm
Thu 28, 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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