Kyoto Prize Laureate John Neumeier

Kyoto Prize Laureate John Neumeier returns with The Hamburg Ballet to Japan. First appearance in Japan since the Prize Ceremony on the 10th of November 2015 in Kyoto.

The audience at Tokyo Bunka Kaikan celebrated the return of Kyoto Prize laureate John Neumeier and The Hamburg Ballet to Japan with standing ovations. The performance of his ballet “Liliom” is part of John Neumeier’s first tour to Japan since he had received the prestigious Kyoto Prize on the 10th of November 2015 in Kyoto. Following the “Liliom” performances, two further productions of The Hamburg Ballet are scheduled: “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “The World of John Neumeier”, a gala performance presented by the chief choreographer himself.

John Neumeier expressed his thoughts about this tour to Japan: „It is truly a great pleasure to return once more to Japan with my company, The Hamburg Ballet. I myself as well as all my dancers are excited to present three programs, including a completely new work, a Hamburg classic and a gala whose theme outlines my own career.”

Germany’s ambassador to Japan, Dr. Hans Carl von Werthern, describes John Neumeier as a “bridge builder” between Germany and Japan: “The Hamburg Ballet which undertook its first tour to Japan already in 1986, is an important part of this cultural bridge. To recognize this aspect of his work, the Artistic Director of The Hamburg Ballet, John Neumeier, was presented last year with the Kyoto Prize, one of the most important awards in the field of science and culture.”

All three performances of „Liliom“ at Tokyo Bunka Kaikan are presented with live music played by the NDR Bigband; this distinguished ensemble will also perform in renowned Japanese jazz clubs during its tour to Japan. The leading roles, “Liliom” and “Julie”, will be danced by The Hamburg Ballet’s principal Carsten Jung and guest dancer Alina Cojocaru; for the ballet’s world premiere in 2011, John Neumeier had already entrusted both dancers with the performance of these roles.

One day prior to the first performance of “Liliom”, John Neumeier allowed 400 students to watch a major rehearsal. Their attendance was organized in cooperation with the Inamori Foundation. It is part of the official education program John Neumeier has started after receiving the Kyoto Prize.

Tokyo Bunka Kaikan

“Liliom”, 4th of March 2016, 6.30 pm as well as 5th and 6th of March 2016, 2.00 pm
“The World of John Neumeier”, 8th and 9th of March 2016, 6.30 pm
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, 11th of March 2016, 6.30 pm as well as 12th and 13th of March 2016, 2.00 pm

Kyoto Prize Laureate John Neumeier. Hamburg Ballett © KiranWest