For immediate release

Canada’s Ballet Jörgen presents the inspiring story ballet in Toronto for two days only

[Toronto, ON – August 25, 2014] Canada`s Ballet Jörgen kicks off its 2014-2015 season with a story ballet for the whole family. The Velveteen Rabbit, choreographed by award-winning dance maker, Kathleen Rea, will be at the Betty Oliphant Theatre in Toronto on October 4 at 4pm and again on October 5 at 2pm.

This dance interpretation of a beloved story is not only entertaining but also underscores the importance of friendship, love and the discovery of what is real. The company dancers bring to life this renowned story of a young boy and his love for a stuffed rabbit that eventually comes alive. The Velveteen Rabbit was the most popular of the thirty children’s books written by Margery Williams and highlights important life values for readers of all ages. As the wise character Skin Horse says, “Real isn’t how you are made. It’s the thing that happens to you. When a child really loves you for a long, long time… then you become real.” Seeing the characters brought to life on the stage, filled with humour and charm, will engage both young and old alike.

The Velveteen Rabbit was choreographer, Kathleen Rea’s favourite children’s story. “As a young child I understood that becoming ‘real’ was a sort of magic that can happen to all of us. I even had my own stuffed velveteen rabbit that I loved into being real.” Years later when Ballet Jörgen artistic director, Bengt Jörgen, invited Kathleen Rea to create a children’s ballet for his company, The Velveteen Rabbit was the first story that came to her mind.

“I asked the costume designer, Andrew Majtenyi to use my old toy as a model for the lead dancer’s costume, and so my childhood toy has actually come to life! As a mother, creating a ballet version of my favorite story is a dream come true. I hope it will delight and inspire my two boys as much as it did me when I was young”, said Rea.

Canada’s Ballet Jörgen presents The Velveteen Rabbit

October 4, 2014 – 4pm
October 5, 2014 – 2pm
Betty Oliphant Theatre, 404 Jarvis St., Toronto, Ontario.
Tickets: $16 to $32

To reserve tickets please visit or call toll free at 1-888-655-9090.

Praise for The Velveteen Rabbit:

“Kathleen Rea’s charming ballet fleshes out the characters in Margery Williams’s children’s classic The Velveteen Rabbit the story of a toy rabbit who comes alive through the power of a little boy’s love.”  –  The Globe and Mail

About Kathleen Rea

Kathleen Rea (Toronto) danced with Canada’s Ballet Jörgen, the National Ballet of Canada & Tiroler Landestheater in Austria. Kathleen teaches dance at George Brown College, Niagara College & York University. She founded the Toronto Wednesday Contact Improvisation Jam. Kathleen has choreographed over 40 dance works for her company REAson d’etre dance productions & other organizations. Her award winning dance film Lapinthrope screened at fourteen international festivals. Her production Long Live was nominated for three Dora awards. In 2010, Kathleen won the K. M. Hunter Award. Her book The Healing Dance, has won praise for its “beauty and authenticity” (The Arts in Psychotherapy).

About Canada’s Ballet Jörgen

Canada’s Ballet Jörgen builds communities across Canada through the shared experience of professional ballet. Reaching every province with over 600 events annually, we ensure communities large and small, urban and rural have access to a ballet experience that is recognized for its innovation, warmth and beauty. Inspiring and connecting with Canadians for over 25 years, Canada’s Ballet Jörgen makes ballet and Canadian choreography a meaningful part of Canadians’ lives through performance, education, and community engagement.

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Photos by Kamal Daid; Dancers Ayva Roussow-Holland and Adrian Juarez.

Watch a Behind the Scenes video and Interview with choreographer Kathleen Rea on YouTube:


For more information, photos, media passes, and/or to request an interview, contact:
Anne Zozo, Marketing Services Coordinator (416) 961-4725

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