About the Performance
The Velveteen Rabbit was a favourite children’s story for choreographer, Kathleen Rea. She has created a fairy tale work that she hopes will teach children that “it’s what’s on the inside of you that’s most important.”
Description: A children’s ballet that has a strong appeal to young and old. The ballet follows the story of a young boy and his love for a stuffed rabbit, which magically comes to life. The ballet is based on the popular story of the same name by author Margery Williams. The central theme is the importance of friendship, love and the discovery of what is real.
History: The Velveteen Rabbit ballet was choreographed by Kathleen Rea for Canada’s Ballet Jörgen in 2001. It was made for the Prologue for the Performing Arts series which tours the school system in Canada. The original expectation was that it would tour the school gyms for a few years and then be put to rest. Contrary to this plan Velveteen Rabbit so captured audiences attention that it instead become a favourite ballet on Canada’s Ballet Jörgen’s roster and toured throughout North America as main stage production. It was performed so many times that after five years the set had to be destroyed because it was falling apart. In 2014 Canada’s Ballet Jörgen remounted the production and now continues to tour the ballet on the main stage as well as perform it in schools through the Prologue for the Performing Arts Program.
Original Score: Ivan Barbotin’s original score for the Velveteen Rabbit ballet was recorded by a symphony orchestra.
“It was a fabulous show! We really enjoyed it. Great interaction with the audience and the kids loved getting on stage with you guys.”
– Audience Member
“The Velveteen Rabbit is a hit with young audiences….a sold-out crowd of more than 200 sat at the edge of their seats throughout the one-hour show. The six dancers brought to life the cherished children’s story of a young boy and his stuffed rabbit, which magically comes to life. The central theme is the importance of friendship, love and the discovery of what is real. The ballet was staged with children in mind…. The setting was mostly in the boy’s bedroom, where his toys danced and played. A large stuffed rabbit, used as the main prop, later changed into a costumed dancer as the boy loved it more. The friendship grew until the rabbit became “real” and left with fellow wild rabbits. The scenes were magical and full of music recorded by the Canadian Chamber Ensemble. All were pleased with the afternoon’s performance.”
– Orléans Online
“I was taken to a world of magic and innocence through your artistry. So wonderful!”
– Audience Member