One of the few ballets based on the legendary tale, King Arthur’s Camelot transports us to the mystical land of Camelot where the story of King Arthur, Lancelot, and Guinevere unfolds in a visually stunning display of dance, drama, and magic! Exquisite costumes by Sandra Woodall, one of the dance world’s most sought after designers, and an original score by John Estacio set the scene as King Arthur navigates the trials of love and betrayal amidst a kingdom at war. Complete with puppets, projections and jousting, this ballet is fit for royalty so bring your whole castle and court!
|Music||John Estacio performed with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra|
|Set Design||Joe Tilford|
|Costume Design||Sandra Woodall|
|Light Design||Trad A Burns|
|Music Director||Carmon DeLeone|
|Projection Design||John Boesche|
|Puppet Design and Creation||Eric Van Wyk|
|Fight Director||Regina Cerimele-Mechley|
|Associate Lighting Design||Benjamin Gantose|
Join us in Corbett Tower at Music Hall to learn more about the making of King Arthur’s Camelot.
Admission to Meet the Artists is included in your ticket to the current production.
Friday, November 5 – 7:00 PM
Saturday, November 6 – 7:00 PM
Purchase with confidence! We recognize it may be difficult to make long-term plans, we want you to feel confident making your ticket purchase. For every ticket purchase this season, you are guaranteed flexibility to:
The health and safety of our patrons, artists and staff remain Cincinnati Ballet’s top priority. All ticket holders ages 12 and above are required to show proof of full Covid-19 vaccination for entry into Cincinnati Music Hall and the Aronoff Center for the Arts. Proof of a negative Covid-19 test will also be accepted in lieu of proof of vaccination. The negative test can either be a PCR test taken with in 72 hours of the performance or an antigen test by a healthcare or pharmacy provider within 24 hours.
In addition, all guests regardless of age or vaccination status are required to always wear masks inside the venue, including while seated in performance spaces. This policy will remain in effect until further notice. Cincinnati Ballet, along with our venue partners, will continue to closely monitor the rate of Covid-19 transmission in Hamilton County and assess and adjust accordingly. Additional Covid 19-related health protocols and requirements may be in effect at the time of future events. Cincinnati Ballet will communicate any changes via email prior to all affected performance.
Please review our must up to date health and safety information and protocols: https://cballet.org/know-before-you-go/.
This epic story begins in a land torn apart by the chaos of war. The only survivor is a boy named Arthur. The passionate powers of chaos embodied by the swirling Ladies of the Lake try to destroy Arthur, but the Sorcerer Merlin emerges from the stone to adopt him. Merlin teaches Arthur to lead men with honor and in the spirit of brotherhood, and when the fighting begins to re-ignite, young Arthur pulls the sword Excalibur from the stone and is proclaimed king.
Once Arthur is crowned king, Merlin helps him to win the affection of the young princess Guinevere. Their youthful infatuation blooms and they are married in a joyous celebration uniting all the people of the land. Even the arrival of the pompous knight Lancelot, who has come to prove he is the greatest knight in the kingdom, cannot undo the joy of the event. King Arthur and the knights perform the Dance of Honor and inaugurate the legendary peace of Camelot.
The Ladies of the Lake know that deep in the souls of men lurk passions that are not so easily tamed by marriage and honor. They create an ambitious and devious mortal named Mordred to infiltrate the kingdom and help them undo the peace and honor that King Arthur has brought to the land.
During the picnic to celebrate the peace, Guinevere becomes frustrated that King Arthur spends the afternoon deep in conversation with his newest knight Lancelot. To attract some attention and to punish Arthur, she proposes a tournament of jousting. Lancelot and Gawain are the first combatants. What is meant to be all in good fun turns deadly. Tragedy is averted by Merlin but not before the Ladies of the Lake, with the help of Mordred, instill a desperate seed of passion in the hearts of Guinevere and Lancelot. Before Merlin can intervene, he is captured by the Ladies of the Lake leaving King Arthur alone to deal with Mordred and his dark plans.
Alone with his thoughts, King Arthur is haunted by a nightmare in which the Ladies of the Lake torment him with his worst fears. He awakes from it troubled by the presence of Mordred in the kingdom.
With faith in the bond of brotherhood, Arthur plans to knight Mordred and prepares to initiate him in the Dance of Honor. Mordred has no interest in honor and mocks the solemnity of the ceremony angering everyone, especially King Arthur who rips the crest of Camelot from his chest.
Lingering near the throne, Mordred hears people approaching and hides to spy. Drawn by their newly kindled passion, Lancelot and Guinevere find each other in the hallway and dance without touching. Arthur enters not realizing what is happening and joins the dance. Lancelot is unable to participate and leaves as Guinevere takes her leave in the opposite direction. Mordred seizes the opportunity to plant a seed of doubt in King Arthur’s ear about Lancelot and Guinevere. Angry, Arthur sends Mordred away. The doubt haunts him and he dances a tortured solo longing for the guidance of his mentor Merlin.
In the forest, the knights are hunting game and Lancelot has not shown up. Mordred joins them to spread the rumor of Lancelot and Guinevere. Someone is heard approaching and all hide to spy.
Guinevere enters — she and Lancelot plan to meet in the forest one last time before Lancelot leaves forever so that their love will not be discovered. They try to remain chaste with one another but their passion overwhelms them. Infuriated by the betrayal, Gawain and the knights confront Lancelot. Arthur has been watching at a distance and blinded by passion, he attempts to slay Lancelot but Guinevere comes between them. The scene descends into confusion and Lancelot escapes. Guinevere is seized and Mordred insists that Arthur condemn her to death.
In despair, Arthur finds Merlin, but the Ladies of the Lake have rendered him powerless with blindness. A pyre is erected and Guinevere is bound to it. As it begins to burn Arthur finds it unbearable and braves the flames freeing Guinevere. Lancelot charges in. Mordred, driven by the curse of chaos, is determined to destroy Arthur and everything he loves. The kingdom descends into confusion and war as Arthur and Mordred fight. Mordred delivers a mortal blow to Arthur just as Lancelot, coming to Arthur’s aid, is also slain by Mordred. Barely alive, Arthur then kills Mordred.
A young boy wanders among the carnage. He picks up Excalibur and wields it playfully. Arthur, with his last bit of strength, grabs it from the boy and hurls it into the stars. He wants the child to find a way without the sword. He teaches the boy the Dance of Honor and then sends him into the world to tell their story. at.