The windswept majesty of the Yorkshire moors comes to Sheffield next week when Northern Ballet return to the Lyceum Theatre with their dramatic adaptation of Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights.
From one of the greatest love stories in the world the ballet focuses on the powerful bond that grows between Catherine Earnshaw and the foundling Heathcliff whose lives are inexorably linked for eternity amid the bleak and beautiful moorlands that surround them.
This production choreographed by Northern Ballet’s artistic director, David Nixon, is set to an original score by celebrated composer Claude-Michel Schönberg, known for his West End and Broadway hits Les Misérables and Miss Saigon.
Wuthering Heights, first performed in 2002, was Nixon’s first creation for Northern Ballet and his first collaboration with composer Schönberg. It was also his first collaboration with Patricia Doyle who has since worked with Northern Ballet as dramaturg, scenario creator and co-director on several productions including Cinderella, The Great Gatsby and Cleopatra.
“Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights is not a novel that you read and put back on the shelf,” opines the artistic director. “It is a story that absorbs you, creating powerful imagery that stays with you long after you turn the last page.
“My adaptation focuses on the intensity and devastation of the relationship between Cathy and Heathcliff.’
Since the mixed reaction when it was premiered in 2002, he believes Wuthering Heights has benefited from developments at Northern Ballet which have included a bigger depth in the cast enabling the character of Heathcliff to be given greater prominence.
In 2010 a new piece of music and a new scene for Heathcliff were added.
Wuthering Heights visits the Lyceum Theatre from Wednesday to Saturday.