Breathing life into a monster

Preparations are already underway to bring you an astounding season next year, which includes the terrifying story of Frankenstein as told by Artistic Director Jean Grand-Maître just in time for Halloween.

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This summer, the creative team will retreat to the Banff Centre in the mountains where they plan to start collaborating on the fall’s blockbuster production that Jean promises will be terrifyingly glorious.

“We are so fortunate to have this partnership with the Banff Centre,” he said. “It’s a fabulous mythical sanctuary – an extraordinary place for artists to disappear into their visions.”

The artistic team, made up of 12 dancers, the choreographers and designers, will spend three weeks at the Centre collaborating on what Frankenstein will be. Jean has a vision, but breathing life into a monster as complex as Dr. Frankenstein’s creature is no simple task.

“The music will inspire the choreography,” Jean said, adding he envisions the monster’s movements to be more contemporary, but the production will feature classical ballet as well.

Considered the first science-fiction novel ever written, Mary Shelley’s disturbing tale of man’s usurpation of science and woman’s procreative power may have birthed the first genuine myth since the ancient Greeks. Jean and his illustrious team of designers will transpose Shelley’s terrifying “fairy tale for adults” to North America in 2019. For Jean, Shelley’s prophetic narrative seems even more achievable in our modern world than it would have been two centuries ago.

“The designers and I believe that by transposing this terrifying story to our present time we will have a more indelible effect on our patrons. It will somehow connect stronger because of how the audience is going to relate to the technology, the advance of artificial intelligence, stem cell research and cloning,” Jean said.  “It also reinforces the brilliance of this masterpiece. She was quite ahead of her time. In every way this book captured something that was of its time but was also eternal.”

Watch for updates on Frankenstein throughout the summer, including an exclusive pre-sale of single tickets starting in May.

Kim Jackson