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Theatre and Performance Guidebooks - Dance and Movement

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An English Ballet
$20.86 ex GST
$22.95 inc GST

An English Ballet

Ninette de Valois

David Gayle (Ed)

Ninette de Valois was an extraordinary woman. Not only did she create The Royal Ballet, The Royal Ballet School and the company that has become Birmingham Royal Ballet – in themselves great achievements – but she was a gifted choreographer, dancer, teacher, administrator, speaker and writer. She also identified and developed so many of the talented dancers, choreographers and teachers who went onto make Britain a world leader in ballet and dance.

During the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of The Royal Ballet in 1981, Ninette de Valois accepted an invitation to speak to the Yorkshire Ballet Seminars. In that illuminating talk, printed here for the first time, she focuses on what 'English Ballet’ is. Combined with her 1955 article, Some Problems of Ballet Today, and Sir Peter Wright’s fascinating Madam’s Memorial Address, this volume raises questions as meaningful today as they were when de Valois first addressed them. 

In an increasingly connected dance world, what does it mean to have a national style? Why is a national style important? How might a national style be identified, developed and nurtured? This volume provides thought-provoking and fascinating reading for all lovers of ballet, dance and art.

Oberon Books, UK | 978-1-84943-107-1 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | HB
Ballet Boyz
$35.41 ex GST
$38.95 inc GST

Ballet Boyz

Michael Nunn and Billy Trevitt

Balletboyz was founded in 2001 by Michael Nunn and William Trevitt, previous lead dancers with The Royal Ballet. This innovative new company has made a dramatic mark on the British dance scene thrilling audiences and dance critics alike with its exhilarating mix of award winning repertoire, performance style and high artistic standards mixing multimedia with contemporary dance. These are the rebels of ballet appealing to a wider audience than ever before, a Balletboyz show is more like a rock concert than a traditional ballet performance.

With more demi-gods than demi-pliés, the Balletboyz know how to rock the dance world and turn everything you ever thought about ballet on its head.

Oberon Books UK | 978-1-84943-050-0 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB
Being a Dancer
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Being a Dancer

Advice from Dancers and Choreographers

Lyndsey Winship

How do I get a job as a dancer? Where and when should I train? How can I protect my body from injury? How do I become a choreographer?

These and many more such questions asked by young or aspiring dancers are answered in this book – the most revealing and instructive book yet on what it means to be a dancer.

Here is advice from some of the best dancers and choreographers in the world, crossing the fields of ballet, contemporary, South Asian dance, musical theatre and hip hop, and covering subjects both motivational and mundane, from tapping into your own reserves of creativity and resilience, to the important matter of when to eat your pre-show banana.

The twenty-five experts in these pages have performed with the likes of the Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, Rambert, Matthew Bourne’s New Adventures and BalletBoyz; they range from stars of the West End stage to TV talent-show successes and Kylie’s backing dancers – as well as some of Britain’s leading choreographers.

They are Carlos Acosta, Matthew Bourne, Teneisha Bonner, Darcey Bussell, Lauren Cuthbertson, Maxine Doyle, Tommy Franzén, Adam Garcia, Jonathan Goddard, Matthew Golding, Melissa Hamilton, Wayne McGregor, Steven McRae, Stephen Mear, Cassa Pancho, Seeta Patel, Arlene Phillips, Arthur Pita, Kate Prince, Matthew Rees, Tamara Rojo, Kenrick ‘H2O’ Sandy, Hofesh Shechter, Aaron Sillis and Marlon ‘Swoosh’ Wallen.

Read the review from the Sydney Arts Guide here.

Nick Hern Book, Uk | 978-1-84842-462-3 | Sales Rights: Australia/NZ only | PB
Birmingham Royal Ballet
$45.41 ex GST
$49.95 inc GST

Birmingham Royal Ballet

Birmingham Royal Ballet

'I came to Birmingham with the view to being creative, and today I believe we have not only successfully secured the future of the Company, but the whole dance culture in the city of Birmingham. We are geared for great things.'- David Bintley, BRB Director

Twenty years ago, Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB) took the brave step to set up on its own in Birmingham. It was the making of this marvellous company of dancers and dance makers. Now one of the foremost international ballet companies in the world, this book celebrates this story through stunning pictures.

Fully illustrated with stunning photographs, and classically put together this will make a beautiful gift book for all ballet lovers. Wonderful productions, wonderful dancers, a fairy tale made real.

Oberon Books, UK | 978-1-84943-440-9 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB
$81.82 ex GST
$90.00 inc GST


The Royal Ballet

Carlos Acosta is the most iconic dancer of our times, a genius of ballet and an international star. This superb quality photo-led book is published to mark Acosta’s farewell season; an exciting retrospective to capture his greatest performances with The Royal Ballet.

With tributes from three successive Royal Ballet Directors: Sir Anthony Dowell, Dame Monica Mason and the present Royal Ballet Director Kevin O’Hare, Associate Director Jeanetta Lawrence and various dancers of the Royal Ballet.

Carlos Acosta at The Royal Ballet is a tribute to his phenomenal success and popularity with Royal Ballet audiences since 1998. The book contains over 150 images of Carlos on stage and in rehearsal. Ballet photographs include his own production of Don Quixote, Requiem, Apollo, Romeo and Juliet, La Fille mal gardée, Sleeping Beauty, Judas Tree and Winter Dreams, plus many more.

This book is a unique record of his time with The Royal Ballet and a must-have book for all dance fans.

Oberon Books, UK | 978-1-78319-890-0 | Sales Rights: Australia/NZ only | HB
Children in Theatre: From the audition to working in professional theatre
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Children in Theatre: From the audition to working in professional theatre

A guide for children and their parents.

Jo Hawes

Performing children have a very special, and to some extent privileged, existence which sometimes sets them apart from their peers. Parents are often excluded from this world but are expected to support them all the way. Many don’t know how and while there is no shortage of advice and lessons in how to sing, dance and act there is very little authoritative advice on how to audition which is the first, most basic hurdle through which all performers have to jump.

This book will help children and their parents navigate their way through all of this: to advise, guide, inform and demystify the wonderful world of live theatre. It is packed full of practical advice and information on all aspects of the life of a child actor.

Makes a splendid job of debunking many of the mysteries in what, for many parents and children, is a very strange, unknown world… it’s evidently written from the heart … excellent –  The Stage

Oberon Books | 978-1-84943-127-9 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB
Currency Companion to Music and Dance in Australia
$45.45 ex GST
$49.99 inc GST

Currency Companion to Music and Dance in Australia

John Whiteoak and Aline Scott-Maxwell (eds)
This publication is unique in its comprehensiveness and recognition of cultural diversity and a broad notion of community. It covers the history of concert music, opera, ballet, music teaching, composition, instruments, venues, union activity, Aboriginal music, and all forms of popular and folk music and dance. It embraces the wide variety of immigrant influences from Europe, America and particularly the Pacific. There's sound art, computer music, electroacoustics, belly dance, debutante balls, subcultures, music videos and much more. Over two hundred academics, practitioners and private researchers from all parts of Australia and beyond are among this book's contributors.

'A quick look at the contents, which places Football Songs next to Free Jazz, gives you some idea of its open-mindedness. It serves a much-needed purpose in informing us about many kinds of Australian music and dance missed by other reference books. Highly recommended.' Lucky Oceans, The Planet, ABC Radio National.

  • For more information and reviews, visit John Whiteoak's website:

Currency House | 978-0-95812-131-6 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | HB
Feldenkrais for Actors
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$26.99 inc GST

Feldenkrais for Actors

How to Do Less and Discover More

Victoria Worsley

'The Feldenkrais Method is unique... I haven't found any other movement study that opens up such a rich and continuing area of enquiry' John Wright, from his Foreword

Spontaneity, sensitivity, simplicity and flexibility in any situation are just some of the qualities that the Feldenkrais Method has inspired in performers around the world. It uses movement to enable you to feel, adapt and respond in new ways – not just in limited, habitual patterns – thereby increasing your physical, emotional and mental potential.

Written by an experienced actor, theatre-maker and Feldenkrais practitioner, Feldenkrais for Actors leads you through a range of topics where using the Method can help, such as:

  • Presence and Posture
  • The Role of Tension
  • Emotion, Character and Creativity
  • Voice and Breath
  • Injury and Anxiety

Also included are dozens of exercises and lessons so that you can experience how the Method will help you in practice.

Feldenkrais for Actors is the result of thirty years of study and experience of the Method, and the benefits it can bring. It is invaluable for actors at any stage of their career, as well as for singers, dancers, musicians, martial artists, athletes and more.

Read the review by Christopher Tomkinson. 


Nick Hern Books, UK | 978-1-84842-417-3 | Sales Rights: Australia/NZ only | PB
Frederick Ashton
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Frederick Ashton

Founder Choreographer of the Royal Ballet

Cristina Franchi

The centenary of the birth of Frederick Ashton was marked in 2004. Founder Choreographer of The Royal Ballet, whose work defined the English style of ballet, was inspired to dance by Anna Pavlova and encouraged by Ninette de Valois (Founder of the Royal Ballet). Ashton's career as dancer, choreographer and director spans the Company's history from its earliest days. His influence is still seen today in the repertory and style that informs the Company, with ballets such as La Fille mal Gardée, Ondine and Façade. This is one of the first of a series of books in the Royal Opera House Heritage Series, featuring a unique collection of images from the Royal Opera House Archives. The Series celebrates some of the legendary figures from the world of ballet and opera who have been associated with the Royal Opera House and its resident Companies, The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera.

Oberon Books | 978-1-84002-461-6 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB
Horse's Mouth, The
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Horse's Mouth, The

How Handspring and the National Theatre made 'War Horse'

Mervyn Millar
War Horse has been an international stage phenomenon. Since its first appearance on stage in 2007, it has been seen by thousands of people and is currently been produced as a Hollywood film, directed by Steven Spielberg. The London production was showered with awards including Olivier, Evening Standard and London Critics' Circle Theatre Awards, all praising it for its innovative use of puppetry. The play will shortly commence a new run in New York, running simultaneously with the UK production .

This new book gives readers a superb overview of the process of making the magnificent puppets which are at the centre of War Horse. War Horse is in fact the third in a trilogy of animal plays devoted to Chimpanzees, Giraffes and Horses which Handspring made between 2000 and 2007. This book puts War Horse into that context.

This book gives you a peek behind the scenes, describing how Tom Morris, director at the National Theatre, interacted with Handspring in developing ideas for the staging of the piece. It also gives a clear account of how the puppets were designed and constructed. Finally it gives a fascinating account of the way the puppeteers were trained to use these complex mechanical animals, taking the reader through workshops, rehearsals and up to the thrilling first performances.

Definitely one for the drama department library –  Teaching Drama

Oberon Books, UK | 978-1-84943-059-3 | Sales rights: Australia/NZ | PB