A scenic escapade in the Scottish Highlands, this charming Balanchine ballet features brisk footwork and a wistfully romantic pas de deux.
New York City Ballet first appeared at the Edinburgh Festival in August 1952. George Balanchine was so impressed by the grandeur of the landscape, and the parade of the massed Scottish regiments in their stirring Night Tattoo, that he paid homage to the sweep and freshness of the highlands with this work, set to Mendelssohn’s early romantic symphony inspired by the composer’s 1829 visit to Scotland. Without recreating any specific ballet, Balanchine nevertheless freely evokes the situations and style of such 19th century ballet favorites as La Sylphide, which had had a Scotch locale, and served as a prototype for Michel Fokine’s Les Sylphides. For the spring 2009 revival of Scotch Symphony, Karin von Aroldingen, a ballet master and former Principal Dancer with NYCB, created a new set design.