Symphony in C

Choreography by: George Balanchine

Music by: Georges Bizet

A grand classical masterpiece, Symphony in C dazzles audiences with over 50 dancers covered in Swarovski Elements and a spectacular finale uniting the entire cast. 

Georges Bizet composed his Symphony in C Major when he was a 17-year-old pupil of Charles Gounod at the Paris Conservatory. The manuscript was lost for decades and was published only after it was discovered in the Conservatory’s library in 1933. Balanchine first learned of the long-vanished score from Stravinsky. He required only two weeks to choreograph it as Le Palais de Cristal for the Paris Opera Ballet in 1947, where he was serving as a guest ballet master. When he revived the work the following year for New York City Ballet’s first program on October 11, 1948, he simplified the sets and costumes and changed the title. The ballet has remained a vital part of the Company’s repertory ever since. For the 2012 Spring Season, new costumes for the ballet were designed by Marc Happel, NYCB’s Director of Costumes. The new designs were created in collaboration with Swarovski, and the production features costumes, as well as newly designed crowns, headpieces, and earrings, all created using Swarovski Elements.

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Symphony No. 1 in C major (1855)
July 28, 1947, Paris Opéra Ballet, Théâtre National de L'Opéra, as Le Palais de Cristal
NYC Ballet Premiere
March 22, 1948, Ballet Society, City Center of Music and Drama, New York. NYCB: October 11, 1948, City Center of Music and Drama
Original Cast
Lycette Darsonval, Tamara Toumanova, Micheline Bardin, Madeleine Lafon, Alexandre Kalioujny, Roger Ritz, Michel Renault, Max Bozzoni

NYC Ballet Original Cast
Maria Tallchief, Nicholas Magallanes, Tanaquil Le Clercq, Francisco Moncion, Beatrice Tompkins, Herbert Bliss, Elise Reiman, John Taras
32 Min.
Costumes by
Karinska (1948); Marc Happel (2012)
Lighting by
Jean Rosenthal (original production); Mark Stanley (current production)