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The Rite of Spring in assoc. with the New Zealand Listener

Where: Michael Fowler Centre, 111 Wakefield Street, Wellington

Restrictions: All Ages

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In the heart of winter, the NZSO summons up the primal forces of spring with its performance of Stravinsky’s most notorious ballet: The Rite of Spring. Written for a ballet of the same name, and choreographed by Vaslav Nijinsky, its Paris premiere in 1913 caused its audience to riot. Did the provocatively barbarous dancing and thumping of raucous music cause disgust and enrage some? Regardless, this work made Stravinsky’s name.

When Rite of Spring premiered in 1913, it was preceded in the programme by Les Sylphides, a ballet choreographed to music by Frederic Chopin. Legendary New Zealand pianist Michael Houstoun performs a selection of the original Chopin solo piano works that were later orchestrated for this ballet.

Nowadays, The Rite of Spring is considered one of the most influential and exciting works of the twentieth century, and concert hall performances enthral listeners with its driving irregular rhythms, innovative bitonality, eerily distinctive melodies, and heart-palpitating energy. This performance of Stravinsky’s stunning work will be accompanied by an immersive visual design by leading New Zealand creatives, Nocturnal.

The Rite of Spring is part of the NZSO Festival season. It can be included as part of a Podium Series subscription, flexi-subscription or purchased as part of the Festival package.


Gemma New, Conductor
Michael Houstoun, Piano
Nocturnal, Performance Visuals

Chopin, Polonaise in A Major, Op. 40 No. 1 Military
Chopin, Nocturne in A-flat Major, Op. 32 No. 2
Chopin, Valse in G-flat Major, Op. 70 No. 1
Chopin, Mazurka in D Major, Op. 33 No. 2
Chopin, Mazurka in C Major, Op. 67 No. 3
Chopin, Prelude in A Major, Op. 28 No. 7
Chopin, Valse in C-sharp Minor, Op. 64 No. 2
Chopin, Grande Valse Brillante in E-flat Major, Op.18
Stravinsky, The Rite of Spring

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