Canada's Ballet Jörgen is committed to telling Canadian stories by Canadian choreographers. For its next full-length ballet, director Bengt Jörgen turned to what he calls "perhaps the most quintessential Canadian story" of all time: Lucy Maud Montgomery's beloved 1908 novel Anne of Green Gables, about the flame-haired, precocious orphan Anne Shirley. Jörgen is choreographing the work, which will debut in Halifax, Nova Scotia (not far from Anne's fictional home in Avonlea, Prince Edward Island), on September 28 before embarking on a two-year tour of Canada and the U.S.
For Anne of Green Gables – The Ballet, Jörgen is collaborating with Alexander Levkovich, who's orchestrating a version of the Anne of Green Gables: The Musical score, and costume and set designer Sue LePage. "Anne is a strong, female character who's exuberant, bubbly and emotional, and made to dance," says Jörgen. "People connect with this work because she's human. It doesn't matter what time period you put Anne in; she's universal."