French company Ballet Preljocaj will perform its sinister, sexy, contemporary retelling of Snow White at the Sydney Opera House in June. Today’s announcement follows recent news that the company will perform the full-length ballet at Arts Centre Melbourne in August.

Ballet Preljocaj’s Snow White. Photograph © Jean-Claude Carbonne

Choreographed to Mahler symphonies (which date from the same era as the original tale), the production features witty costuming by visionary French fashion designer Jean-Paul Gaultier as well as extravagant sets by Thierry Leproust. It was first seen in Australia at QPAC as part of Brisbane Festival in 2016, when it won the Helpmann Award for Best Ballet. In a four-and-a-half star review, Limelight described it as “hypnotic” and “a must-see production”.

The visually ravishing interpretation remains essentially faithful to the Grimm Brothers’ original 19th century fairy tale, but French choreographer Angelin Preljocaj has given it an enthralling erotic charge. Speaking to Limelight in 2016, he described the story as “dark and vicious and complex”.

“I was very keen to tell a story, offer something magical and enchanted. I have followed the version by the Grimm Brothers, with just a few personal variations based on my own analysis of the symbols in the tale,” he said in today’s announcement.

“The wicked stepmother is without doubt the central character in the tale. She is the one who I examine through her narcissistic determination not to give up on seduction and her role as a woman, even if it means sacrificing her stepdaughter,” he explained.

The adults-only production is recommended for ages 12+.


Snow White plays at the Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House, June 6 – 10. Tickets go on sale to the general public on Monday March 19 at 9am

The production also plays at the State Theatre, Arts Centre Melbourne, August 1 – 5

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