'The Dark Crystal' is Coming Back – as a BalletMarch 31, 2021
While the pain of the The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance‘s cancelation still hasn’t faded (we deserve season 2, Netflix!) Jim Henson‘s creation will live on in some way or another. This time as…a ballet? That’s right, a ballet take on The Dark Crystal is in the works, and is coming to London’s Royal Opera House for its 2021-2022 season. Prepare yourself for some dancing puppets.
For its 2021-2022 season, the Royal Opera House in London is hosting an all-new, original ballet titled The Dark Crystal: Odyssey, based on Jim Henson’s 1982 fantasy film. A “new dance work for family audiences,” directed and choreographed by Wayne McGregor, the company describes the Dark Crystal ballet as (via io9) a “magical coming-of-age story.”
Here is the Royal Opera House’s announcement:
“The Royal Ballet presents Company Wayne McGregor in The Dark Crystal: Odyssey, a work for family audiences choreographed and directed by Wayne McGregor. Based on Jim Henson’s iconic 1982 film, this?magical coming-of-age story?brings together a?team of world-class collaborators?including artists Brian and Wendy Froud, composer Joel Cadbury, digital designers kontrastmoment, lighting designer Lucy Carter, dramaturg Uzma Hameed,?costume designer Philip Delamore and face-and-body-artist Alex Box, with puppets and props from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop.”
So does that mean what you think it means? Gelfling, Skeksis, and Podling puppets dancing across an auspicious opera house stage? Yes, and yes — puppets and props for the show are being provided by Jim Henson’s Creature Shop and a spokesperson for Henson confirmed the production is made in full association with the Henson Company. The Dark Crystal Twitter account also confirmed that the ballet is currently in the works.
While it’s no The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance season 2, it’s nice that the fantasy world that Henson created is still living on, in some form or another. A ballet is still such a left-field choice, but one that has suited elaborate fantasy stories before, like Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and more. Even so, the idea of dancing puppets is still a little weird, especially the borderline terrifying puppets of The Dark Crystal.
According to the Royal Opera House website, more info is coming on June 1. In the meantime, do yourself a favor and watch Age of Resistance, by far one of Netflix’s most imaginative, most visually dazzling original titles that could have gone on to be hailed as a new fantasy classic — before it was abruptly cut short by the streamer, which canceled the series in September last year.
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