10 Fun Facts about Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo – aka The Trocks – the World’s Foremost Drag Comedy Ballet Company back in Nottingham this October

    Ballet’s Very Grande Dames are back!

    Dance Consortium presents the world’s most fabulous foremost all-male comic ballet company 

    Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo

    Twelve-venue UK tour 6 September to 30 October opens at London’s Peacock Theatre on 6 September with 13 performances

    This autumn sees Dance Consortium’s 50th tour of the world’s best international contemporary dance – and its sixth tour of the iconic Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo.

    Based in New York, The Trocks are loved world-wide for their hilarious homages and sassy spoofs of classical ballet. Their impeccable comic timing is matched by their immaculate technique and daring physicality. Every performance froths with tutus and testosterone, blush-pink ballet shoes, false eyelashes and prima ballerina attitude as the 16 dancers transform into different personas, male and female.   

    The company was founded in 1974 in the wake of the Stonewall Riots. Early performances were held on the makeshift stage of the West Side Discussion Group, an offshoot of the groundbreaking Mattachine Society, one of the first LGBTQ+ rights groups in the US. 

    On their latest visit to the UK, The Trocks are bringing three different programmes of beloved classical ballets, modern works and iconic music by Tchaikovsky, Chopin, Vivaldi and Massenet.

    The first of two programmes at London’s Peacock Theatre begins with the company’s signature work, Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II). Based on the original choreography by Ivanov, this elegiac phantasmagoria of variations and ensembles sweeps audiences into the magical realm of swans (and birds). After the interval, either a classical pas de deux or a modern work is announced from the stage, depending on the company’s mood on the night. Then comes Nightcrawlers, set to Chopin nocturnes and choreographed by founding artistic director Peter Anastos as a sequel to Yes, Virginia, Another Piano Ballet. Yes, Virginia…was a parody of Jerome Robbins’ ‘Dances at a Gathering’ so it was only a matter of time before the Trocks set their sights on ‘In the Night’, Robbins’ other great Chopin ballet.  The Bolshoi Ballet-inspired Valpurgeyeva Noch, staged by Elena Kunikova after Leonid Lavrovsky, which Russians have long respected as a specimen of high Soviet balletic camp completes the programme. 

    The second London programme opens with Les Sylphides as an abstract classical ballet with atmospheric suggestions of ‘Giselle’ and ‘La Sylphide’, staged here by Alexandre Minz. The sentiments aroused spring from the sublime music of Chopin and its evocation of dreams, desire and melancholy. Then the mystery pas de deux (or short modern work) is followed by Vivaldi Suite, an homage to Balanchine. The evening closes with the Spanish-styled Majisimas, a seductive demonstration of the intricate beauty of classical ballet technique, staged by The Trocks’ ballet master Raffaele Morra and danced to music from Jules Massenet’s 1885 opera ‘El Cid’.

    After the London run, the company sets off on tour with a third programme. It opens with The Trocks’ signature work Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II) which is followed by a mystery pas de deux or short modern work, announced from the stage on the night. Next up is the company’s celebration of Balanchine, Vivaldi Suite. Finally comes Raymonda’s Wedding, the traditionally confusing divertissements from the final act of ‘Raymonda’. A ballet in three acts and fifteen scenes, ‘Raymonda’ has baffled audiences since its premiere at the Mariinsky Theatre in 1898.  With choreography after Marius Petipa, The Trocks ignore all the plot intrigues and go straight for the happy ending!

    1 The Trocks don’t come from Monte Carlo at all. They’re from New York where they started life in the Meatpacking District as a downtown drag act in 1974

    2 Over the years they have performed in 651 cities in more than 41 countries on 130 worldwide tours

    3 In 2019 they racked up nearly 62,000 miles on tour. Multiply that by the number of dancers and they could have sent a dancer to the moon and back twice!

    4 The company’s 16 dancers come from China, Cuba, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland and the USA

    5 The Trocks head off on tour with 60 costumes, 80 pairs of earrings and 110 sets of false eyelashes

    6 It takes each Trock 90 minutes to put on their make-up – and 60 minutes to take it all off again

    7 Every dancer has a ballerina and a male danseur alter-ego with their own stage names – look out for Jacques D’Aniels, Holly Dey-Abroad and Minnie Van Driver

    8 They have two degrees of separation from Gonzo the Great, Rudolf Nureyev and the Queen. They have danced with Miss Piggy, Kermit and the Russian superstar on TV and met Prince Charles after taking part in the Royal Variety Performance

    9 They’ve performed their signature work, The Dying Swan, over 3500 times

    10 A night out at The Trocks has been described as ‘one of the most entertaining shows on planet Earth’

    Tuesday 6 September – Saturday 17 September 

    The Peacock Theatre, LONDON

    Portugal St, London WC2A 2HT
    Tickets: 020 7863 8222 / www.sadlerswells.com/

    Tuesday 6 September – Saturday 10 September at 7.30pm 

    Saturday 10 September at 2.30pm
    Programme A: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Nightcrawlers, Valpurgeyeva Noch

    Monday 12 September – Saturday 17 September at 7.30pm 

    Saturday 17 September at 2.30pm

    Programme B: Les Sylphides, work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Majisimas

    Monday 19 & Tuesday 20 September at 7.30pm

    The Marlowe Theatre CANTERBURY

    The Friars, Canterbury CT1 2AS
    Tickets: 01227 787787 / www.marlowetheatre.com
    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Friday 23 & Saturday 24 September at 7.30pm

    BRIGHTON Dome 

    Church St, Brighton BN1 1UE

    Tickets: 01273 709709 / https://brightondome.org/

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Friday 30 September & Saturday 1 October at 7.30pm

    NORWICH Theatre Royal

    Theatre St, Norwich NR2 1RL
    Tickets: 01603 630000 / www.norwichtheatre.org

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Tuesday 4 & Wednesday 5 October at 7.30pm

    Royal Concert Hall NOTTINGHAM

    Theatre Square, Nottingham NG1 5ND
    Tickets: 0115 989 5555 / www.trch.co.uk

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding 

    Friday 7 & Saturday 8 October at 7.30pm

    BUXTON Opera House 

    Water St, Buxton SK17 6XN

    Tickets: 01298 72190 / www.buxtonoperahouse.org.uk

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding 

    Tuesday 11 & Wednesday 12 October at 7.30pm

    HULL New Theatre

    Kingston Square, Hull HU1 3HF
    Tickets:  01482 300306 / www.hulltheatres.co.uk

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Friday 14 & Saturday 15 October at 7.30pm

    Alhambra Theatre BRADFORD 

    Morley St, Bradford BD7 1AJ
    Tickets: 01274 432000 / www.bradford-theatres.co.uk (on sale soon)

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Tuesday 18 & Wednesday 19 October at 7.30pm

    NEWCASTLE Theatre Royal

    100 Grey St, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 6BR

    Tickets: 0844 811 2121 / www.theatreroyal.co.uk

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Friday 21 & Saturday 22 October at 7.30pm

    EDINBURGH Festival Theatre at 7.30pm

    13-29 Nicolson St, Edinburgh EH8 9FT
    Tickets: 0131 529 6000 / www.capitaltheatres.com

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding


    Tuesday 25 October at 7.30pm

    Hall for Cornwall TRURO 

    Back Quay, Truro TR1 2LL

    Tickets: 01872 262466 / www.hallforcornwall.co.uk (on sale in June)

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    Friday 28 & Saturday 29 October at 7.30pm

    Grand Opera House BELFAST 

    2 – 4 Great Victoria St, Belfast BT2 7HR

    Tickets: 028 9024 1919 / www.goh.co.uk

    Programme: Le Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Act II), work to be announced, Vivaldi Suite, Raymonda’s Wedding

    What's on elsewhere?

    Gordon Buchanan 30 Years in the Wild – The Anniversary Tour

    The Anniversary Tour

    Hexagon Reading

    20 Mar 2023

    After a sell-out tour last year, Gordon Buchanan is going back on tour, Gordon’s journey is a remarkable story to tell.

    Giovanni Pernice – Made in Italy – 2023 Tour

    Giovanni Pernice invites you to join him on a journey to his homeland for his brand new 2023 production

    Marina Theatre Lowestoft

    3 May 2023

    World class dancer, and Strictly Come Dancing 2021 champion, Giovanni Pernice invites you to join...

    The Beekeeper of Aleppo

    Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.

    Norwich Theatre Royal

    9 May 2023 - 13 May 2023

    Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.

    Alfie Boe

    Leicester 2023

    Glasgow Royal Concert Hall

    3 Oct 2023

    Following his very special evening with at the Royal Albert Hall IN October 2022 celebrating...

    Room on the Broom

    Jump on board the broom with the witch and her cat

    The Hawth Crawley

    11 Mar 2023 - 12 Mar 2023

    Jump on board the broom with the witch and her cat in Tall Stories’ fun-filled adaptation of Room on the Broom, the best-selling picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

    Six The Musical

    The international smash hit musical SIX makes its royal return

    Edinburgh Playhouse

    2 May 2023 - 6 May 2023

    Multi award-winning, with a spectacularly successful sound-track storming charts across the globe, this sell-out Tudor take-off has ‘an incredibly strong and powerful message. Boundary-pushing, genre-redefining’ (The Australian) and is ‘pure entertainment’ (The New York Times). From Tudor Queens to Pop Princesses, the six wives of Henry VIII take to the mic to tell their tales, remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an 80-minute celebration of 21st century girl power. These Queens may have green sleeves but their lipstick is rebellious red. Think you know the rhyme, think again… Divorced. Beheaded. LIVE!

    The Beekeeper of Aleppo

    Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.

    Nottingham Playhouse

    3 Feb 2023 - 25 Feb 2023

    Moving, powerful, compassionate and beautifully written, The Beekeeper of Aleppo is a testament to the triumph of the human spirit.

    An Inspector Calls

    Stephen Daldry’s record-breaking and multi award-winning production for the National Theatre of An Inspector Calls returns.

    Liverpool Empire

    14 Mar 2023 - 18 Mar 2023

    Daldry’s visionary, radical, challenging version of JB Priestley’s classic thriller, hailed as the theatrical event...
    - Advertisement -