Worlds Beyond 

I feel very privileged by the fact that the Norwegian 
National ballet has chosen an evening predominantly 
consisting of my work for their first "ballet event" 
at their extraordinary new theatre in Bjørvika.
I think, that it is not only a very brave move by the 
Company's direction, to choose the work of a "living" 
choreographer for such an immensely important occasion, 
but it also shows their determination to demonstrate, 
that a "national theatre" should never be a "national
museum"! The evening, which you are invited to take 
part in, is predominantly conceived as a "gift to the 
public ". 

I want the audience not to be only passive spectators 
of this event, but to participate in it actively. 
My wish is, that this event will become much more a 
"trip" for all participants rather than just a 
theatrical experience. 
For this occasion, I have decided to do away with the 
"iron curtain" which for centuries has divided the space 
between the "artists" and the "audience". This wonderful 
house belongs to everybody, and it should be experienced 
like that.

In our concept, the audience will not enter the auditorium 
in the traditional way, but it will be lead through secret 
passages behind and under the stage on a route with 
installations, in which dancers and musicians are engaged. 
After arriving on the stage, the public will proceed over 
the orchestra pit to their seats. Only then, the actual 
dance performance will start.

The choice for such an introduction to the performance, 
has several reasons: 

1. I find the "twilight ", which people experience, arriving 
   from their everyday work, into the magic world of the
   theatre, a very sensitive and vulnerable process. And it 
   is very wonderful to experience it as such.

2. The theatre was built with taxpayer's money, so in my 
   eyes, there is no better way to discover the theatre, 
   than by sharing it with the people from the other side, 
   the dancers, actors, musicians and stagehands. 

3. Furthermore, I think, that it is most exciting for the 
   members of the public to see all the machinery, the stage 
   equipment and all the "prosaic things " which finally 
   contribute to the wonderful metamorphosis, and the magic 
   of a performance.

4. Standing on stage, and looking into the audience is a 
   remarkable experience, and can never be compared with 
   the experience of a person looking from the other side. 
   We are standing on a platform on which every conceivable 
   situation can happen. It is the mirror of the world itself.

Later when you are confined to the 1st balcony, row 5, seat 22 
(should you happen to be a holder of this ticket, please drop 
me a line with your thoughts about this performance) - you will 
be able to say: "Yes, I stood there, on that stage." 
In this "night at the ballet" there are many more things to 
experience, than just dance. When you decide to share this 
evening with us, please bring three things along with you: 

1. Readiness for adventure
2. Open and receptive mind and heart, and 
3. Plenty of time.

Finally, I wish to share again with you my long-time conviction: 
I firmly believe, that "national theatres" (and I mean even 
theatres as beautiful as yours) will have no chance to survive 
unless they understand that they are not only "national museums". 
They must create a climate in which new artistic developments 
can take place and unconventional ideas can be conceived 
(next to all the classics from the past ) no matter how much 
risk is involved! Only then they will truly come to life, 
and serve the people.

If we don' t take the responsibility to create now, our children 
will have nothing to look at, nothing to read, nothing to listen 
to and ultimately nothing to feel!

For all that, we need your support, and the support of the 
people you have voted into office. We all need to dream...

Jiří Kylián, The Hague, September 6th, 2007