Beautiful ballet Madame Butterfly in Sheffield

Michela Paolacci with Northern Ballet Dancers in Northern Ballet's Madame Butterfly, 2012
Michela Paolacci with Northern Ballet Dancers in Northern Ballet's Madame Butterfly, 2012

Northern Ballet’s Madame Butterfly dances into the Lyceum Theatre in Sheffield from 18th to 22nd September.

Northern Ballet’s Madame Butterfly is based on the original Belasco play that inspired the great opera.

This heart-rending tale of love and infidelity, involves a young geisha who marries Lieutenant Pinkerton, a dashing naval officer, only to be abandoned by him while carrying his unborn child.

The loyal Butterfly awaits her husband’s return, valiantly raising their son alone in a society which has ostracised her.

When Pinkerton eventually returns to Nagaski with his new American wife, Butterfly’s doomed fate and that of her young son are sealed.

Madame Butterfly is directed and choreographed by the Company’s Artistic Director, David Nixon OBE, who originally created the piece on his wife, Yoko Ichino, the internationally renowned ballerina, who is now Ballet Mistress and Academy Associate Director at Northern Ballet.

David said he was looking forward to bringing the production to Sheffield audiences.

“When creating Madame Butterfly, I wanted to incorporate an aesthetic of the traditional Japanese culture and music,” he said.

“I wanted to portray the dilemma of Butterfly who tries to change the perception of her culture, only to be betrayed by her newly adopted beliefs.”

He added: “Her freedom is only achieved by returning to her roots. Our re-orchestration of Puccini’s wonderful music, to which we have incorporated traditional Japanese music, has resulted in a fluid and dramatically powerful score for this ballet, which blends traditional Japanese dance styles with classical ballet.”

Tickets are on sale now, priced from £12-£34 and are available by calling the Box Office on 0114 249 6000 or online at