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Kylián Festival:

Day after
Yesterday

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Running
31. May–​11. June
Scene
Main Stage
Duration
2 h 30 min / 2 Breaks

A celebration of Jiří Kylián’s artistry

The Norwegian National Ballet is proud to present the Kylián Festival! In Day after Yesterday, we look back and enjoy a long-awaited reunion with the Kylián classics Forgotten Land, No More Play, Petite Mort and Symphony of Psalms.

Four timeless dance works danced to a full orchestra 

Modern ballet without a plot but packed with poetry, ingenuity and musicality: Jiří Kylián has breathed new life into ballet as an art form. We are now celebrating his work with two different performances that demonstrate the amazing range of his artistry. Day after Yesterday features four classics from his early career, all performed with a full orchestra, and one of them also with a chorus.  

Forgotten Land (1981) explores memories, events and people who have been lost or forgotten over time to the music of Benjamin Britten. The Edvard Munch painting The Dance of Life, which depicts a woman in three stages of life, was a great inspiration for Kylián when creating this work. 

No More Play (1988) is also inspired by art, more specifically a small sculpture by Alberto Giacometti: a slightly deformed board game with two wooden pieces that resemble human figures. “But as you begin to play this mysterious game, you start to learn its laws – only sometimes too late” said Kylián about the work. 

In Petite Mort (1991), we see six women and six men alternating between duets and group sequences to music from two of Mozart’s most popular piano concertos. Petite mort is French for ‘little death’ and is usually used as a euphemism for an orgasm. According to the choreographer himself, “The eternal themes of everything I have done are about being born, dying and what we do in between.”  

Last but not least: Symphony of Psalms (1978) set to Stravinsky’s choral symphony of the same name and, according to Kylián himself, brings together dance and the divine. The Opera Orchestra is performing in the pit together with the Opera Chorus. 

Oslo Opera House full of Kylián 

Jiří Kylián not only creates dance works, but in recent years has also worked with photography and video, sculptures and installations.  

In May and June 2025, we will be celebrating this unique artist with our very own Kylián Festival: Wings of Time in the Oslo Opera House! It is also a tribute to the close partnership between him and the Norwegian National Ballet that has spanned over 30 years. 

The entire Oslo Opera House will be filled with Kylián’s art: We are exhibiting a number of his installations and photographs, in addition to showing films – and on the Main Stage, the National Ballet will be dancing seven of his ballets divided into two programmes. 

The Kylián Festival is the largest showcase to date of his art in Norway, and with Jiří Kylián himself as curator and on hand to set the stage for a rare event.  

Free introduction one hour before the performance (in norwegian).

Artistic team and cast

  • Choreography
    Jiří Kylián
  • Conductor
    Vello Pähn
  • Participants
    Norwegian National Ballet, Norwegian National Opera Orchestra

Forgotten Land 

Choreography Jiří Kylián 
Music Benjamin Britten
Set designer and costume designer John F. Macfarlane 
Lighting designer Hans-Joachim Haas 
Participants Norwegian National Ballet, Opera orchestra

No More Play 

Choreography Jiří Kylián 
Music Anton Webern
Set designer and costume designer Jiří Kylián 
Lighting designer Jiří Kylián (concept), Joop Caboort (realization) 
Participants Norwegian National Ballet 

Petite Mort 

Choreographer Jiří Kylián 
Music Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Set designer Jiří Kylián 
Costume designer Joke Visser 
Lighting designer Jiří Kylián (concept), Joop Caboort (realization) 
Participants Norwegian National Ballet, Opera orchestra

Symphony of Psalms 

Choreographer Jiří Kylián 
Music Igor Stravinsky
Set designer William Katz 
Costume designer Joop Stokvis 
Lighting designer Jiří Kylián (concept), Joop Caboort (realization) 
Participants Norwegian National Ballet, Opera orchestra

Price
150–870 kr
  • Saturday 31. May
    18:00 / Main Stage
  • Tuesday 3. June
    19:00 / Main Stage
  • Wednesday 4. June
    19:00 / Main Stage
  • Tuesday 10. June
    19:00 / Main Stage
  • Wednesday 11. June
    19:00 / Main Stage