The Australian Ballet

5 Reasons to see Coppelia

There are so many reasons to see the adorable 19th-century fantasy Coppélia. Here are just a few of them.

Gallery4 900x1200 7

The Laughs

George Balanchine said, “Just as Giselle is ballet’s great tragedy, so Coppélia is its great comedy.” The ballet rollicks along with a tender eye for human frailty.

Leanne Stojmenov. Photo Branco Gaica.

Andrew Goldie 41 1600x800

Delicious Designs

Kristian Fredrikson contrasts the warm harvest colours of the village with the exotic automatons in Dr Coppelius’ shadowy work room. His tutus for the Dance of the Hours, with their night-sky blues, stars and moons, are a particular triumph.

Dana Stephensen in her Dance of the Hours tutu. Photo Andrew Goldie.

Gallery03 900x1200

Living Doll

The passage where Swanilda, posing as Coppélia, “comes to life” is a virtuoso performance for the ballerina, who must mimic robotically stiff limbs melting to human softness.

Leanne Stojmenov. Photo Justin Smith.

Gallery2 900x1200 10

Real or fake?

Mad scientists, mechanical dolls, the ineffable line between the real and the fake – just as these themes were compelling for an Industrial Revolution-age audience fascinated by the growing intricacy of machines and automatons, they are compelling for us in the age of clones, AI, CGI, fake news and the “uncanny valley”.

Lenane Stojmenov and Damien Welch in Coppelia. Photo Banco Gaica.

600 x 800 LW110


Who doesn’t love a pair of lively, battling lovers who melt into a final ecstatic embrace? From The Taming of the Shrew to His Girl Friday to Silver Linings Playbook, it’s a narrative that never gets old.

Dimity Azoury and Jarryd Madden. Photo Lynette Wills.

Australian Ballets Coppelia 1st Cast Branco Gaica 3 5 2010 84 600x600