The Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre in Leeds has announced a new season of dance that will reopen the theatre for the first time since March 2020.


 DeNada Dance Theatre returns on 12 October 2021 to open the season with Mariposa. A transgender retelling of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly, this new dance-drama from Artistic Director Carlos Pons Guerra is set in post-revolution Cuba and passionately explores what we are ready to sacrifice in order to be loved and accepted.

As part of Light Night Leeds, the world première of Mutation Space will take place on 14 and 15 October 2021 featuring dance artists Fubunation. This immersive dance and visual experience explores the human impact on our environment and health, and will be performed three times each evening during the festival.


Families can look forward to the world première of Northern Ballet’s children’s ballet Pinocchio from 26 – 30 October 2021. A perfect treat for little ones during the half term holidays, see wooden puppet Pinocchio come to life as he proves himself worthy of becoming a real boy. Featuring live music, this original ballet is choreographed by Gavin McCaig and is based on The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi. The ballet will return for a second week of performances from 07 – 11 December 2021.


On 04 November 2021, Welsh dance company Ballet Cymru also returns with a new ballet based on the well-known story Giselle. Featuring a new score by acclaimed composer and harpist Catrin Finch, Ballet Cymru puts their own unique stamp on this tale of love and loss, bringing relevance, poignancy and grittiness to this most romantic of ballets.


In an exciting first for the theatre, Seeta Patel Dance will reimagine the iconic ballet The Rite of Spring in the powerful Indian dance style Bharatanatyam. A retelling of the pagan folk story set to Igor Stravinsky’s famous score, the performance will showcase some of the finest Indian classical dance talent. Opening with a short performance from Leeds’ own South Asian Arts-uk, The Rite of Spring will be performed for one night only on 10 November 2021.


On 17 November 2021 international dance artist Didy Veldman brings her company Humanoove back to Leeds with @ HOME. Best known in the UK for her productions for Rambert and Northern Ballet (Carmen, A Street Car Named Desire), Veldman’s newest dance work looks at feelings around connection, self-worth and relationships in the place where we should feel most ourselves, and features a new score by composer and multi-instrumentalist Sabio Janiak.


To close the season on 22 and 23 December 2021, The Nutcracker and I is a family-friendly multi-media show where one pianist and one ballerina combine their performance with animated digital projections. Created and performed by critically-acclaimed pianist Alexandra Dariescu, The Nutcracker and I features choreography by Jenna Lee (Northern Ballet’s Puss in Boots) and hand-drawn animations by Yeast Culture.


The Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre’s autumn season is a great opportunity to return to a local theatre and see high quality dance at fantastic value. Tickets can be booked online at, by calling the Box Office on 0113 220 8008 or in person at the Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre, Northern Ballet, Quarry Hill, Leeds LS2 7P

Our main picture by Nigel Norrington is of The Nutcrackert and I

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