The choreography for the Michael Kunze / Sylvester Levay musical Elisabeth, which will open in The Netherlands Nov. 21, 1999, will be created by ballet choreographer Toer van Schaik. It will be the first choreography he's done for musical theatre.
Toer van Schaik started his career in 1955 at age 19 in the Netherlands Ballet. In 1959 he started studying sculpture at the Royal Academy for Visual Arts in The Hague. In 1965 he resumed his career as ballet dancer at the Netherlands National Ballet. He made his debut as choreographer in 1971 with the ballet Onvoltooid Verleden Tijd. Since 1976 he has served as resident choreographer for the Netherlands National Ballet and has made more than 30 works, which have also been performed by companies around the world.
Van Schaik's sculptures have been shown in art galleries in Amsterdam, Athens, New York and London. During the recent state visit by Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands to China, van Schaik was a guest of honour as a representative of Dutch culture.
His most recent choreography was in 1996, a collaboration with the artistic director of the Netherlands National Ballet, Wayne Eagling, on the critically-acclaimed Notenkraker en Muizenkoning, inspired by The Nutcracker. Van Schaik also designed the sets and costumes.
Elisabeth will be directed by Eddy Habema, with Pia Douwes recreating the role which she created in the original production in Vienna in 1992. Tickets will go in sale August 1999. -- by Maxim Bezembinder