Given its premiere by The Royal Ballet in 1965 with Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn dancing the title roles, Kenneth MacMillan's first full-evening ballet has become a signature work for the Company, enjoying great popularity around the world. From the outset, the production teems with life and colour as the townspeople, market traders and servants of the rival Montagues and Capulets go about their daily business in vibrant crowd scenes. But Romeo and Juliet take centre stage for those great pas de deux: the meeting in the ballroom, the balcony scene, the morning after the wedding and the final devastating tomb scene. Although The Royal Ballet has performed Romeo and Juliet over 400 times, each performance and pairing is subtly different and Lauren Cuthbertson and Federico Bonelli are utterly captivating in the title roles.
George Martin is one of the world's most famous record producers and yet, despite a long and varied career, he is most celebrated for his era-defining work with the Beatles. The six-CD box set Produced By George Martin commemorates his 50 years behind the desk. The discs are in chronological order and loosely themed–early years, comedy recordings, 60s hits, orchestral, etc. While generally presented in a chronological fashion, each disc is likewise aptly subtitled. Disc one – "Crazy Rhythms" – features pre-rock & roll big band ("High Society"), skiffle ("Don't You Rock Me Daddy-O"), and dance music ("Scottish Polka" and "Saturday Jump"). In addition, there are tracks from other well-known yet rarely heard artists such as Jimmy Shand ("Bluebell Polka") and Rolf Harris ("Sun Arise"). The "Transports of Delight" on disc two highlight spoken-word and comedy sides produced by Martin in the '50s and '60s.