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The Fairy's Kiss


Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale The Ice Maiden, The Fairy’s Kiss tells the story of a boy cursed with a kiss, destined for immortality.

The Fairy’s Kiss was originally created in 1960 and only had one revival since, prior to Scottish Ballet. The original set design for the Royal Opera House’s original production was so complex that there were very few other ballets with which The Fairy’s Kiss could be performed. 

Scottish Ballet brought new life to the production in 2017 to mark the 25th anniversary of the death of its choreographer, Sir Kenneth MacMillan. While MacMillan rarely created fairytale ballets, it was the richness and complexity of Stravinsky’s score that lured him in. 

Last performed: The Fairy’s Kiss was last performed in autumn 2017. For current productions, visit our What’s On page.

Scottish Ballet premiere: Autumn 2017

Choreography: Sir Kenneth MacMillan
Music: Igor Stravinsky 
Design: Gary Harris
Répétiteur: Diana Curry
Guest Rehearsal Director: Donald MacLeary
Lighting: Simon Bennison 


‘Glacial, enigmatic charm’ 

The Herald


The List




Original Synopsis notes from the World Premiere performance of The Fairy’s Kiss. Royal Opera House, 12 April 1960.  

The Lullaby in the Storm
A mother with her child struggles through the storm. The Fairy with her attendants appears and pursues her. The Fairy separates the mother from her child. Passing villagers find the body of the mother, now dead, and guided by the Fairy, they find the child. The Fairy kisses him on the forehead. The villagers become frightened and taking the child with them, they run away.  

A Village Fête
The villagers gather for the fête. The child, now a young man, appears with his fiancée. A gypsy endeavours to tell the fortune of the young man and during the fortune telling the fiancée leaves with the villagers; left alone the young man discovers that the gypsy is the Fairy in disguise. She subjects him to her will, and promises him great happiness. Captivated, the young man is led to his fiancée.  

At the Mill
Guided by the Fairy, the young man arrives at the mill, where he finds his fiancée playing games among her friends. The fairy disappears. They all dance. The Fairy appears again, and the young man is confused. The fiancée leaves with her friends and the young man is once more left alone. The Fairy reappears and the young man mistakes her for his fiancée. Suddenly the Fairy throws off her cloak and, dumbfounded, the young man realises his mistake. He is defenceless before the supernatural power of the Fairy. His resistance overcome, she holds him in her power. She kisses him.  

The Lullaby of the Land Beyond Time and Place
The fiancée, lonely and sad, looks in vain for her lost love. The young man, now completely submissive to the power of the Fairy, is taken to the Land Beyond Time and Place; to live there eternally, marked by the kiss of the Fairy.