The Divine Horsemen (1969)


Divine Horsemen

Artists of the Australian Ballet - 1969 - Photographer Hugh Fisher
Photo Courtesy of Judith Chasin-Bennahum


The opening night program indicated:

The “Divine Horsemen” are those spirits or loa who may temporarily displace the conscious self of some person and manifest themselves through a living body. In the Caribbean area this process, which is commonly known as ‘possession” is said to be similar to that of a horse and its rider; and the loa in the “mounting” of a person takes over conscious power and control. In “possession,” consequently the person who has been mounted cannot and does not remember anything that happens during this period for it must be understood that the self must leave if the loa is to enter as one cannot be man and god simultaneously. Erzulie, Ghede and Damballah are only three members of a large pantheon, each of whom is archetypal and whose presences are invoked at communal gatherings. Divine Horsemen was the title of a book by Maya Deren and the choreographer is consequently indebted to his friend, the author.

Antony Tudor
Music / Composer
Werner Egk, Variations on a Caribbean Theme
First Performance
Sydney, Australia
Her Majesty’s Theatre
August 8, 1969
Australian Ballet
Original Cast
Rex McNeill, Gaileen Stock, Karl Welander, Colin Peasley, Alida Chase, Julie da Costa, Jo-Anne Endicott, Ann Fraser, Heather Macrae, Suzanne Neumann, Carolyn Rappel, Leigh Rowles, Lucyna Sevitsky, Janet Vernon, Ronald Bekker, Frances Croese, Gary Heil, Graeme Hudson, Graeme Murphy, Paul Saliba
Scenery / Costumes
Hugh Laing
ABT Ballet Revival
1969 by Elphine Allen
(Benesh Notation)
Number of Dancers
Licensing Information
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 Ballet Synopsis excerpted with permission from
The Ballets of Antony Tudor by Judith Chazin-Bennahum.



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