Pillar of Fire (1942)


Gillian Murphy and Marcelo Gomez
New production 2003 - ABT
Photo: Courtesy of American Ballet Theater
Photo: Marty Sohl


Hagar, whose elder sister is a spinster, foresees the same fate for herself. When the man she unrequitedly loves seems to show preference for her younger sister, Hagar in distraction gives herself to one she does not love. The resulting crisis, however, unites her with the man she really loves. The ballet is set in the period around 1900 because it was then that Schoenberg composed the music.

Antony Tudor
Music / Composer
Arnold Schoenberg
Verklarte Nacht
First Performance
New York
Metropolitan Opera House
April 8, 1942
Ballet Theatre
Cast - First Performance
Nora Kaye, Hugh Laing, Annabelle Lyon, Antony Tudor, Lucia Chase, Maria Karnilova, Charles Dickson, Jan Davidson, John Kriza, Virginia Wilcox, Wallace Seibert, Jean Hunt, Barbara Fallis, Sono Osato, Rosella Hightower, Muriel Bentley, Jerome Robbins, Donald Saddler, Frank Hobi, Balina Razoumova, Roszika Sabo
Costumes / Set / Lighting
Jo Mielziner
First Swedish Performance
Royal Opera House
December 30, 1962
Royal Swedish Ballet
Elphine Allen
(Benesh Notation) 1969
Agneta Stjernlof
(Benesh Notation) 1971
Airi Hynninen
(Labanotation) 1982
Number of Dancers
13 Women, 8 Men
Average Length
31 Minutes
ABT; Royal Swedish Ballet; Star Dancers (Japan)
ABT; Royal Swedish Ballet; Star Dancers (Japan)
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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