Welcome to Seattle Center
Don’t miss the PNB Premiere of Bruce Wells’ Beauty and the Beast, an enchanting tale of adventure, unlikely friendships, and the power of true love. Find the beauty within this hour-long narrated production designed for younger audience members and performed by Pacific Northwest Ballet School students.
Long ago, a handsome young prince lived in a magnificent castle. Though he enjoyed a life of riches, he was rude and unkind to his subjects. One fateful day, an old beggar woman approached him. Because his heart was cold, the selfish Prince turned the poor woman away. To the Prince’s surprise, the woman then transformed into a beautiful enchantress. She put a curse on the Prince for his ugly behavior, turning him into an equally ugly beast. The Enchantress’ curse could only be broken by one thing—a true love’s kiss.
Now, in a nearby village, there is a beautiful young girl named Belle who lives with her father, a merchant in town. A vain and selfish huntsman named Gaston often visits this small village, always followed by adoring women. However, Gaston only has eyes for Belle. He attempts to woo Belle, but she has no interest in him. As Belle’s father prepares to leave the small village for the markets of the big city, Belle requests that he bring her back a rose, and they bid each other farewell.
Along the way, Belle’s father loses the path to the city but remembers his daughter’s wish for a rose. He stops to pluck a single rose from a garden just outside a weathered castle when the Prince, now the Beast, confronts him. Belle’s father begs for his life, pleading that he must return to his daughter. The Beast then negotiates the merchant’s release in exchange for his daughter. “It must be your daughter’s decision,” demands the Beast, who gives the old man a chest of gold before sending him on his way.
The merchant returns to the village. There he tells the story of his encounter with the Beast. Everyone is horrified except for Belle, who is determined to save her father. With a heavy heart, the Merchant returns to the rose garden with Belle.
They meet the Beast, and Belle agrees to stay in her father’s place. The Beast gives two bags of gold to the merchant before he takes his leave. The Beast then commands his court to prepare for the evening’s ball. First, they must decide upon a beautiful gown for Belle. When the Beast returns, Belle hesitantly accepts a dance with him. Embarrassed by his appearance, the Beast calls for a performance for Belle and disappears.