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Wayne Sleep and prima ballerina Monica Loughman work with a troupe of plus-size amateur dancers to realise their dream of dancing Swan Lake

About the Show

Wayne Sleep and prima ballerina Monica Loughman work with a troupe of plus-size amateur dancers to realise their dream of dancing Swan Lake

  • Episode 3

    The Big Ballet dancers have just five weeks to perfect their own 25-minute version of Swan Lake. But this is not a full-time ballet troupe. Classes on evenings and weekends must fit around work and home lives.

    The pressure on the dancers begins to mount, as the physicality of the task ahead and the enormity of what they have taken on begin to take their toll.

    Monica and Wayne feel the pressure too; as well as getting the dancers ballet-ready, they have to design a performance of Swan Lake that will confound the critics. The set, the costumes and the music all have to be spectacular.

    Wayne and Monica have drilled the dancers in basic ballet technique and cast all the roles. After months of training, injury setbacks and nerves, with less than five weeks to go before the dancers perform their supersize Swan Lake in front of an audience of 1500, including the great and the good of the ballet establishment, can they realise their dream of dancing on stage?

  • Episode 2

    Wayne and Monica audition the dancers for the parts in Swan Lake, and the pressure is on to see who is cast as the lead White Swan and her evil counterpart the Black Swan.

    Having whittled down hundreds of auditionees to form their unique ballet company, Wayne and Monica - and the dancers - realise the size of the task ahead of them.

    Monica is a stickler for pure ballet discipline and training. She's set on turning the amateurs into an impressive dance troupe, but with just five months until the curtain goes up, the pressure is on.

  • Episode 1

    Over 200 auditionees are whittled down to 18 men and women, to form the Big Ballet troupe. Can Wayne and Monica harness the dancers' passion, teach classical ballet and put on a performance the likes of which no one has ever seen before?

  • Big Ballet Performance - 4oD Exclusive

    The final performance of Big Ballet's Swan Lake, performed on 16 October 2013 at Bradford Town Hall.

Big Ballet synopsis

Wayne Sleep and prima ballerina Monica Loughman work with a troupe of plus-size amateur dancers to realise their dream of dancing Swan Lake

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4 Episodes