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Hobson's Choice

There are no performances listed for Hobson's Choice

What do you get if you mix a story of boots, booze, love and laughter with an award-winning choreographer? Hobson's Choice!

Meet Henry Hobson, boot-maker. If he could focus enough to peer through the alcoholic haze, he would see that he had three beautiful daughters, a talented assistant and a successful business. If he's not careful though, he'll lose the lot. He drinks his profits and refuses to let his daughters marry.

Meet Maggie, Henry's eldest daughter. A fierce woman, long unmarried, and thought to be unmarryable. Through sheer stubbornness, determination and the occasional choice word, she keeps her father and his business sailing in the right direction. Her heart is as hard as her tongue is sharp, but perhaps there is one man who can bring about a most out-of-character change...

Meet Will Mossop, Henry's talented boot-hand. He is the unacknowledged success behind Hobson's business and a man for whom the phase 'wouldn't say boo to a goose' was surely invented! One night after work, he creeps out from his basement workroom to try on some of the wonderful shoes he has made. Everything is going swimmingly before Maggie singlehandedly turns the wide-eyed cobbler's world upside down.

When Hobson's Choice was premiered in 1989 at the Royal Opera House, David Bintley's earthy comedy received a standing ovation the likes of which hadn't been seen since the premiere of Frederick Ashton's La Fille mal gardée in 1960. With one of those scores you can't help but whistle by Paul Reade, composer of The Antiques Roadshow and The Flumps, the ballet has remained hugely popular ever since.

Without doubt a classic of our time, don't miss your chance to join the eccentric Maggie as she puts the world to rights, bags herself the perfect man and starts up her own business to boot.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Sunday Express

'What a fabulous way to spend an evening... a dose of Hobson's will light up your life no end'
Sunday Express

'A family-friendly comic ballet, a happy story sweetly told'
Evening Standard

'Deservedly popular'
The Sunday Telegraph

'A real treat and perfect escapism, which left a smile on everyone's face'
Birmingham Post

'David Bintley's ballet version of Harold Brighouse's play has almost as much popular appeal as Swan Lake'
The Guardian

Original play by Harold Brighouse. This adapted version is presented by special permission of Samuel French Ltd on behalf of the Harold Brighouse Estate.

Birmingham Hobson's Choice and Spring Passions leaflet

Performance length

Approx 2 hours and 24 minutes



click here for a child friendly story guide.
(you will need Adobe Acrobat to view the printable story guide. If you do not have this installed please click here)


Click here for available Hobson's Choice reviews.

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Music Paul Reade
Choreography David Bintley
Design Hayden Griffin
Lighting John B. Read

World premiere

Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet, 13 February 1989, Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
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