Swan Song goes backstage at National Ballet of Canada
The feature-length documentary Swan Song follows Karen Kain as she directs a multi-million dollar production of Swan Lake for National Ballet of Canada that premiered in 2022. Kain, who first danced the dual role of Odette/Odile in Swan Lake in 1971, directed the new production as the capstone of a 50-year career as a dancer and artistic director. Filmmakers Chelsea McMullan and Sean O’Neill had behind-the-scenes access during the ballet’s two-year creation process, resulting in an intimate look at rehearsals and the dancers’ lives, as well as the physical, mental, and emotional challenges of ballet. Scream star Neve Campbell, a former National Ballet School of Canada student, is an executive producer. The film premieres at the Toronto International Film Festival September 9 and will air as a four-part limited series on CBC Gem and CBC TV starting November 22.