Unquestionably one of the world’s great companies, and certainly the finest at preserving the classics, the Kirov Ballet arrives with two of the art form’s crown jewels. Next weekend is devoted to the perennial favorite, Swan Lake, but the opening gift is a rare chance to see Romeo and Juliet with the original 1940 choreography that Leonid Lavrovsky set to the rapturous Prokofiev score. For those familiar only with the Kenneth MacMillan and John Cranko iterations, here is the seminal version that started it all. Opening night is made even more special with an appearance by Diana Vishneva, one of the world’s reigning ballerinas, partnered by Andrian Fadeyev. The next night the doomed lovers are played by Irina Golub and Igor Kolb, then Fadeyev returns with Evguenya Obraztsova. Learn more at the free preperformance lectures one hour before each show. Orange County Performing Arts Center, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa; Romeo and Juliet: Tues.-Thurs., Oct. 17-19, 7:30 p.m.; Swan Lake: Fri., Oct. 20, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 21, 2 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Oct. 22, 2 p.m.; $25-$110. (714) 556-2787 or www.ocpac.org.

—Ann Haskins

LA Weekly