THE Vienna Festival Ballet returns to Clacton with an enchanting new production of Sleeping Beauty.

Based on the traditional children's fairytale and set to Tchaikovsky’s magnificent score, the show features stunning choreography and beautiful custumes.

The wicked Carbosse casts a spell on Princess Aurora proclaiming that she will one day prick her finger - and die.

The Lilac Fairy changes the spell so that on that fateful day the Princess and the entire palace fall into a deep sleep.

A century later Prince Florimund revives the Princess with a kiss, the palace awakes and a parade of fairytale characters attend the wedding.

The Vienna Festival Ballet was founded in 1980 by Austrian dancer Peter Mallek.

He trained as a dancer in his native city of Vienna, joined the corps de ballet of the Vienna State Opera, aged just 14.

Early success in Europe catapulted him on to the international scene and since then he has danced with all the world's major companies.

One of the many highlights of Peter’s career was when he was invited to join the American Classical Ballet, alternating with Rudolf Nureyev, partnering Eva Evdokimova, Lilliana Cosi and Merle Park.

After a dazzling career in the international spotlight, Peter founded his own company in 1980, the Vienna Festival Ballet, named after his home city.

The average age of the dancers is just 20 years old, giving vitality, energy and freshness to the classical ballets.

Sleeping Beauty is at the Princes Theatre tonight at 7.30pm. Tickets are £23 (£21.50 concessions, £16 children) from the box office on 01255 686633.