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New production of "Esmeralda" for the BolshoiYuri Burlaka in -Dancing Times- interview


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#16 leonid17

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Posted 27 December 2009 - 03:42 PM

I think this would be a huge success on tour. . .hope some impresario thinks the same.



I think it would be a success in London but unfortunately it is not one of the productions they are bringing next July/Aug.

#17 Amy Reusch

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Posted 27 December 2009 - 09:29 PM

Marc Haegeman has shared some beautiful photos of it on his "for ballet lovers only" site
http://www.for-balle...eralda2009.html

In the video clip, the little goat didn't look too willing... I wonder if it was more willing in later performances? I always think of Kschessinka when I see the goat...

#18 leonid17

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Posted 29 December 2009 - 05:21 AM

Translated review from Vedomosti

http://www.vedomosti...09/12/28/222330

Edited to remove erroneous information.

#19 innopac

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Posted 06 January 2010 - 11:54 AM

A short clip with English subtitles.

#20 leonid17

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 04:46 AM

A short clip with English subtitles.


I am grateful for your post innopac as the clip and the interviews reveal a more of the the production and Burlaka's approach to the reconstruction. I was particularly attracted to the realisation of the costumes in the character dancing which closely follow the original Vsevolozhsky designs and given the way they move seem not to be made from modern fabrics.

I am however puzzled by the accompanying text, " They presented a revival of an unorthodox version of the 19th-century classic "Esmeralda" created 59 years ago by Vladimir Burmeister, who was the theatre's ballet master for some three decades after his appointment in 1941."

I think this is the result of a gap in the text and an error in translation as the Bolshoi web site states, "Archive research and coordination - Sergei Konyaev.
Scenography based on sketches by Orest Allegri, Ivan Andreyev, Pavel Isakov, Antonio Fornari, Vasily Shirayev
Ivan Vsevolozhsky's costume sketches used in the production
Sketches of sets and costumes made available by the St.Petersburg State Museum of Theatre and Music and the St.Petersburg State Theatre Library
Use is made of music by Riccardo Drigo, Anton Simon, Pyotr Shenk and of the Reinhold Gliere orchestration
Separate fragments of the choreography are reconstructed on the basis of materials in the possession of The Harvard Theatre Collection
Music dramaturgy conception - Yuri Burlaka. The original Cesar Pugni score has been restored by Alexander Troitsky on the basis of archive materials in the possession of La Biblioteca del Conservatorio San Pietro a Majella -Napoli and the Bolshoi Theatre Music Library
Choreography of Pas de Diane - Agrippina Vaganova after Marius Petipa motifs.

#21 ina

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 02:21 PM

Sorry, but it seems to me there is some misunderstanding with the new Bolshoi “Esmeralda”. First of all Vikharev has nothing to do with it – the production is prepared by Yuri Burlaka in cooperation with Vasili Medvedev. I guess that Burlaka is responsive for the revival of the old choreography, while Medvedev created new dances instead the lost ones (or to fit the synopsis which looks as a combination of different versions). Since the premier was on the 25- th of December when most of Russian newspapers go on long holidays only a couple of critical reviews were published. The one in The Moscow Times is about entirely different “Esmeralda”, by Burmeister, which was also brought back to life this season , but in the Stanislavsky Theatre, where it was “born” more than 50 years ago. It’s a really good ballet with strong dramaturgy and mostly original choreography.
The Bolshoi “Esmeralda” seems to me to be sort of excessive in dances ,stylistically not fit for an "old" ballet. Many details of the first performances (in Russian) together with photographs and TV-reports may be found here .

#22 leonid17

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Posted 07 January 2010 - 03:05 PM

Sorry, but it seems to me there is some misunderstanding with the new Bolshoi “Esmeralda”. First of all Vikharev has nothing to do with it – the production is prepared by Yuri Burlaka in cooperation with Vasili Medvedev. I guess that Burlaka is responsive for the revival of the old choreography, while Medvedev created new dances instead the lost ones (or to fit the synopsis which looks as a combination of different versions). Since the premier was on the 25- th of December when most of Russian newspapers go on long holidays only a couple of critical reviews were published. The one in The Moscow Times is about entirely different “Esmeralda”, by Burmeister, which was also brought back to life this season , but in the Stanislavsky Theatre, where it was “born” more than 50 years ago. It’s a really good ballet with strong dramaturgy and mostly original choreography.
The Bolshoi “Esmeralda” seems to me to be sort of excessive in dances ,stylistically not fit for an "old" ballet. Many details of the first performances (in Russian) together with photographs and TV-reports may be found here .


Ina you are quite right about the review which I did not have the time to read and I posted I assuming because of the date it was a review of the Bolshoi production.

Vikharev's name had been mentioned earlier and as he had worked on the Harvard Theatre Museum Collection in the revival of Imperial Ballets. Regarding the Bolshoi production, it was of course Sergei Konyaev who was responsible for the archive research and coordination and historic materials were used from the Harvard Theatre Museum Collection. The post preceding your post gives full information on those involved in the recreation of the Bolshoi production.

#23 innopac

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Posted 11 January 2010 - 11:34 AM

Bolshoi's 'Esmeralda' Production Fails to Inspire
Moscow Times review of 11 Jan.

The new “Esmeralda” will undoubtedly give much pleasure to those content with mere spectacle or who wish to see the Bolshoi become a sort of dance museum. But I can imagine that Petipa himself would not be among those welcoming the addition of yet another reconstruction of his works to the theater’s repertoire. Instead of repeated attempts to conjure up, in wholesale fashion, a form of ballet intended for dancers with physical characteristics and audiences with an aesthetic perception quite different from those of today, my guess is that Petipa, a great innovator in his own time, would have much preferred to see his legacy used to inspire new works that move dance forward into territory that still remains unexplored.



#24 Helene

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Posted 28 January 2010 - 08:13 AM

Thanks to the "For Ballet Lovers Only" Facebook page, I found the links to the following two-part mini-doc on "Esmeralda":

Part 1
Part 2

The last 15 seconds or so of Part 1 shows Maria Allash, whom I haven't seen since the internet TV broadcast of "Raymonda" a few years ago.

The dance excerpts are much more extensive than those restricted by US union contracts, including large parts of variations by Ivan Vasiliev and Maria Alexandrova. There's a lot of beautiful dancing by Alexandrova, so these are a little piece of heaven for me. Thanks to hookham for posting them.

#25 Marc Haegeman

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 07:29 AM

For the UK readers or those having a subscription to The Dancing Times, I have a review of the new Bolshoi "La Esmeralda" in the February issue.

#26 Drew

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Posted 01 February 2010 - 09:39 AM

Unfortunately I have not been able to read Marc Haegeman's review. I have seen the wonderful clips Helene posted and although I have no idea how this ballet works in the theater, I feel certain that if Sol Hurok were alive this would already be booked for New York and a U.S. tour ...

Classic ballet, Lavish scenery and Costumes, melodramatic story, star dancers (even alternating star ballerinas!), and all based on a novel by the author who inspired Les Miz: what can't be promoted here?

#27 paul

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Posted 20 May 2010 - 11:48 AM

During the "End of Season Gala 2009" at the Bolshoi a Esmeralda pas de deux was danced. It was a delight. I had never seen it before and it looked to me 100% Petipa. I waited for this pas deux to pop up in the new Bolshoi Petipa "Reconstruction" of the Ballet. But it never did. Does anyone know where this delightful Esmeralda, danced at the End of Season Gala 2009, comes from?

#28 EricHG31

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 01:50 AM

Apologies for bumping this thread, I wasn't sure whether I should post in here, or in the Ballet on Film forum, but my questions seemed better suited here...

I saw the cinema showing of the Bolshoi's Esmeralda, and with some reservations, really enjoyed it. This may be a question nobody can specifically answer, but... What I've not been able to find out (from the credits on the Bolshoi's website, the movie's credits and on screen introduction, and searching on this forum), is just how "authentic" is it to Petipa's late 1890s final revival (I believe it's from this revival that the notations come from)?

Specifically, if one was to call the Russian reconstructions from Vikharev as "most authentic" (even though I know authenticity is arguable) and the Lacoste ones as "least authentic", how close in terms of design, costumes, and of course choreography to the late 1890s Petipa is this production? Is it similar to Le Corsaire (which I look forward to seeing broadcast in cinemas in March)?

I know it's a complicated question, but any discussion or details would be greatly appreciated.

#29 Lidewij

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 02:22 AM

This was discussed (a little) in the interview with Yuri Burlaka and Vasily Medvedev during the intermission of the broadcast. Mr Medvedev said that in the grand pas with Fleur de Lys, he used the floor patterns of Petipa, but changed the steps. And he added a male corps to show the world what they could do (I don't recall what he exactly said, but this is the essention of what he said).
This was the example he used, I wonder what he has changed in other scenes..

I think Burlaka also said that all of Perrot's mime was shown in the production.

#30 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 14 October 2011 - 06:52 AM

Bolshoi's 'Esmeralda' Production Fails to Inspire
Moscow Times review of 11 Jan.

The new “Esmeralda” will undoubtedly give much pleasure to those content with mere spectacle or who wish to see the Bolshoi become a sort of dance museum. But I can imagine that Petipa himself would not be among those welcoming the addition of yet another reconstruction of his works to the theater’s repertoire. Instead of repeated attempts to conjure up, in wholesale fashion, a form of ballet intended for dancers with physical characteristics and audiences with an aesthetic perception quite different from those of today, my guess is that Petipa, a great innovator in his own time, would have much preferred to see his legacy used to inspire new works that move dance forward into territory that still remains unexplored.


This is a very interesting thought, and one that has popped in my head too while reading about the reconstructions. I particularly enjoy the vintage feeling in many things in life-(from ballet restorations to fashion revivals to mid century thrift stores furniture buying, etc...)-but I wonder about the ahead of the times audiences that are basically made of our very ahead of the times societies...Is everyone on the same boat about enjoying this curious-(although beautiful)-specimens...?


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