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This just in -- a press release about the Eifman company's visit to D.C.'s Warner Theatre. Scroll down for casting! A rare treat (thank you, press release people!)




WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 14, 2003) Ardani Artists will present the

electrifying Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg for two performances only of Tchaikovsky—The Mystery of Life and Death at the Warner Theatre. Curtain is at 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 26 and at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 27.

Tickets, priced $36.50 to $56.50, are on sale now and available at the Warner Theatre box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, or online at www.ticketmaster.com. To charge by phone, call 202-432-SEAT, 301-808-6900, or 703-573-SEAT. For more information, call 800-669-STAGE.

Hailed by critics as Russia’s most innovative contemporary dance company, Eifman Ballet was founded in Russia in 1977 by Boris Eifman and revolutionized classical dance by taking the art of ballet to its highest level of expressiveness. Eifman created a new type of dance artist—the dancer/actor—who uses the foundation of classical ballet training as a launching pad for innovative, modern choreography. The theater’s style fuses

avant-garde dance with the methods of 20th century dramatic theater and film, and creates a rich and multi-dimensional theater experience.

Shortly after its formation, Eifman Ballet began touring Russia, performing to sold-out houses of audiences hungry for original, artistic expression. In spite of pressure for Eifman to leave the country for not making “Soviet art,” the company stayed in St. Petersburg and continued to perform to tremendous popular acclaim.

During the first 10 years of its existence, Eifman Ballet was unable to tour internationally for political reasons and became international in 1988 after its first performance abroad in Paris. Since that time, Eifman Ballet has toured throughout Western and Eastern Europe, Japan, South Korea, South A frica, Israel, and Latin America. In 1998, Eifman Ballet made its U.S.

debut in New York and electrified audiences with its vibrant, often shocking, and original style. Eifman Ballet began annual tours of the U.S. in 2000, and is currently one of three resident dance companies that performs at New York City Center.

Eifman, who has been noted by The New York Times as today’s “most successful Russian choreographer,” is a major figure in modern ballet. He has received numerous awards in Russia and internationally for his choreography and lifetime achievement in the art of dance. In 1970, he became the official

choreographer for the Vaganova Academy, the official school of the Kirov Ballet, and in 1975 he choreographed Firebird for the Kirov. Since forming Eifman Ballet, he has created a series of full-length productions including Tchaikovsky, which premiered in 1993.

Eifman Ballet’s Washington debut will feature Tchaikovsky—The Mystery of Life and Death, Eifman’s radical look at the mystery of the life and death of the great Russian composer. In Tchaikovsky, Eifman explores the composer’s tormented spirit and his sexuality—its origins and manifestations, and their profound effect on his life. Eifman’s company of more than 45 dancers—who are drawn to the company’s modern ballet repertoire—will perform.

Music for the ballet is by Peter Tchaikovsky with story and choreography by Boris Eifman. Set and costumes are by Viacheslav Okunev.


Tchaikovsky - Albert Galichanin (April 26); Yuri Smekalov (April 27)

Tchaikovsky’s Double - Alexey Turko (April 26); Konstantin Matulevsky (April 27)

Nadezhda von Meck - Vera Arbuzova (April 26); Maria Abashova (April 27)

Antonina Milyukova, Tchaikovsky’s wife - Nina Zmevets (April 26); Natalia Povorozniuk (April 27)

Youth, Prince, Joker Igor Siadzko (April 26); Sergei Zimin (April 27)

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I cannot WAIT to hear reactions to this!!!!!

(I also cannnot bring myself to go again....:) )

But, please, everyone tell us what you thought--this is one choreographer and company who provoke very mixed reactions, and it's always interesting to hear what everyone thinks--

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I wasn't going to reply, Juliet, but here goes.

I saw his latest (?) work "Who's Who" on Saturday. It got a pretty good review from Anna Kisselgoff and I can't imagine why......"the most successful Russian choreographer" indeed! What else is out there?--What is his competition? The humor was very heavy handed and I found it boring and third rate. A real mish-mash of styles, and an overly sentimental PDD to Rachmanimnoff (shades of 'Spartacus'!) His loyal following in New York appears to be the Russian Emigree community from Brighton Beach in Brooklyn (often called Odessa By The Sea). I must admit this is the first time I saw the Company, but I shouldn't complain too loudly---I had special tickets for $10.

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Oh, but this is **Tchaikovsky** and I cannot imagine anything more entertainiing than this....it was Truly Something. I'll be really intrigued to see what Washington audiences will say about it......

I'm not unhappy that I am missing Who's Who.....I'll see Who Cares? or watch Astaire if I feel a sudden urge to put on my sparkly shoes and twirl a little....

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How diplomatic you are, Leigh...;)

I think it does not make a bit of difference which cast you see (and who knows if those advertised are those performing?) It is definitely entertaining. Perhaps not in the way he intended...I think it is well worth a trip to see it....a great many people will love it, and we'd like to hear those reactions, as well....

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I've been nervous about posting this, but encouraged by Leigh's "love it or loathe it," I will now report that I saw the Eifman Ballet for the first time last week. I don't know about his other things, but I absolutely loved "Who's Who." And I loved the score -- Duke Ellington, Louis Prima, Stan Kenton (Stan was the man back in the 40s and 50s as far as I was concerned), Samuel Barber, Rachmininov, et al. And it all worked, IMO, including al.

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I just got an email from the Eifman PR person noting two unannounced cast changes from last night, as well as the casting for today:

There were a couple of cast changes last night due to injuries: Natalia Povorozniuk played the role of Antonina Milyukova, and Sergei Zimin played the role of Youth/Prince/Joker.

There are some additional cast changes for today's performance, in case you are interested:

Tchaikovsky Albert Galichanin

Tchaikovsky’s Double Alexey Turko

Nadezhda von Meck Maria Abashova

Antonina Milyukova Nina Zmievets

Youth, Prince, Joker Sergei Zimin

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