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I was watching a Russian video of Romeo and Juliet with Natalia Bessmertnova and Mikhail Lavrovsky yesterday and was disappointed that there is no cast list on the box nor any credits of any kind on the actual video. The video was made in the early 70's and the quality isn't that sharp so I had great difficulty identifying the other soloists.

I think Mercutio was Mikhail Tsivin and Tybalt may have been one of the Simachev brothers, possibly Anatoli ( difficult to identify in that wig), but I couldn't figure out who the troubadour was at all, though his partner looked a bit like Golikova.

Can someone with a better knowledge of the company at that time or a better copy of the video help me out over who danced what?

Thanks in advance


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here is what my cassette cover says, though i'm not sure this is the same recording you mention above:

Juliet - Natalia Bessmertnova

Romeo - Mikhail Lavrovsky

Mercutio - Yuri Papko

Tybalt - Vladimir Levashov

Paris - Vladimir Romanenko

Benvolio - Alexei Zaklinsky

Lord Capulet - Vladimir Golubin

Lady Capulet - Irina Krasvina

this is from a kultur released cassette in 1975, 108 min.

[for some odd reason the same label, with 1975 dating in two different places, claims the performance was 'captured in 1976' which is neat work, released in '75, filmed in '76.]

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Many thanks for the prompt reply. The clincher as to whether we have the same video is this: does your copy also include Beryl Grey going on stage at the curtain calls and curtseying to Bessmertnova? If it does we have the same copy.

I didn't begin watching the Bolshoi until 1974; so many of the faces of dancers below principal level are unfamiliar to me.

I notice the troubadour and his lady weren't listed on your box, so if any one more sharp-eyed than myself can recognize this couple, I'd be very grateful for some names.

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Kultur has this R&J (or another with Bessmertnova/Lavrovsky) on DVD in a triple DVD set called "Trilogy of Ballet - a Bolshoi Collection" with a Bessmertnova "Giselle" and Maximova/Pavlova "Nutcracker".

The oddity is that the scene where Juliet teases her Nurse with a pillow (or is a ball or doll in Lavrovsky's choreography?) and runs about until Lady Capulet tells her she must get married is cut. Juliet makes her first appearance very grown-up and ladylike at the Capulet's ball. Did Bessmertnova cut this scene always? I have seen video of Maximova doing it and of course Ulanova performed it even in late middle age.

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