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I have seen this ballet many times and with original casts; Vasiliev, Maximova, Timofeeva and the great Marius Liepa.

Hello Richka,

If you have time could you write more about how you react to this ballet? What you think of the choreography... Grigorovich as a choreographer... Memories of seeing the original casts...

Of course, I will be glad to. I saw Sparticus with this original cast first, and I am going way back now, in 1976 at the Met. The Bolshoi came, both opera and ballet, for two months to help us celebrate 200th anniversary of American Revolution. First month was the Ballet. I booked Box 14 for every performance. Same for the 2nd month of Opera, but you want to hear about the ballet. They danced Spartacus many times, always with the same cast except V. Gordeyev danced the role a few times. As I am Russian speaking, I met many of the dancers. I showed Gordeyev around Manhattan and helped him buy sound equipment. Later Grigorovitch joined us as he wanted to buy a video recorder. So I took them to a video store I know. I can tell you I really struggled with my Russian language trying to explain technical things.

Anyway, they company left for Moscow, loaded with all kinds of recorders and sound equipment. Gordeyev later sent me a video of he and N. Pavlova in Giselle rehearsal from the Bolshoi stage.

OK, the Soviet Gov't had a center in the U.N. Building that they called a 'book club'. I often went there to see their films, always followed by a mad rush upstairs to a U.N lounge where they had free vodka and zakuski (snaks). Several years later they showed the film of Spartacus with original cast in the U.N. movie theater. I sat beside the Soviet Ambassador in the front row!

Now, First, briefly, here is my opinion of this ballet. Spartacus is one of, if not the most loved ballet I know. The Khataturian music is magnificent. Every time I saw it back in 1976 was like new. Griegorovitch in my opinion is the greatest living choreographer. Next is Ashton. I later saw it in Moscow with Mukamedov who danced it powerfully but not the same as Vasiliev. The film is magnificent. It surely is available. Have you tried Amazon?

Hope this is enough for now. Richka


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