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Bolshoi 2020/2021 Season


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Here’s a description of some of the new works to be presented at the Bolshoi from a Google translation of an article in Kommersant.

 

But three one-act ballets, the premiere of which was scheduled for March 26 this year, will still be shown in the opening season (December 18). "Dancemania" to the music of Yuri Krasavin is staged by the Yekaterinburg ballet artistic director Vyacheslav Samodurov, "The Seasons" to the music of Glazunov - by the premiere of the Bolshoi Artemy Belyakov, and the ballet "Made in Bolshoi" - by Anton Pimonov. Everything was as planned, only Anton Pimonov during this time became the artistic director of the ballet troupe at the Perm Opera and Ballet Theater.

The general ballet audience will not be left without their main consolation - large and expensive plot performances with literary provenance. The Bolshoi invited the German choreographer Christian Spuck, whose Anna Karenina is at the Stanislavsky Musical Theater. On the New Stage, Špuk will stage the Orlando ballet (premiered on March 24) to music by Dvořák and Max Richter, apparently following his eminent colleague Marco Goecke, who released his Orlando ten years ago, based on the novel of the same name by Virginia Wolfe.

On the historical stage, the season will be closed by the new ballet "The Seagull" (premiere on July 1).

Choreographer Yuri Possokhov is faithful to his style - to make performances in a duet with a director who is responsible for the general drama.

This manner, not so much new as more or less forgotten old (in Soviet practice of the middle of the last century, this was enough), led Posokhov himself to two joint works with Kirill Serebrennikov - "A Hero of Our Time" and "Nureyev".

In The Seagull, the director will be completely different - the young Alexander Molochnikov from the Moscow Art Theater, who staged one-act operas by Gian Carlo Menotti on the Bolshoi Chamber Stage last year. But the composer is still the same: as in the case of A Hero of Our Time and Nureyev, the score of the new ballet was written by Ilya Demutsky. Thus, he confirmed his devotion to the path of a ballet composer, which is ultra-rare at the present time, and the Bolshoi confirmed his devotion to the late Soviet tradition: forty years ago the theater already hosted the ballet The Seagull, written by Rodion Shchedrin for Maya Plisetskaya.

https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4448755

(Thanks to I.N.A. at Balletfriends)

 

And from MK in russian (Google translation)

Also, until recently, rumors were heard from the theater about some mysterious premiere of one-act ballets being rehearsed by the artists. As they said, it was supposed to take place at the beginning of September. The rumors have not yet been confirmed. Indeed, four foreign choreographers have now arrived at the theater and the artists are rehearsing something, but they have not officially announced it. Perhaps it will be something beyond the plan at another time.

Noteworthy is the fact that the mystical ballet “The Master and Margarita” based on the novel by Mikhail Bulgakov staged by the Slovenian choreographer Edward Klug (the premiere was scheduled for the end of May) will not take place this season. Apparently, they decided to postpone it to the next season. This is not the first time this happens with Bulgakov's creation at the Bolshoi: the genius of the Russian ballet - Yuri Grigorovich - once also could not create his own ballet on this subject for the Bolshoi. And now the situation repeats itself.

And the official plans of the theater are as follows. The Bolshoi plans to present three ballet and seven opera premieres in the 245th season, hold festivals, concerts at the Philharmonic, and go on tour in Europe and South America (Argentina); host the Yuri Grigorovich International Ballet Competition on their stages.

https://www.mk.ru/culture/2020/08/07/bolshoy-teatr-obyavil-premery-i-novuyu-skhemu-rassadki-zriteley.html

(Thanks again to I.N.A. at Balletfriends)

 

There's no implied or mentioned north American tour anywhere yet, which many of us are hoping for. For me, especially, Swan Lake in Chicago.

 

 

Edited by Buddy
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The Bolshoi will begin its new season tomorrow with an evening of four new works, "Four Characters in Search of A Plot". During the closing I've read posts stating that dancers were working on small scale performances with some 'Western' choreographers. This would be the result.

https://www.bolshoi.ru/en/performances/99768/

Here's the casting.

https://www.bolshoi.ru/en/performances/99768/roles/#20200910190000

One of these works, "Just", is by former Paris Opera Ballet Premier Danseur, Simon Valastro. Olga Smirnova will be the lead in two of its three performances.

In an interview he gives us several insights into the production constraints imposed by current conditions. 

Simon Valastro: I received a call from Makhar Vaziev [Bolshoi ballet director, editor's note] and he suggested a specific format - a 15-minute ballet for several dancers.

We were only limited by the duration of the ballet and the number of people. Otherwise, we were given carte blanche. The artists are entirely my choice. I already have two groups and will have a third. Five dancers for each.

Our limits are organisational, like the distance between people.

[Also, a general description]

I had long had the idea of directing a show to the music of David Lang, Just. The latter was inspired by the Song of Songs, and I in turn was inspired and fascinated by this music. And I thought it was the best time for the idea to materialize.

(Once again, thanks to Sophia at Dansomanie for all this information)

The article in french.
https://fr.rbth.com/art/85329-simon-valastro-bolchoi-theatre-just-ballet

Google translate
https://translate.google.com

Added comment:

Having just looked at the casting more carefully, the first work, The Nineth Wave, is certainly not a small scale production. It has forty dancers.

I do wish the Bolshoi as much success as possible.

Edited by Buddy
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12 hours ago, Buddy said:

One of these works, "Just", is by former Paris Opera Ballet Premier Danseur, Simon Valastro. Olga Smirnova will be the lead in two of its three performances.

 

 

Just to be precise, Simone Valastro was not  Premier Danseur but Sujet

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This is a very brief video news clip showing Svetlana Zakharova (starting at 0:50) in ‘Don Quixote,” one of the Bolshoi’s first performances since the reopening. Denis Rodkin was her partner.

https://tvkultura.ru/article/show/article_id/368027/

(Thanks to Natalia at Ballet Friends)

Not intended to be flippant, but have you noticed a lack of ballet reviews lately ?

Okay, wait no longer.  😊

Someone posted a video clip (unofficial) of half the performance of “The Ninth Wave,” one of the short, new works presented at the beginning of the reopening. It features Margarita Shrainer and David Motta Soares.

It’s an abstract work. For the most part I thought that it was rather nicely done.

 

 

Edited by Buddy
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Not unrelated. Anna Netrebko is in hospital with Covid-19 after singing in the Bolshoi's production of Don Carlo last week. It was the theater's first production of the season. The performance on September 10th was cancelled after Ildar Abdrazakov became ill. He subsequently tested positive. Netrebko was tested then, but at the time her test came back negative.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/17/arts/music/anna-netrebko-coronavirus-bolshoi.html 

Edited by volcanohunter
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6 hours ago, volcanohunter said:

Not unrelated. Anna Netrebko is in hospital with Covid-19 after singing in the Bolshoi's production of Don Carlo last week. It was the theater's first production of the season. The performance on September 10th was cancelled after Ildar Abrazakov became ill. He subsequently tested positive. Netrebko was tested then, but at the time her test came back negative.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/17/arts/music/anna-netrebko-coronavirus-bolshoi.html 

I shuddered reading this....

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The season has barely begun and already the theater is being forced to improvise in less-than-ideal conditions. Yesterday on her social media Kristina Kretova announced that in the interests of safety, she was withdrawn from a performance today and sent into self-isolation. So, presumably, was Denis Rodkin with whom she'd been rehearsing. As a result, Olga Smirnova and Ruslan Skvortsov, who danced Onegin yesterday evening, were forced to dance it again today at noon, which is madness in the case of this ballet. I think it would have been more responsible to cancel the performance.

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4 hours ago, volcanohunter said:

The season has barely begun and already the theater is being forced to improvise in less-than-ideal conditions. Yesterday on her social media Kristina Kretova announced that in the interests of safety, she was withdrawn from a performance today and sent into self-isolation. So, presumably, was Denis Rodkin with whom she'd been rehearsing. As a result, Olga Smirnova and Ruslan Skvortsov, who danced Onegin yesterday evening, were forced to dance it again today at noon, which is madness in the case of this ballet. I think it would have been more responsible to cancel the performance.

Wow! or, rather, once again.... shudder ....

 

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A new video.

"The program is dedicated to the return of the Bolshoi Theater artists to their usual life. You will see how the first rehearsals went, the first meetings with choreographers, teachers and colleagues. What are the artists waiting for and what are they preparing for in the new season? What difficulties do you face after such a long vacation, and what comes easy? Grandiose plans for the year ahead. And no less grandiose opening of the season with the opera Don Carlos by G. Verdi."

(Thanks to Sophia at Dansomanie)


 

Edited by Buddy
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The film conveniently neglects to describe how the opening production of Don Carlo (not "Carlos," Bolshoi; you do the four-act Italian version) went very wrong. I get that "Bilet v Bol'shoi" is a promotional program and not journalism, but this is more than a whitewash, it's actually irresponsible.

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On 9/25/2020 at 11:34 AM, Buddy said:

A new video.

"The program is dedicated to the return of the Bolshoi Theater artists to their usual life. You will see how the first rehearsals went, the first meetings with choreographers, teachers and colleagues. What are the artists waiting for and what are they preparing for in the new season? What difficulties do you face after such a long vacation, and what comes easy? Grandiose plans for the year ahead. And no less grandiose opening of the season with the opera Don Carlos by G. Verdi."

(Thanks to Sophia at Dansomanie)


 

Curious, Lantratov was the coach in the video. Do senior principals normally work as coaches as well as dancers? 

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According to Ruslan Skvortsov's Facebook page, he is now "ex" premiere of Bolshoi status.   I so Hope that he will continue to dance as he is one of my favorite male principals with the Bolshoi.  He is an amazing parter, too!

Quote
30.092020 Finally, this day has come and it means that from tomorrow I get the unspoken status of ′′ EX ′′ premier of the Bolshoi Theater of the Russian Federation. And so now I want to thank my dear theater, which for 22 years became my second home, who took most of my life. Thanks to you, I was lucky enough to learn from legendary teachers who put their knowledge and wisdom into me. Working with outstanding ballerinas / partners, thanks to which my every step on stage was unique and unforgettable, thank you, my dear for this experience! Thank you for giving me the pleasure of working with my colleagues (without glass in ballets and finals on the bandage 😅) with respect to each of you! Thank you for allowing us to visit many corners of our planet, work in different theaters and make many friends! Thank you for staying until this day with my joints and bundles and especially with my opinion and outlook on life 😂! Many thanks to all the leaders (there were many of you 🤔) who ′′ tempered ′′ my character! Thank you to our dressers and costumes who, once in a while, contributed to the magic of reincarnation! Thanks to our concertmasters for their patience and professionalism! To our amazing conductors and orchestra!
Now with a calm conscience, I pass the relay....!!!))))) I wish him / her good luck!!!
AND AGAIN THANK YOU SO MUCH THEATER!
Low bow!

 

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In comments on Instagram, Skvortsov makes clear will remain with the company, as have a number of other dancers "under contract" such as Nina Kaptsova and Alexander Volchkov, who continue to be cast. He's not retiring yet, but his most recent contract has expired, and at 40 he is officially past retirement age.

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Andrey Merkuriev, also working under contract (former Leading Soloist and also danced at Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky) will be the Chief Choreographer (Artistic Director) at Komi Opera and Ballet Theater, where he started his career. The current AD is Marianna Ryzhkina former Principal of Bolshoi.  

http://ourreg.ru/2020/10/01/glavnym-baletmejsterom-teatra-opery-i-baleta-komi-stanet-andrej-merkurev/?fbclid=IwAR32GolUghvYoLAjGz0kV-Fz6TtCWrd8a5bGhtH5F-_GtmMiXQhKoYSeaaQ

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As young dancers, he danced with Alexandrova on tour in Seattle in an unfortunate Romeo and Juliet production, but I really liked both of them, and I'm happy for him.

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WOW!  That is fantastic news!  Congratulations to Denis Savin!  It fills me with joy that Bolshoi promotes dancers regardless of their age as he has been with the company sine 2002.   Very well deserved!

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Helene said:

 

Sorry, Helene. Brilliant quote !  😊  but not the one that I meant to post.  

 

Edited by Buddy
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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, ECat said:

WOW!  That is fantastic news!  Congratulations to Denis Savin!  It fills me with joy that Bolshoi promotes dancers regardless of their age as he has been with the company sine 2002.   Very well deserved!

Sergei Filin did something similar, I believe, when he came in, ECat. Yekaterina Shipulina, maybe Maria Allash and perhaps another who had been around for awhile were made Principals. I somehow felt that his having danced during their earlier years may have had something to do with it, but that’s just a guess. Nina Kaptsova was also later made Principal. (Alexei Ratmansky before him, ‘youthened’ the company a lot.) Congratulations to Denis Savin.

On the other hand this does not seem to happen at the Mariinsky and I sometimes wish that it would -- for instance Yekaterina Osmolkina (because I once told her that she should be, for one reason  😊)

Edited by Buddy
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