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Bolshoi 2022//2023 Season

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The new season began in the middle of the month. It opened with several Swan Lakes featuring :: Kovalyova (Lovely), Arina Denisova, whom I’m not familiar with, and Anna Nikulina (Lovely). There were also some more of Grigorovich’s Spartacus along with Ratmansky’s Romeo and Juliet and Balanchine’s Jewels. Grigorovich’s A Legend of Love will be performed next.

Of personal interest, Victoria Brilyeva, whom I always liked at the Mariinsky, is one of the eight background soloists in Diamonds. I continue to wish her much success at the Bolshoi. There isn’t a lot in the way of video, but one of Eleonora Sevenard (formerly Mariinsky) and Artem Ovcharenko in Diamonds was just posted. I followed her more until Alyona Kovalyova’s (Mariinsky school) remarkable grace pretty much eclipsed everything. Eleonora Sevenard does have a nice edge here that works well with Balanchine. Also the charming Anna Tikhomirova is cast as usual in the couples from Emeralds. From an old video she is lovely in this.

Ekaterina Shipulina (now “Working Under Contract”) is still hanging in there, Deflope, with one Mekhmene Banu and one Aegina.

May this season offer a ray of light in the world news landscape and a touch of warmth and beauty.


Correction:  Eleonora Sevenard graduated the Mariinsky school (the Vaganova) but then went directly to the Bolshoi as pointed out in Volcanohunter's following post.

Edited by Buddy
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I've removed all of the discussion that started from unofficial news via a fan post on sociall media.

If there is official news by an official source, ie, a ballet professional, the dicussion can be resurrected, and not by the original poster.


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I don't think Spicer's geopolitical explanation stands up to scrutiny. Denis Matsuev, who is closely aligned with the Kremlin (and is also Shipulina's husband), is scheduled to appear in Tashkent on October 19th.

The Moiseyev company has performances scheduled there on November 12 & 13, and the poster features the logo of the Russian ministry of culture.

There was a "scandal" the week before involving Polunin for a controversial and unsanctioned change to his program.
He posted a video stating that the presenters were threatening to sue him and demanded that the Russian ministry of foreign affairs "do something" about it, but I don't think Russia is going to downgrade diplomatic relations with Uzbekistan over Polunin. In any case, Uzbekistan has never been an especially close ally to Russia, having abandoned the Collective Security Treaty in 1999.

The tour could not have been a secret, since it was announced in mid-August. According to the second slide, the group should also have included Anna Nikulina, but there is no photo or video evidence that she participated.

Despite reports of a month-long "suspension," the Bolshoi principals who performed in Tashkent have not all had their performances canceled. In particular, the workloads of Stashkevich and Lopatin are as heavy as ever. On October 5 Chudin was replaced in Jewels, but Stashkevich and Lopatin were not.

On October 6 Obraztsova and Lantratov were replaced in "Emeralds."

On October 8, Shipulina and Lobukhin were replaced in Legend of Love (he immediately, she the day before the performance).

The following day Krysanova and Lantratov were replaced.

I'm not sure what the grounds would be for suspending Shipulina, since she's no longer a full-time employee of the Bolshoi, it no longer pays her a salary, and she is employed on a per-show basis, so unless she fails to fulfill the conditions of a specific show contract, I don't see how the Bolshoi can tell her how to spend her time. At worst she might have borrowed a costume without proper permission. Unless she's being punished as the tour's ringleader. (Some Russian reports claim that the tour was arranged and transportation paid for by Matsuev.)

Krysanova and Chudin have been replaced in Dancemania on October 12, but Stashkevich and Lopatin have not.

As of today, Krysanova and Lantratov have not been replaced in Made in Bolshoi on October 13
and Lantratov and Stashkevich have not been replaced in The Seasons.

As of today, Volchkov is still cast in the October 15 matinee of Onegin.

Chudin has been replaced in the evening performance, a change that was made a couple of days ago.

Skvortsov, Stashkevich and Lopatin are still cast on October 16, but Obraztsova has been replaced.

Krysanova and Chudin have been replaced in The Pharaoh’s Daughter on October 21, but Stashkevich has not.

Obraztsova has been replaced on October 23.

Yesterday casting for Anyuta was posted, and the performance on October 25 includes Stashkevich, Lopatin and Lobukhin.

Lobukhin will dance a different part on the 26th.

The casting for October 27 is perhaps interesting because it includes Lobukhin and Lantratov’s debut as the Student. But while Krysanova and Obraztsova have danced the title role in the past, there will be a debut for Vinogradova instead. (It can't be a question of age, since Stashkevich and Kretova are 37 and 38 respectively, just like Krysanova and Obraztsova.)

Alexandrova had no performances scheduled for October.

P.S. Sevenard has spent her entire career at the Bolshoi. She was supposed to dance Raymonda in Astrakhan on October 15, and presumably had permission, but Obraztsova is going instead, now that her schedule is free. 🧐

Edited by volcanohunter
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Thanks for all you detail here, Volcanohunter. I was wondering what would actually happen.

I knew that Eleonora Sevenard graduated the Mariinsky school (the Vaganova), but the Bolshoi site does confirm that she did go directly to the Bolshoi afterwards as you stated.

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This is a video of Dansomania by Vyacheslav Samodurov. 

It could be called abstract ballet and I’ve seen a lot of these over the years at the Mariinsky. I tend to leave the success of this sort of thing to a few Western ballet companies. I also tend to generally skip the explanations and just go with what I see.

Having watched almost all 20 minutes of this video I do tend to like it. The moves are interesting, well designed and well performed. It’s probably a good step towards ‘contemporary’ in ballet from Russia. I could actually find it believable if the names Tharp or Forsythe were attached to the credits. (‘Derivative’? Not sure. Still like it.) See what you think. I prefer starting at about 4:50.


(Posted by one of the artists)

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