CriticalDance Forum

Bolshoi 2005-6
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Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Fri Jan 27, 2006 3:56 am ]
Post subject:  Bolshoi 2005-6

Having a Ball
The Bolshoi's upcoming production of "Cinderella" may pack a few surprises for ballet traditionalists.
By Raymond Stults for The Moscow Times

After an absence of nearly 33 years, Sergei Prokofiev's ballet "Cinderella" returns on Thursday to the Bolshoi Theater, in a new production that seems almost certain to raise the hackles of many among Moscow's more conservative ballet-going public and -- from advance reports -- to delight those who welcome the Bolshoi's excursions into the world of 21st-century dance.

click for more

Author:  Cassandra [ Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:05 am ]
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Here is a review of the new Cinderella choreographed by former Bolshoi principal Yuri Posokhov. Seems to have been a hit in the opinion of Mr Stults and apparently with a plum role for one of my favourite Bolshoi dancers - Gennadi Yanin.


I wonder if they will bring it over for their next London season?

Author:  Guest [ Thu Feb 16, 2006 2:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Bolshoi 2005-6

Stuart Sweeney wrote:
Having a Ball
The Bolshoi's upcoming production of "Cinderella" may pack a few surprises for ballet traditionalists.
By Raymond Stults for The Moscow Times

After an absence of nearly 33 years, Sergei Prokofiev's ballet "Cinderella" returns on Thursday to the Bolshoi Theater, in a new production that seems almost certain to raise the hackles of many among Moscow's more conservative ballet-going public and -- from advance reports -- to delight those who welcome the Bolshoi's excursions into the world of 21st-century dance.

click for more

It has bee rumoured that this production of Cinderella will be seen in London this summer along side, Don Q, Swan Lake, Daughter of the Pharoah and The Bright Stream.

Author:  Cassandra [ Fri Feb 17, 2006 4:01 am ]
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It has now been officially confirmed that The Bolshoi Ballet comes to London for a summer season together with the Bolshoi Opera this year.

The season lasts from 25th July to 19th August opening with a week of opera performances of Boris Godunov and The Fiery Angel. The Ballet kicks off on 31st July for a full three weeks. They will be bringing the following ballets:

Cinderella chor. Posokhov

The Bright Stream chor. Ratmansky

The Daughter of the Pharaoh chor. Lacotte

Don Quixote

Swan Lake

The Following dancers are listed to appear:

Maria Alexandrova
Maria Allash
Svetlana Lunkina
Natalia Osipova
Ekaterina Shipulina
Anastasia Yatsenko
Svetlana Zakharova

Nikolai Tsiskaridze
Dmitri Belogolovtsev
Sergei Filin
Dmitri Goudanov
Yuri Klevtsov
Denis Matvienko
Ruslan Skvortsov
Andrei Uvarov

Booking opens for both the opera and ballet on Thursday 11th May.

Author:  Cassandra [ Tue Feb 28, 2006 9:12 am ]
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I've just heard that a triple bill is almost certain to be added to the repertoire that has already been announced, more details anon.

Author:  Cassandra [ Mon Mar 06, 2006 9:20 am ]
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The triple bill added to the original programme is as follows:

Go For Broke chor. Ratmansky
Pique Dame chor. Petit
Symphony In C chor. Balanchine

Author:  Cassandra [ Tue Apr 11, 2006 5:46 am ]
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When the Bolshoi finally returns to its home theatre after the rebuilding programme things aren't going to look the same as before. I guessed the communist insignia would go, but I'll really miss the front curtain with its sheaves of grain and hammers and sickles. On seeing that curtain for the first time I immediately thought of Peter Sellars in the film "I'm all Right Jack", where his shop steward character gazes into the distance and says something like 'all those fields of corn and ballet in the evenings". The new Russia is nothing like that.

Author:  Cassandra [ Fri May 12, 2006 9:49 am ]
Post subject:  Bolshoi in Baden Baden

The programme for the Christmas season at Baden Baden has just been announced as follows:

23.12.06 Cinderella

25.12.06 Swan Lake

26.12.06 (mat 7 eve) Swan Lake

27.12.06 Swan Lake

28.12.06 Don Quixote

29.12.06 Don Quixote

Author:  Cassandra [ Mon Jun 12, 2006 5:05 am ]
Post subject:  Bolshoi Theatre Rebuilding Programme

There is a very informative article about the current state of the Bolshoi Theatre as it undergoes vital rennovations in the current BBC Music Magazine. The photos of that familiar building stripped to the bare bones both inside and out come as a shock as it looks as if much of the place will be rebuilt from scratch.

Building regulations meant that earlier plans to extend the existing theatre have been turned down, so to provide the extra space thats needed the only option is to go down, rather like the ROH Linbury Theatre, I imagine. As the wooden piles that support the theatre have rotted away and the actual ground the Bolshoi is built on is a virtually marsh due to the existence of an underground river, this will prove quite a feat of engineering.

I can't help thinking that the 2008 re-opening date might be a little unrealistic.

Author:  Cassandra [ Wed Jun 14, 2006 10:04 am ]
Post subject:  More on the re-building

Another article regarding the re-building work at the Bolshoi. This one in the G2 section of The Guardian takes the rather alarmist view that the Bolshoi "is already dead".

Lots of silly stuff about 'vastly reduced' audience capacity at the new temporary bases is complete nonsense as the Kremlin Palace is massive and seats thousands and the Bolshoi dancers are very familiar with the place having danced there on and off for decades.

Nor is there anything unusual, as suggested here, about the "length and scope" of the London season, they just haven't been here in a while, thats all. The idea that the dancers would rather dance anywhere than Moscow is ludicrous. They love their theatre and are not slow in telling people so.

And feral cats over-running the place? They had a cat, as most theatres do, to keep the mice population down, she was rather prolific at having kittens though. One up-market opera house I know of doesn't have a cat and is consequently inhabited by mice (one of the dancers told me) they keep very quiet about it though.

Heres the offending article:,,1796954,00.html

Author:  coda [ Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:40 pm ]
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Cassandra thinks that this article is offending. I agree, it IS offending and stinks of cheap sensationalism because the author is drawing illogical, unjustified conclusions out of the facts she described.

“It looks like a ruin...” “Rubbish chutes descend from 10 stores up. The dramatic marble fountain is switched off. The air is dusty and suffocating.”
Has Viv Groskop ever seen buildings under reconstruction? When they are stripped of paint and plaster and decorative details, they do look like ruins.
Has this lady ever been to a building site? If not, she can make a trip to the City of London or Docklands and to see rubbish chutes there, dusty air and fountains switched off if they share some communications with the building site.
Why does she call temporary performances on a smaller stage “a sorry state of affairs”? This is a normal state of affairs. No other theatre in Moscow can match the Bolshoi like no other theatre building in London can match the Royal Opera House. So when the main building is under reconstruction, the performances have to be carried out in another venues.

And this sensational headline: 'The Bolshoi is already dead'. Has Groskop seen the performances? We saw them here last Spring and were satisfied that the Bolshoi is very much alive and kicking.

This is a dead journalism for me. The lies in this article were so unprecedented that the Bolshoi reacted with a letter. I haven’t seen it in The Guardian (I don’t buy this paper) but read about it in the Russian ‘Izvestiya’ on 19.06.2006. ... c&start=60

The Bolshoi’s Director-General Anatoly Iksanov said in an interview: “Of course we are not going to take legal proceedings against The Guardian but we have already written a letter to the Editor. The author of this article Viv Groskop simply could not cope with the information avalanche that came down on her. In fact, what was written is an utter nonsense. And absolutely tendentious with that! How can she possibly say that the theatre is collapsing, is covered in scaffoldings and nobody works there? The average of 800 people work inside the building every day. Furthermore, what does she know about our financial situation? The financing has been increased six fold, and it is being done on a regular basis, according to the plan. The theatre’s own revenue has quadrupled. When the Covent Garden Theatre was under reconstruction recently, they didn’t have another venue at all. But we have one. And how is all this related to some retired KGB officer whom the author quoted?.. She is under complete delirium! Someone is very much against our visit to London. This is how I see it."

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:52 pm ]
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Coda, in your view, do you think the renovation work will be completed by Spring 2008?

Author:  coda [ Wed Jun 21, 2006 4:40 pm ]
Post subject: 

Dear Stuart,
Who can predict that?
Last week all underground works have been suspended until the theatre building is securely strengthened. The Bolshoi is such a great and important Moscow landmark and national treasure that all possible precautions MUST be undertaken. The risk factor here should be zero.
However, the Head of the Federal Agency for Culture and Cinema Mr.Shvydkoi announced that the Bolshoi will open its doors for the audience in September 2008 and the rehearsals will already start in March that year. This is quite a sensational statement. Can he be trusted? Considering that he is that former Minister of Culture who five years ago didn’t even inform Vladimir Vassilyev of his dismissal from the post of the Bolshoi’s Artistic Director (Vassilyev learnt about it when listening to the radio in his car), will you trust the statement made by this man?
I personally worry about many things, most of all about the safety of that incomparable building, its remarkable acoustics, its glorious stage – it was called the best stage in the world by many people who performed all over the world: Shaliapin, Plissetskaya, Ananiashvili, Tsiskaridze and many others. The timing is also very important. Many dancers, especially those who are in their 30s, talked in their interviews about the dream to be back on their favourite stage. You don’t know how loyal the Bolshoi’s people are to their theatre. Just one example: Maris Liepa used to keep a piece of wood from the Bolshoi’s stage, which he picked during some repair works and to take it in the boot of his car when he travelled.
Everyone who loves the Bolshoi is worried about the progress and quality of its reconstruction. Unfortunately, this attitude was not adopted by the Guardian author. Her article is a pack of rubbish written by an incompetent reporter.

Author:  coda [ Wed Jul 05, 2006 4:09 pm ]
Post subject: 

Here is a reply to the article in The Guardian by the Bolshoi's Director General:,,329 ... 99,00.html

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