BELGRADE, December 23. /ITAR-TASS/. Peter Tchaikovsky’s ballet “The Nutcracker” which Russian and Serbian artists showed on the stage of the Sava Center concert hall in Belgrade on Sunday night, was a true fairy tale for Belgrade audiences.
Igor Kolb and Olga Yesina, the soloists of the St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre, danced the main parts. Yesina is also a soloist of the Vienna Opera ballet troupe. Another eight dancers of the St. Petersburg Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky Theatres, Serbian ballet artists, pupils of the Belgrade ballet school and a children’s ballet choir from the city of Panchevo also took part in the first night performance.
The ballet is a joint project of the SILB producer company; the Russian Culture in Serbia agency; the Sava Center and the St. Petersburg Dyagilev center, whose heads, Yuri Andreyev and Natalya Toriashvili, had been responsible for choreography. They had also given classes to Serbian children from the Belgrade Ballet School who took part in the ballet.
“Russian and Serbian ballet schools and culture intertwined in this creative project,” Andreyev said. The most difficult thing, he said, was to combine them in a way to make the whole ballet look organic,” he noted.
Ivana Milovanovic, a well-known Serbian theatre critic and the founder of the Orhestra (Orchestra) art magazine, told Itar-Tass that the Nutcracker had been staged in Belgrade for the first time since 1923.
She said that the ballet had been staged in the city of Novi Sad two years before but its Belgrade version was closer to the original production staged in 1892. “The Russian ballet can cure the Serbian ballet which is going through hard times,” Milovanovic emphasized.
Aljona Istokovic, the head of the Russian Culture in Serbia agency, said in turn that although the producers had tried to stick to the original stage design had also made their own creative contribution.
“We tried to combine the two ballet schools and present this spectacular fairy show to the audiences,” Istokovic went on to say. The Belgrade audiences welcomed the ballet dancers and stage directors with a storm of applause. So, the artists and producers can say that they achieved what they wanted to achieve.