All news

Controversial Nureyev ballet gets ovation during first night at Bolshoi

The ballet is based on the life of legendary Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev

MOSCOW, December 10. /TASS/. The ballet Nureyev, which premiered on Saturday at Moscow’s landmark Bolshoi Theatre, received a more than a 15-minute long ovation from viewers, a TASS correspondent reported from the event.


"Outstanding ballet" and landmark event

Officials and members of the creative community, who visited the ballet, spoke highly of it. Russian journalist Vladimir Pozner called the show "a phenomenon." "I believe that this is an outstanding ballet," he said.

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts President Irina Antonova, in her turn, said she enjoyed the music. "I think that the second act was just perfect. I liked the music element and the way it was brought into life. However, I think that there was too much spoken text," she said. "But the public will watch it with pleasure and interest."

The show was also visited by Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov. He said he saw nothing provocative in the show, which he described as "an event of global significance."


Auction of memories

The ballet, based on the life of legendary Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev, is set as an auction. It begins with the conductor’s baton lot, with which Nureyev made his debut in Vienna, and goes on with more lots - costumes from different periods of his life, personal letters that are read out loud by actor Igor Vernik from the Moscow Art Theater.

The show runs for 2.5 hours, with an intermission. The audience gets to see his entire life - from the ballet classes as a boy, to his fatal illness - the dancer tested HIV positive in the 1980s.


Bolshoi's Nureyev ballet

Composer Ilya Demutsky, choreographer Yury Posokhov, as well as director, scriptwriter and scene designer Kirill Serebrennikov, who has been charged with fraud and is currently under house arrest, worked to create the show last season. As a sign of solidarity, some of the dancers wore t-shirts with his name during the curtain call.

The ballet was originally slated to open on July 11, 2017, but the Bolshoi administration decided to postpone it saying the show was not ready to run yet.

Another show will take place on Sunday, followed by a pause until May 2018.