On 15 September 2016 was held the opening ceremony of 241 season of the Bolshoi theatre of Russia. The opening ceremony was attended by General Director of the Bolshoi theatre Vladimir Urin, its Music Director T. Sokhiev, head of the ballet troupe M. Vaziev, Vice-Premier of the Russian government Olga Golodets, Deputy Minister of culture of the Russian Federation Alexander Zhuravsky, as well as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the theatre and the First Deputy Chairman of the state Duma Alexander Zhukov.
The theatre started the season with a humorous film about themselves, in which employees joked about the theatre and and its leadership. “Well, this is good that the Bolshoi theatre opens the season with a cinema” – so spoke about the film A. Zhuravsky. “In what theater can see such a rise of the spirit?” – said after watching “high feature film” the theatre’s Director Vladimir Urin.
The performances of the new season will start on 18 September 2016, with the Opera “Boris Godunov” by M. Mussorgsky.
The audience is waiting for the bright premieres of the Bolshoi theatre. So, on October 16, 2016 will take place Opera “Manon Lescaut” by Puccini with A. Netrebko, on 25 Nov 2016 will be male opera “Billy Budd” by B. Britten in co-production with the English national Opera; in 2017 will be launched “the Idiot” by F. Dostoevsky and M. Weinberg, an Evening of one-act ballet “Etude” by C. Czerny and G. H. Lander, “The snow maiden” by N. Rimsky-Korsakov, “Nureyev” by K. Serebrennikov, as well as a number of commemorative performances, including the 90th anniversary of Yuri Grigorovich.
The Bolshoi theatre is planning a tour in France, Switzerland, USA, Japan and Finland.
At the opening of the season 2016 / 2017, the theater was summed up last season. In total, there were conducted more than 500 performances and touring, including a very successful 3-week performances in England (5 ballets on the stage at Covent garden in London).
About the past and present “E Vesti” has asked the management of the theatre:
E Vesti: I would like to return to the success of Your tour in London. And to ask you following: for the great Russian ballet that everyone knows success is expectable, but if the success exceeds expectations, as it was this time, so there is a hit in the emotional and spiritual space, so You brought something special. How do You explain the excess of expected success?
Makhar Vaziev: We did nothing special or extra to what we usually do, we have worked and will always work, trying to achieve the maximum result, it is not a secret. Another thing, why the interest exceeded expectations. I think that, most likely, it is connected with the emotional side of the actors. I was shocked and grateful to the actors and their teachers for such a brilliant performance. You got me baffled because to praise your theatre is a bit awkward. Probably, Vladimir G. (Urin – approx. ed.) has something to say.
Vladimir Urin: I’ll add just a few words. Our expectations were disturbing, because the tour 2013 was held under the auspices of the events that took place at the Bolshoi theatre. We have not had a single press conference or interview where the first question was not like: “what’s going on?”. By the end of the tour 2013, tone in the press has changed.
And on the current tour – I agree with Makhar – you should open English press, it seems to me that there is a serious rating. Audience component I know from Lilian Hochhauser, who organized the tour. She said: “I Have never had such a number of enemies that appeared as a result of these tours, because the number of people wishing to attend the performances was much larger and I, unfortunately, was not able to provide all with the tickets.”
There is another important component, which is wrote in his book “the Mirror stage” by Georgy Tovstonogov. He usually entered the box by the end of the play, sparkled with his glasses and listened to the auditorium. He just listened to it, because the auditorium does not lie. There is a sense of polite applause. They can be long, even long, but just polite. Or there is a different feeling from the audience who shows the energy of gratitude on stage. In most performances, which were in London, I had a feeling of these retaliatory applause, while the British people are quite reserved.
It was especially great at the play “The taming of the shrew”. After all, we were afraid because we brought Shakespeare to home of Shakespeare, and even in the formulation of the Frenchman. You understand all the relevant components…
Makhar Vaziev: We were especially interested, how will pass this particular show. Of course, we know our advantages, but better we know our disadvantages. But overall the tour went very well and I’m personally very happy.
E Vesti: This season anniversaries of Yuri Grigorovich and Rudolf Nureyev are expected. Could You Express Your personal attitude to these people?
Makhar Vaziev: You know, I can only say one thing that these great people who don’t need any talks, ratings, etc.
I personally regrette the one thing… I was told by Yury Nikolaevich that when he began his sensational ballet “Legend of love” at the Mariinsky theatre , he’s rehearsed it with Nureyev in the role of Farhad, it was initially approved for Nureyev. But then something went wrong, and in the end Nureyev had not danced the role. I can imagine how wonderful it would be if Nureyev danced it. He told me that even Farhad in its variations, where the brand falls on the choreography of Nureyev was something extraordinary.
I think, historically, these great people have created so many amazing things that we dance works and ballets of Yuri Grigorovich until this day, not to mention how many wonderful actors we knew from his ballets. My attitude is that I just have to say: they are great.
E Vesti: I would like to ask a question about the production by Britten opera. Please tell me what goal puts the Bolshoi Theatre in co-production of c the English national Opera? Is this a partnership exchange?
Tugan Sokhiev: This is not the first time we collaborate with English theatre. We have already had a joint production of “Rodelinda”. Today it is practiced everywhere, and we are negotiating on joint productions with the Paris Opera, the Metropolitan, etc. It is common practice for the world’s Opera houses. It is good, when we play the first show in Moscow, then in Paris; or, we play the first show in London and then in Moscow. We get healthy communication of Opera houses in which they act as connecting vessels. We are mutually enriched.