A unique project that brings together world-renowned ballet stars
The Gala’s program that features duets from classic 19th and 20th century ballets highlights the infinite variety of Love: joy and hopes of the first encounter in the duet from ‘Romeo and Juliet’ (music by Sergey Prokofiev), magnetism of mutual attraction in the “pas de deux” of Odile and the Prince from ‘Swan Lake’ (music by Peter Tchaikovsky), sensuous eroticism of the motional dialogue between Zobeide and the Golden Slave from ‘Scheherazade’ (music by Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov), flirtation and coquetry in the meretricious “pas de deux” from ‘Carnival in Venice / Satanilla’ (music by Cesare Pugni), pain and bitterness of betrayal in the duet from ‘Esmeralda’ (music by Cesare Pugni) – these are but a few samples from the Gala night’s program.
Each dance will be presented and staged as a miniature drama, each will make the viewer share the character’s hope, love and pain.
Internationally acclaimed dancers and soloists from the Mariinsky, Bolshoi and Mikhaïlovski Theatres and from other leading Russian and European theatres will take part in the gala night.
It’s noteworthy that all the participants belong to the Russian School of Ballet, with its pure perfection of style, harmony and elegance of every pas, profound dramatism of rendition.
The gala night is in 2 parts, ca. 50 minutes each.
Tickets: 35, 40, 45 and 50 euros.
No tickets of 35 euros in Ghent.
Gala Concert ‘The Great Stories of Love’ targets the widest audience of Belgian ballet and classical music lovers, those who stay attuned to performing arts and the developments in the world of culture. However, even for those who might see a ballet performance for the first time in their lives, it’s a great introduction to the enchantment of a dance show; there’s no doubt that the memory of this encounter with the best Russian artists of our times will prove to be a lasting one…
The two principal ballet centers of Russia, Moscow and St. Petersburg, preserve and cultivate the same traditions that can be traced back to the Imperial times and the emergence of Russian Ballet. However, the difference in the identities of Moscow and St. Petersburg is naturally reflected in the professional style of the dancers from the two cities. St. Petersburg with its aristocratic reserve and elevated elegance stands in stark contrast to the explosive temperament, dynamism and athletic vigor of the Moscow style of dance. In order to let you experience the diversity of the dancing cultures of the two Russian capitals, we invited the members of the most prominent ballet companies, such as Bolshoy Thater (Moscow), Mariinsky and Mikhailovsky Theaters (St. Petersburg) to take part in our project. Most of our dancers have secured prominent positions in the hierarchy of the Russian ballet, amid them are Anastasia Goryacheva (Bolshoy Theater), Oxana Bondareva (Mariinsky Theater), Svetlana Bednenko and Andrey Yakhnyuk (Mikhailovsky Theater) et al. There’re also those who have reached the heights in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and then moved on to adorn the best musical theaters of Europe. These are the soloists of Mariinsky Theater Maxim Chashchegorov and Ekaterina Petina – after saying goodbye to St. Petersburg, they were invited to take prominent positions in Bayerisches Statsballett and Staatsballett Berlin; we will also introduce you to one of the most accomplished European ballet dancers of our times, the star of Hungarian National Ballet Tatiana Melnik, the former prima ballerina of Stanislavsky Musical Theater, Moscow. The concerts’ special guest is the legendary Yelena Pankova, prima ballerina of Mariinsky Theater, English National Ballet and Bayerische Staatsoper – for the last few years Antwerpen has been her home.
The choice of Belgium, the heart of unified Europe, as the opening venue for Grand Ballet Gala ‘The Great Stories of Love’ is definitely not a random one. Back in the 19th century St. Petersburg, Russia, saw the emergence of the ballets that are now known and appreciated worldwide, being on the list of all the major companies. In order to achieve this spectacular breakthrough, the most prominent choreographers and composers of the time were invited to come to St. Petersburg: Ricardo Drigo, Cesare Pugni, Ludwig Minkus, Charles Lous Didelot (whose dancing career began at Thèâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels) et al. In Russia they created their new masterpieces in close collaboration with the Russian masters, such as Alexander Gorsky, Lev Ivanov, Alexander Glazunov and many others.
The period in question, that made such a difference for the subsequent developments in the art of dancing, saw the emergence of the most renowned artistic alliance, that linked together the names of the Russified Frenchman Marius Petipa who had dedicated over forty years of his life to Mariinsky Theater where he worked as the principal choreographer, and that of the great Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Chaikovsky. Their collaboration resulted in the creation of unsurpassed masterpieces, such as ‘Swan Lake’, ‘Nutcracker’ and ‘Sleeping Beauty’.
Grand Ballet Gala ‘The Great Stories of Love’ is not just a concert in the traditional sense of the word, it’s more of a full-fledged show: the two acts will immerse the audience in the richness and diversity of romance, as featured in the duets from the most famous ballet performances of the 19th and 20th centuries. The ecstasy and high hopes of the first encounter from ‘Romeo and Juliet’ (music by Sergey Prokofiev), the touching declaration of love of Odette and the Prince in the famous Adagio from Scene 2 of ‘Swan Lake’, the sensuous eroticism of the dynamic dialogue between Zobeide and the Golden Slave from ‘Sheherazade’ (music by Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov), the flirting and coquetry of the sophisticated pas de deux from ‘The Carnival in Venice’ (music by Cesare Pugni), the pain and bitterness of betrayal in the duet from ‘Esmeralda’ (music by Cezare Pugni) – these are just a few glimpses of what Grand Ballet Gala ‘The Great Stories of Love’ will present at Stadsschouwburg Antwerpen on 14 February and at Capitole Gent on 15 February.