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The Moscow Classical Ballet Theatre premieres in Belgium
After their overwhelming success in October 2017 in Koninklijk Theatre Carré in Amsterdam, this famous Russian ballet company is coming for the first time to Belgium. The Moscow Classical Ballet Theatre will give only 2 performances of the beautiful fairy-tale Coppelia, on 20 March in Stadsschouwburg Antwerpen and on 21 March in Capitole Gent. Don’t miss these shows!
Coppelia is a magical fairy-tale comedy for all ages
Coppelia tells the story of a young man Franz who fell in love with Coppelia, not knowing she is just a mechanical doll created by the brilliant inventor Dr. Coppelius. His bride Swanhilda has to compete against the mysterious Coppelia to win back her beloved fiancée. When Swanilda learns the truth about Coppelia, she challenges Coppelius and Franz by pretending to be Coppelia. When Dr. Coppelius finds his doll back by the window, stripped of her clothes and wig, he sinks down overwhelmed while Swanhilda and Franz rediscover their love. All ends well with a wedding, just the way it should be in a fairy-tale!
This story is particularly relevant nowadays – the artificial standards of beauty are so popular all over the world. Coppelia depicts an ideal woman, a dream come true that does not exist in reality. So Franz, preferring a mechanical doll over his real bride, makes us think about the influences of social- and mass-media.
About the work
Coppelia is a comic ballet originally choreographed by Arthur Saint-Léon to the music of Léo Delibes, with libretto by Arthur Saint-Léon and Charles Nuitter based upon two stories by E. T. A. Hoffmann: Der Sandmann (The Sandman) and Die Puppe (The Doll). Coppelia premiered on 25 May 1870 at the Théâtre Impérial l’Opéra in Paris. The French composer Léo Delibes wrote music with Hungarian intonations. The ballet itself brings together the traditions of French, Italian and Russian choreography.
The Moscow Classical Ballet Theatre
For the past 40 years, Natalia Kasatkina and Vladimir Vasiljov (who passed away in August 2017) have been the artistic directors of this world-famous ballet company from Moscow. Founded in 1966 by the Ministry of Culture of the Soviet Union, it has been the flagship theatre in Russia next to Bolshoi and Mariinsky ballets. Since 1977 Natalia Kasatkina, a prima ballerina at Bolshoi back then, has been the chief choreographer and still works daily with the dancers.
As always in productions of Natalia Kasatkina and Vladimir Vasilyov, the beautiful old ballet finds its new image, becomes dynamic and exciting. The vintage choreography is carefully preserved, but at the same time cleverly adapted with the new dances that are bright and creative. Choreographers keep the mysterious atmosphere and offer a lot of surprises to the audience – for example, the funny new characters of the live chair, wardrobe, musical box; fantastic mechanisms and toys. And, of course, inventive decoration sets and luxurious costumes.
Natalia Ognyova dances Coppelia. She trained at the ballet academy in Novosibirsk and joined the Moscow Classical Ballet Theatre in 1994 where she had an impressive career as a principal. As one of the Italian reviewers called her “elegant and lyrical, full of technical brio”. She is in great demand as a guest artist at dance galas in Russia and abroad.
Franz is performed by Artem Khoroshilov who graduated from one of the top five ballet schools in Russia in Saratov. He performs regularly as a guest artist on-stage of the best theatres in Russia and received international recognition. For his performance in ‘Sleeping Beauty’ the Italian media called him “A princely dancer with flowing line and intelligent, musical phrasing”.
Tickets: 34, 44, 54 and 64 euros.