Artistic director of the Bolshoi Ballet Company, Sergei Filin, comments:
The internet is part and parcel of the present-day spectator’s life. Wwb@llet.ru, the title of our forthcoming Ballet Festival, was conceived by analogy with the worldwide web, but the word web was replaced by the word ballet, and thus we got WorldWide Ballet. And by exchanging com for ru, we are saying that worldwide ballet is shown in Russia. In my view our Ballet Festival title hits the nail on the head.
Our aim was to stress the fact that the Bolshoi Theatre Ballet is moving with the times — thus the hint at an internet address. This season, incidentally, with the worldwide live relay of its productions, our Company has been successfully ‘launched’ on the web.
The essence of the Festival is best reflected in the translation of our altered version of the abbreviation: worldwide ballet — ballet from different corners of the world which we gather together on our stage, positioning ourselves as part of a single whole — the worldwide ballet web, in order to present the most interesting things created over the past five-ten years by those of the world’s ballet companies which are looked on as the ‘incubators’ of modern choreography or companies which have a strongly defined face of their own.
We also want to show how we, ourselves, are developing and moving ahead, what we contribute to the world ballet space and how we can cooperate with ballet companies from other countries, establishing links which lead to co-creations, mutual work.
Within the Golden Hour. Maria Kochetkova & Joan Boada. © Erik Tomasson.
Our first Festival (and we, of course, hope it will become a yearly fixture) presents Ballet San Francisco and Ballet Monte-Carlo, two companies which arouse enormous interest with the public of very different countries. Part I of the program will be opened by Ballet San Francisco which, for over 20 years, has been headed by choreographer Helgi Tomasson, and where our fellow countryman and former Bolshoi Theatre dancer, Yuri Possokhov — in my view one of the most interesting of the world’s choreographers — is Choreographer in Residence.
Ballet San Francisco has long had the reputation of one of the world’s ‘incubators’ of modern choreography: each year several original ballets are made there. The Company collaborates with the biggest names in choreography, but very often it is there that new talents become famous.
The Ballet San Francisco program includes fragments from the works of Helgi Tomasson, Christopher Wheeldon, David Bintley, Edward Liang (première March 2012). And it winds up with Yuri Possokhov’s ballet to the music of Sergei Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony. Possokhov created the ballet in 2010 as a tribute to his teacher Pyotr Pestov. Now Classical Symphony is moving from San Francisco to us at the Bolshoi Theatre and it will be danced by our artists in memory of a great teacher of ballet, whose pupils are responsible for many bright pages in the story of the Bolshoi Theatre and world ballet.
Daphnis et Chloé. G. Morlotti, J. Verbruggen, A. Ballesteros-Cilla, B. Coppieters.
Photo Marie-Laure Briane.
Ballets de Monte-Carlo has its own individual face, created by the choreography of the Company’s artistic director, Jean-Christophe Maillot. Part II of our program will consist of the one-act ballet Daphnis et Chloé to music by Ravel in a production by Jean-Christophe Maillot, a choreographer-philosopher whose dance lexicon and profound reading of eternal and topical issues are equally intriguing. We already have experience of collaborating with this Company — last winter in Monte-Carlo, our dancers took part in a co-presentation of Maillot’s new ballet Lac, based on motifs of Swan Lake. Initially we wanted to include an act from this ballet in the Festival program, but we eventually decided that such a conceptual ballet should be shown in full. Within the framework of the present Festival we are presenting Ballets de Monte-Carlo itself, while we hope to show the results of our mutual work in the future.
Part III of the program will present another new work danced by Bolshoi Theatre artists — the world première of the ballet Dream of Dream to the music of the 2nd Rachmaninov Piano Concerto, produced by the remarkable choreographer Jorma Elo. Virtually all our best dancers will be appearing in this ballet.
Thus firstname.lastname@example.org will acquaint our audiences with two foreign ballet companies and will present the premières of two ballets, produced this season at the Bolshoi Theatre.