Choreographic suite to music by Chopin.
Orchestration by Alexander Glazunov and Maurice Keller.
Choreography by Michel Fokine
The ballet was first staged in 1909. This version was first performed in Perm in 1979. It was revived in 2006.
Chopiniana was one of the first examples of the plotless ballet genre pioneered by Michel Fokine, which influenced the development of the art of dance in the twentieth century. The choreographer reproduced his intuitive concept of ballet in the 1830s and 1840s, basing it on a suite of Chopin’s music orchestrated by Glazunov. Fokine dispensed with virtuoso pirouettes and eloquent pas, striving to show not the perfect technique of modern dancers, but the mood of a bygone age. It was not a plot that played the linking role, but a theme: the dreams of a young Poet surrounded by sylphs, the spirits of the air that embody his dreams. Outside Russia, Chopiniana, which was first performed by Sergei Diaghilev’s company, is known as Les Sylphides, a title that refers back to Filippo Taglioni’s ballet, to which theatre historians trace the introduction of dancing en pointe.
One-act ballet to Berlioz’s orchestration of Weber’s Invitation to the Dance
Idea by Jean-Louis Vaudoyer, based on a poem by Théophile Gautier
Set design for the first production based on sketches by Léon Bakst
The ballet was first staged in 1911. This version was first performed in Perm in 2009.
Alexandre Benois, a contemporary of Michel Fokine, called Le Spectre de la Rose, based on a romantic poem by Gautier, ‘a graceful little bagatelle in the style of the romantic salon ballads of the 1830s’. However, history has accorded this ‘little bagatelle’ a place among the masterpieces of ballet heritage. Michel Fokine, the choreographer of Diaghilev’s newly-formed Ballets Russes, used Weber’s poetic suite Invitation to the Dance for this production. The parts of the Girl, intoxicated by languid fatigue after her first ball, and the Spectre of the Rose, dreamed about by the young debutante, were entrusted to the company’s principal dancers: Tamara Karsavina and Vaslav Nijinsky. Fokine’s choreography was a defining moment for Nijinsky: ballet historians later interpreted the Spectre jumping through the window as the dancer’s leap into madness and immortality.
Choreographic miniature to the music of The Swan from Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of the Animals
Choreography by Michel Fokine
The ballet was first staged in 1907. This version was first performed in Perm in 2010.
The best-known of the 14 pieces in Camille Saint-Saëns’s suite Carnival of the Animals is The Swan, for cello and piano. In 1907, Michel Fokine staged a choreographic monologue to Saint-Saëns’s music at the Mariinsky Theatre; it has gone down in world ballet history as The Dying Swan. Fokine wrote the number for the inimitable Anna Pavlova. On account of her inspired rendition, the swan, like the Moscow Art Theatre’s seagull, became a symbol of academic ballet, and ever since then, Fokine’s number has been considered a secret test for all those aspiring to stardom.
Age category: 6+
One-act ballet, excerpt from Act 2 of the opera Prince Igor
Set design for the original production based on sketches by Nicholas Roerich
The ballet was first staged in 1909. This version was first performed in Perm in 2009.
After being invited by Diaghilev to take over the young Ballets Russes company, Michel Fokine drew ideas for the creation of the repertoire from numerous sources. He turned Polovtsian Dances, a choreographic excerpt from Borodin’s opera Prince Igor, into a work in its own right. A major part in this production was played by the scenery designed by Orientalist Nicholas Roerich, who recreated the image of the wide steppe and the flickering colours of a Polovtsian camp. Polovtsian Dances caused a sensation at its Paris première in 1909, leaving an impression of the reconstructed authentic dances of the descendants of the Scythians.