St Petersburg, Concert Hall

How a ballet is staged

The Academy of Young Theatre-Goers

Nadezhda Gonchar
Sofia Gumerova
Sofia Ivanova-Skoblikova
Lyubov Kozharskaya
Anastasia Kolegova
Anastasia Petushkova
Tatiana Tkachenko
Alexei Popov
Alexei Tyutyunnik
David Zaleyev

The Mariinsky Orchestra
Conductor: Gavriel Heine

Script Author: Natalia Entelis
Hosts: Natalia Entelis, Dmitry Korneyev
Stage Director: Alexander Maskalin
Production Designer: Sergei Grachev
Lighting Designer: Roman Peskov
Choreographer: Dmitry Korneyev

In theatre there is a very special world in which the characters neither speak nor sing – this is the mysterious and magical world of dance.
It takes a great deal of effort to become a dancer, and the elegance and ease of the movements require a tremendous amount of hard work. Dancers are taught from a very young age – starting when they are seven or eight years old – and they train for many hours a day for several years.
It is not, however, only professional performers who can dance – anyone can do it. If there were no dances then our lives would be bereft of much of its enjoyment and fun – we all love to dance! And people who say they don’t like dancing have probably just never learned. In times gone by everybody had to be able to dance. Aristocratic families would invite dance masters to give private lessons to their children before they attended their first ball. These dance masters would be quite anxious at times – after all, not everyone can dance well!
Everyone was able to dance, though some were able to dance particularly well and with great elegance – and they took pride in doing so. King Louis XIV of France did not consider it beneath him to dance before his courtiers and show off his skills. But is that how ballet emerged? No, it is not! Ballet only became a true art form when it began to enact various stories. Without any words and set to music. So that tales and stories could be told to music, a special language – the language of dance, the language of gesture – came into being in ballet.
Once the renowned dancer Māris Liepa performed the role of Prince Limone in the ballet Cipollino after the tale by Gianni Rodari. One child present at the performance explained to his mother that “Prince Limone said that Cipollino must be caught.” He had understood the language of ballet without any words, and indeed ballet dancers don’t say a word – they just make gestures and dance!

Running time 1 hour
The concert has no interval

Age category 6+

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