No ballet company so influenced the 20th-century intellectual world as did Serge Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, with its signature conceptualization of dance, music and the fine arts as equal partners in a unified art form. From Nijinsky, Picasso and Cocteau to Coco Chanel, Diaghilev gathered the leading artistic lights of his time. Yet even amongst such illustrious company, one figure stands out: Igor Stravinsky, the composer who finally made ballet music acceptable to polite society.
»Les Ballets Russes – Reloaded« now presents some of Stravinsky’s most important compositions. »Les noces«, written in 1913 and which uses the story of Bronislava Nijinsky about a country wedding, is here re-interpreted by Stijn Celis, whose choreographies »Vertigo Maze« and »Cinderella« have already been performed to great acclaim by the Semperoper Ballet company. In »Apollon musagète« (created in 1928 and renamed »Apollo« in 1957), George Balanchine has created a monument to Apollo, who here gives artistic instruction to the three muses Calliope (poetry), Polyhymnia (mime) and Terpsichore (dance). With its focus on simplicity and clarity, »Apollon musagète« is regarded as the earliest example of a neo-classicist ballet. A new version of »Le sacre du printemps«, the crowning succès de scandale of Ballets Russes, premiered in Dresden 2012. This new version is the work of Jacopo Godani, whose »Spazio-Tempo« has already caused its own furore within the city. Jiří Bubeníček, principal soloist of Semperoper Ballett, choreographed a second premiere entitled »Faun«, using the music of Claude Debussy.
Noces, Apollo, Faun, Sacre Choreographies by Stijn Celis, George Balanchine, Jiří Bubeníček and Jacopo Godani
Running time 3 hours
Premiere 23 Jun 2012
Musical Director: Mikhail Agrest
State Opera Choir