St Petersburg Ballet Theatre


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France     2012 2011 2009 
The Saint Petersburg Ballet Theatre came into being on 10th November 1994 in Saint Petersburg! This happy event was possible because of the will and energy of a man who decided to acclaim the artistic heritage of his country and of his home city in particular. In creating the company, Konstantin Tachkin performed a miracle! The first performances were Giselle, Don Quixote, Swan Lake, La Bayadère, The Nutcracker and Sleeping Beauty. These were followed by many tours throughout the world to countries such as Germany, Great Britain, Austria, Spain, Belgium, France, Holland, Italy, Ireland, America and Switzerland and to many countries in Africa and Asia. The company was founded in Saint Petersburg on Liteiniy Prospekt. It is proud that is not materially dependent on private sponsors or government subsidies. It is able to exist on income from its performances and company merchandise and also from the sale of its programmes (which are nearly the size of books and sell for 10 Euros). In the programmes, we come across interesting documents and many photographs illustrating the worthy ambition of evaluating the dancers and the company as a whole thanks to whom the performances can take place.

The first four years were crowned by the joining of stars (some of whom really shone) to the company. Since 1998 Irina Kolesnikova, a Vaganova Academy graduate, has been dancing with the company. She adorns every performance with her talent and magical dancing. These performances are becoming more popular with each presentation. The audiences are enraptured by this star of classical dance and her brilliant triumph is becoming her everyday lot. Everywhere she performs tickets are sold out many weeks in advance; her countless fans look forward to meeting her, seeing her up close and getting her autograph. Her admirers often present her with gifts and flowers.

At the beginning of 2011, Paris encountered this artist on the stage of the Théâtre des Champs Elysées where Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty were being performed.

Such was the success that in November-December the company returned with five shows, but this time to the Palais des Congrès where they performed Swan Lake. On 29th 30th and 31st December, they were back at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées with The Nutcracker.

Nowadays there are many companies with fine sounding names coming into being with far too much ease and very little taste. They are of doubtful quality, but the Saint Petersburg Ballet Theatre continues to keep the standards high.

The corps de ballet has improved, especially its male half, thanks to the strict attentions of Anatoliy Sidorov, Merited Artist of Russia and former chief ballet manager of the Mikhailovsky Theatre who has been brought in to strengthen the troupe. His influence and productive impact is palpable. The regal grace with which Dmitri Akulinin dances Prince Siegfried is met with great anticipation.
Mikhail Ovcharov as the jester amazes with his brilliance, virtuosity and precision of movement. His is really one of the strongest performances of the piece.

This particular performance does not show some of the female soloists in a good light with their coquettish facial expressions. One would have expected more restrained and dignified behaviour since we should not forget that the action takes place at court whose main characteristic is one of refinement and nobility.
Notwithstanding the fact that long tours are exhausting, we are delighted that our Star has brought her usual supreme form with her. It is as if Irina is not put out at all by the inconveniences of travelling and seems not to tire. She performs with sparkle displaying her superlative technique. It is this which, at the very beginning of the most complex Black Swan variation, enables her to perform four spins in attitude and, what is more, (and this is a very rare thing), she performs this element three times in a row.

The second decade of the Saint Petersburg ballets existence will soon be upon us. The theatre and the brilliant Irina Kolesnikova have left a considerable mark in the history book of world ballet, a mark which has turned into one of its most glorious and unforgettable pages.

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