January 01, 2006

Ballet Map of Russia

Russian ballet is usually associated with Moscow’s Bolshoi and St. Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theaters, as well as with St. Petersburg’s Ballet Academy on Architect Rossi Street. But there is not a single large city in Russia that does not have at least some sort of theater for opera and ballet, where local performers put on at least some manner of performance of Swan Lake, Giselle or Don Quixote. ¶ Among hundreds of such theaters, which at times can be rather odd institutions, there are approximately 25 major State Theaters funded by federal and regional budgets. Half of them are serious centers of academic art. They have permanent ballet companies consisting of 100 or more dancers,

and their own schools of choreography. Their repertoires include all the popular classics and numerous contemporary productions. These theaters host major international festivals with the participation of leading Russian and foreign dancers. How they pull it off can be a tale more wondrous than Sleeping Beauty.


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