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2016
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December 8, TH
Evening:   Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky)   Performance information
Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Composer: Ilya Demutsky
Choreographer: Yuri Possokhov
Director, Designer and Author of Libretto: Kirill Serebrennikov
Costume Designers: Elena Zaitseva, Kirill Serebrennikov
Music Durector: Anton Grishanin
The world premiere took place on 22 July 2015.
The first and the second parts are performed without intermission.
Running time: 2 hours 15 minutes.

Synopsis

Can it be that wickedness is so attractive?..
Pechorin"s diary

BELA

1.
Prologue
Pechorin alone.
When I saw Bela in my own house; when, for the first time, I held her on my knee and kissed her black locks, I, fool that I was, thought that she was an angel sent to me by sympathetic fate... Again I was mistaken; the love of a savage is little better than that of your lady of quality, the barbaric ignorance and simplicity of the one weary you as much as the coquetry of the other. I am not saying that I do not love her still; I am grateful to her for a few fairly sweet moments; I would give my life for her - only I am bored with her... Whether I am a fool or a villain I know not; but this is certain, I am also most deserving of pity - perhaps more than she...
Bela"s funerals.
Muezzin"s exequial cant and a voice of a Russian wailer are heard.
How tiresome... I went away to order a coffin. Should I have erected a cross? No, a cross would not have done!..
...After all, she was not a Christian.

2.
Celebration.
Mountaneers, Pechorin, Kazbich.

Bela appears.
"What was it she sang - do you remember?"
"It went like this, I fancy: "Handsome, they say, are our young horsemen, and the tunics they wear are garnished with silver; but handsomer still is the young Russian officer, and the lace on his tunic is wrought of gold. Like a poplar amongst them he stands, but in gardens of ours such trees will grow not nor bloom!"
"Well, now, what do you think of her?"
"Charming! What is her name?"
"Her name is Bela."
"Bela."
"It is a bad thing to interfere in other people"s quarrels. Wouldn"t it be better for us to clear off without loss of time?"
"Wait, though, and see how it will end!"
"Oh, as to that, it will be sure enough to end badly; it is always so with these Asiatics. Once let them get drunk on buza, and there"s certain to be bloodshed."
Pechorin abducts Bela.

3.
Bela at Pechorin"s.
She sits in the corner, muffled in her veil, and neither speaks nor looks up - timid as a wild chamois! I have hired the wife of our dukhan-keeper: she will look after Bela and accustom her to the idea that she belongs to me - for she shall belong to no one else!
No one!
Pechorin seduces Bela.
"Listen, my Peri, surely you know that you will have to be mine sooner or later - why, then, do you but torture me? Is it that you are in love with some Chechene? If so, I will let you go home at once. Or is it that I am utterly hateful to you? Or that your faith prohibits you from giving me a little of your love? Believe me, Allah is one and the same for all races; and, if he permits me to love you, why, then, should he prohibit you from requiting me by returning my love? Listen, my dear, good Bela! You see how I love you. I am ready to give up everything to make you cheerful once more. I want you to be happy, and, if you are going to be sad again, I shall die. Tell me, you will be more cheerful?"

Bela is happy.

Pechorin returns. He has lost interest in his abductee.
Bela"s heart is broken.

4.
Mountaneers. Kazbich. Bela"s death.
"I don"t want to die!.. It burns..."
"Where?"
"Here in my breast... Piercing... As a red-hot blade... Water, water!..
"Where is father?! Grisha... I want back to the mountains, back home...
"Grishaaa... Why don"t you love your janechka anymore?.. Is it because I am not a Christian? How terrible, Grisha... how terrible... our souls will not meet in the other world... in Paradise another woman will be your companion..."
"Do you want to be baptized?"
"No... I will die in the faith in which I was born... It is better now... Go to bed, Grisha... Kiss me, Grisha... I beg of you..."
Pechorin and the dead Bela. He is uncertain whether he should bury her as a Christian or as a Muslim.
The mountains of Caucasus are not moved by human pain.

TAMAN

1.
Pechorin arrives at Taman.
Taman is the nastiest little hole of all the seaports of Russia. I was all but starved there, to say nothing of having a narrow escape of being drowned. I arrived late at night by the post-car... The sentry, a Cossack from the Black Sea, hearing the jingle of the bell, cried out, sleepily, in his barbarous voice, "Who goes there?" An under-officer of Cossacks and a headborough came out. I explained that I was an officer bound for the active-service detachment on Government business, and I proceeded to demand official quarters. The headborough conducted us round the town. Whatever hut we drove up to we found to be occupied. The weather was cold; I had not slept for three nights; I was tired out, and I began to lose my temper.
"Take me somewhere or other, you scoundrel!" I cried; "to the devil himself, so long as there"s a place to put up at!"
"There is one other lodging," answered the headborough, scratching his head. "Only you won"t like it, sir. It is uncanny!"

2.
A mysterious house at the sea shore. The wind is blowing.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"You are the master"s son?"
"No."
"Who are you, then?
"An orphan - a poor boy."
"Has the mistress any children?"
"No, her daughter ran away and crossed the sea with a Tartar."
"Not a single icon to be seen on the wall - a bad sign!"
Undine appears.
Pechorin falls in love with the strange beauty.
Certainly never before had I seen a woman like her. She was by no means beautiful; but, as in other matters, I have my own prepossessions on the subject of beauty. There was a good deal of breeding in her... Breeding in women, as in horses, is a great thing...
Breeding is chiefly to be detected in the gait, in the hands and feet; the nose, in particular, is of the greatest significance. In Russia a straight nose is rarer than a small foot.
Undine disappears.
Alone, Pechorin falls asleep.

3.
Pechorin"s dream. March of uncanny creatures.
I confess that I have a violent prejudice against all blind, one-eyed, deaf, dumb, legless, armless, hunchbacked, and such-like people. I have observed that there is always a certain strange connection between a man"s exterior and his soul; as, if when the body loses a limb, the soul also loses some power of feeling.
Undine reappears. Seagulls cry.
Pechorin and Undine"s love duet.
"Tell me, my beauty, what were you doing on the roof to-day?"
"I was looking to see from what direction the wind was blowing."
"What did you want to know for?"
"Whence the wind blows comes happiness."
"Well? Were you invoking happiness with your song?"
"Where there is singing there is also happiness."
"But what if your song were to bring you sorrow?"
"Well, what then? Where things won"t be better, they will be worse; and from bad to good again is not far."
"And who taught you that song?"
"Nobody taught me; it comes into my head and I sing; whoever is to hear it, he will hear it, and whoever ought not to hear it, he will not understand it."
Undune lures Pechorin at sea.
"To-night, when everyone is asleep, go out to the shore."
"Follow me! Let us get into the boat."
"What is the meaning of this?"
"It means, it means that I love you!.."
"What do you want?.."
Undine tries to drown Pechorin. They struggle.
Pechorin manages to survive.

4.
Pechorin searches for Undine in vain.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"How come that you have a daughter?"
"I am deaf. I don"t hear you."
"You don"t have a daughter, do you?"
"I am deaf as a post."
"Now, then, you little blind devil. Tell me, where were you roaming with the bundle last night, eh?"
"Where did I go? I did not go anywhere... With the bundle?.. What bundle?"

5.
Seashore at night. Smugglers.
Arrival of Yanko, leader of smugglers and Undine"s lover.
Yanko, Undine, the Blind Boy.
"Yanko, all is lost! He saw us.. He will tell on us...
"Listen, you blind one... She is coming with me. It is impossible for her to remain here. Tell the old woman that it is time for her to die; she has been here a long time, and the line must be drawn somewhere. As for us, she will never see us any more."
"And I?.."
"What use have I for you?"
"Come on, Yanko..."
Undine and Yanko get away.
The Blind Boy and Pechorin remain alone.

Thank Heaven an opportunity of getting away presented itself in the morning, and I left Taman. What became of the old woman and the poor blind boy I know not. And, besides, what are the joys and sorrows of mankind to me - me, a travelling officer, and one, moreover, with an order for post-horses on Government business?

PRINCESS MARY

1.
Prologue - Pechorin"s solo
Yesterday I arrived at Pyatigorsk. I have engaged lodgings at the extreme end of the town, the highest part, at the foot of Mount Mashuk: during a storm the clouds will descend on to the roof of my dwelling. This morning at five o"clock, when I opened my window, the room was filled with the fragrance of the flowers growing in the modest little front-garden. Branches of bloom-laden bird-cherry trees peep in at my window, and now and again the breeze bestrews my writing-table with their white petals... Blithe is life in such a land! A feeling akin to rapture is diffused through all my veins. The air is pure and fresh, like the kiss of a child; the sun is bright, the sky is blue - what more could one possibly wish for? What need, in such a place as this, of passions, desires, regrets?..

2.
Watering-place society.
Medical treatment, exercises, water well.

Grushnitski arrives with the wounded soldiers.
Grushnitski and Pechorin meet.
"You are embittered against the whole human race?"
"And I have cause to be..."
"Oh, really?"

Mary"s arrival.
Pechorin understands that Grushnitski is in love with Mary.

I have never known a waist more voluptuous and supple! Her fresh breath touched my face; at times a lock of hair, becoming separated from its companions in the eddy of the waltz, glided over my burning cheek... She was out of breath, her eyes were dulled, her half-open lips were scarcely able to whisper the indispensable: "Merci, monsieur."

Vera"s appearance.

Has destiny brought us together again in the Caucasus, or has she come hither on purpose, knowing that she would meet me?.. There is not a man in the world over whom the past has acquired such a power as over me...

Pechorin and Vera.
"Vera!"
"I knew that you were here."
"We have not seen each other for a long time."
"A long time, and we have both changed in many ways."
"Consequently you love me no longer?.."
"I am married!.."
"Again? A few years ago, however, that reason also existed, but, nevertheless..."
"Perhaps you love your second husband?.. Or is he very jealous? What then? He is young, handsome and, I suppose, rich - which is the chief thing - and you are afraid?.."
"Tell me, do you find it very amusing to torture me? I ought to hate you. Since we have known each other, you have given me naught but suffering..."
"Perhaps, it is for that very reason that you have loved me; joys are forgotten, but sorrows never..."

Mary helps Grushnitski who has pretended he is wounded in order to attract her attention.
Pechorin mockers Grushnitski, and he becomes furious.

"Did you see? She is an angel, simply an angel!"
"Why?"
"Did you not see, then?"
"No. I saw her picking up your tumbler. If there had been an attendant there he would have done the same thing - and quicker too, in the hope of receiving a tip. It is quite easy, however, to understand that she pitied you; you made such a terrible grimace when you walked on the wounded foot."
"And can it be that seeing her, as you did, at that moment when her soul was shining in her eyes, you were not in the least affected?"
"No."

Pechorin and Mary remain alone with each other.
"I have heard, Princess, that although quite unacquainted with you, I have already had the misfortune to incur your displeasure... that you have considered me insolent. Can that possibly be true?"
"Would you like to confirm me in that opinion now?".
"If I had the audacity to insult you in any way, then allow me to have the still greater audacity to beg your pardon... And, indeed, I should very much like to prove to you that you are mistaken in regard to me..."

Mary falls under Pechorin"s spell.
Grushnitski is jealous.

3.
Gentlemen"s club. Grushnitski complains about Pechorin"s actions. He thinks Pechorin is going to conquer Mary for himself.

A ball commences.
Polonaise. Waltz. Polka.
Pechorin dances with Mary.
"I did not expect this from you."
"What?"
"You are going to dance the mazurka with her? She admitted it..."
"Well, what then? It is not a secret, is it?"
"Of course not... I ought to have expected such a thing from that chit - that flirt... I will have my revenge, though!"
"You should lay the blame on your cloak, or your epaulettes, but why accuse her? What fault is it of hers that she does not like you any longer?.."
"But why give me hopes?"
"Why did you hope? To desire and to strive after something - that I can understand! But who ever hopes?"
"You have won the wager, but not quite."
Quarrel between Grushnitski and Pechorin. Grushnitski challenges Pechorin.

4.
Vera"s letter.
Pechorin and Vera.

Vera (soprano):
I am writing to you in the full assurance that we shall never see each other again. A few years ago on parting with you I thought the same...
it has been Heaven"s will to try me a second time...
...I have not been able to endure the trial, my frail heart has again submitted to the well-known voice...
...you will not despise me for that - will you?
will you?
will you?
...We are parting for ever.
...you may be sure
that I shall never
love another

never

upon you
my soul has exhausted
all its treasure,
its tears
its hopes

...in your nature
there is
something peculiar
there is
something proud and mysterious...
in your voice
there is an invincible power

no one
can so constantly wish to be loved
in no one
is wickedness ever so attractive
no one"s
glance promises so much bliss...
bliss...
bliss...

no one
can better make use of his advantages
and no one
can be
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
as you...

5.
Pechorin and Grushnitski before the duel.
Each is contemplating his own thoughts.
Seconds appear. The duel is prepared.
Pechorin and Grushnitski swap their pistols.
The duel.
"Grushnitski! There is still time: recant your slander, and I will forgive you everything. You have not succeeded in making a fool of me; my self-esteem is satisfied. Remember - we were once friends..."
"Fire! I despise myself and I hate you. If you do not kill me I will lie in wait for you some night and cut your throat. There is not room on the earth for both of us..."
Fire.
Grushnitski is killed.

Vera appears.
Vera (soprano):
I almost fainted at the thought that you had to fight a duel to-day... it seemed to me that I should go mad...

...I am sure
that you remain alive

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

impossible...

|impossible...

impossible...

6.
Pechorin realizes that he has killed his friend.
Pangs of conscience.
Vera (soprano):
I have been sitting at the window
three hours now,
awaiting your return...
But you are alive, you cannot have died!..

Good-bye, good-bye!..
If I could be sure
that you will always remember me -
I no longer say love
- no,
only remember...
only remember...
only remember...
Mary appears.
Pechorin tells her that he doesn"t love her.
"Princess, you know that I have been making fun of you?.. You must despise me. Consequently, you cannot love me..."
"Oh, God!"
Mary is disgraced.

Pechorin, Mary, Vera.
"You do not love Mary, do you? You will not marry her? Listen, you must offer me that sacrifice. I have lost everything in the world for you..."

7.
Epilogue.
Pechorin. Pechorin. Pechorin.
And now... I often ask myself, as my thoughts wander back to the past: why did I not wish to tread that way, thrown open by destiny, where soft joys and ease of soul were awaiting me?.. No, I could never have become habituated to such a fate! I am like a sailor born and bred on the deck of a pirate brig: his soul has grown accustomed to storms and battles; but, once let him be cast upon the shore, and he chafes, he pines away, however invitingly the shady groves allure, however brightly shines the peaceful sun. The livelong day he paces the sandy shore, hearkens to the monotonous murmur of the onrushing waves, and gazes into the misty distance: lo! yonder, upon the pale line dividing the blue deep from the grey clouds, is there not glancing the longed-for sail, at first like the wing of a seagull, but little by little severing itself from the foam of the billows and, with even course, drawing nigh to the desert harbour?..

Video
Evening:   Don Carlos (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi)   Performance information
Don Carlos (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in four acts
Music Director: Vassily Sinaisky
Stage Director: Adrian Noble
Set Designer: Tobias Hoheisel
Costume Designer: Moritz Junge
Lighting Designer: Jean Kalman
Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Permiered on December 17, 2013

In Honor of Giuseppe Verdi Bicentennial

SYNOPSIS

In 1556, the Emperor Charles V abdicated, celebrated his own funeral and retired to the monastery of San Jeronimo at Yuste. His son Philip II is now on the throne of Spain. To seal the peace between France and Spain after a long war, Philip marries Elisabeth of Valois, the daughter of Henry II, the French King, who has long been betrothed to his son Don Carlo.

ACT I

Scene 1
The cloister of the Yuste monastery

A Monk prays before the gates of the tomb of Charles V. Carlo starts at the sound of the voice - is this his grandfather, the Emperorn
Carlo s friend Rodrigo, the Marquis of Posa, joins him, and advises him to conquer his sorrow caused by losing his bride by a noble enterprise - that of freeing Flanders. The two vow to live and die together.

Scene 2
Outside the Yuste monastery gates

Outside the monastery, which no woman but the Queen may enter, her ladies while away the time with the song Princess Eboli sings.

The Queen enters, followed by Posa, who brings Elisabeth a letter from her mother and, under cover of the letter, a note from Carlo. While Eboli and Posa chat about the latest Paris fashions, Elisabeth reads the note, which tells her to trust Posa. In two broad strophes, Posa urges Elisabeth grant Carlo an interview, while Eboli (in asides) reveals her love for Carlo, and her hope that he loves her. Dismissing her ladies, Elisabeth consents to Posa s request. Carlo, at first controlled, asks Elisabeth to obtain the King s permission that he should leave for Flanders, but then his emotions overcome him and he falls to the ground in a swoon. On recovering, he clasps Elisabeth in his arms, defying the world. But she exclaims, "Then smite your father. Come stained with his murder, to lead your mother to the altar." Carlo runs off in despair.

Philip enters, angry to find the Queen unattended. Coldly he orders the lady-in-waiting who should have been with her to return to France. Elisabeth consoles her. The company leaves, but Philip orders Posa to remain: has he no favour to ask forn "Nothing for me," replies the Marquis, "but for others"; and, invited to speak freely, he describes the terror and destruction being wrought in Flanders. "At this bloody price," says Philip, "I have paid for the peace of the world." "The peace of a graveyard," Posa replies: one word from Philip could change the world and set people free. The King, struck by Posa s fearless honesty, confides to him his suspicions about his wife and his son, and appoints him his personal counsellor, but bids him beware the Grand Inquisitor.

ACT II

Scene 1
The Queen s gardens

Carlo enters, reading a note of midnight assignation which he believes has come from Elisabeth. When Eboli (who wrote the note) enters, masked, Carlo mistakes her for Elisabeth, and pours out his love. Too late, the mistake is revealed, and Eboli guesses his secret. Posa enters and tries to silence her, but in a tense trio she bids them beware the fury of a woman scorned. Posa asks Carlo to entrust to him any incriminating papers he may be carrying, and after a moment s hesitation - can he trust the King s new favouriten - Carlo does so.

Scene 2
A large square before the Basilica of Nuestra Senora de Atocha

The people gather to acclaim their King. Monks escort some Inquisition victims across the square; a splendid auto da fe, or public burning of heretics, is among the attractions of the day. Philip appears from the church and swears solemnly to serve God with fire and the sword. Suddenly a group of men cast themselves at his feet, and Carlo, who has led them there, announces that they are deputies from Flanders. The Flemings break into an eloquent plea for their country. Philip orders them to be taken away. All - except the monks - urge him to show mercy. At the close of the huge ensemble, Carlo asks his father to send him to Flanders as regent, and when Philip refuses, draws his sword on the King. No one dares to disarm him, until Posa steps forward. The King rewards Posa by making him a Duke, and the festive chorus is resumed.

ACT III

Scene 1
The King s study

Philip is alone in his study and reflects gloomily on his loveless, careworn life. The Grand Inquisitor is announced. Philip doubts whether he will be forgiven if he condemns his son to death; the Inquisitor demands that Posa should be handed over to the Inquisition. Philip refuses. The Inquisitor declares that Philip himself is in danger of being summoned before the Inquisition and leaves.

Elisabeth rushes in, distressed that her jewel casket has been stolen. Philip, who has it, opens it and draws out a portrait of Carlo. Elisabeth reminds him that she was once betrothed to the Prince, but he calls her an adulterous wife. She swoons. Eboli and Posa enter, and in a quartet Philip curses his unworthy suspicions, Eboli expresses her regret (for it was she who stole the casket), Posa decides that the time has come for him to take action, and Elisabeth, reviving, laments her unhappy life in this friendless country.

The two women are left alone. Eboli confesses that, drive by jealousy, she denounced Elisabeth to the King. At Eboli s further confession, that she has been Philip s mistress, Elisabeth tells her to choose, the following day, between exile and the veil, and leaves. Eboli curses the gift of fatal beauty that has caused her ruin. Her thoughts turn to Carlo, and she resolves to save him during the one day this is left to her.

Scene 2
Don Carlo s prison

Posa comes to bid Carlo farewell; he is marked for death, since Carlo s incriminating papers have been found on him - but Carlo can go free, to save Flanders. A shot is fired, and Posa falls. Quickly he explains that Elisabeth awaits Carlo at the Yuste cloister; he dies content, since by his death he secures the happy future of Spain. Philip enters, to return to Carlo his sword. A warning bell rings out; a crowd storms the prison, demanding the Prince. The tumult is quelled by the Grand Inquisitor, who orders the sacrilegious mob to fall on its knees before the King.

ACT IV

The Cloister at Yuste

Elisabeth invokes the spirit of the Emperor Charles: may he carry her prayers to the Eternal Throne. Carlo enters and declares that he is done with dreaming; now he will save Flanders. The two take a solemn farewell, hoping to meet in a better world: "And for ever! Farewell!" Philip and the Inquisitor have overheard them; the King delivers his son to the Inquisition. The gates of the Emperor s tomb open, and the Monk steps forth. He enfolds Carlo in his mantle and leads him into the cloister, recognized as Charles V by everyone present on stage.

Video
Evening:   Bolshoi Theatre Young Artists Opera Program Concert   Video
December 9, FR
Evening:   Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky)   Performance information
Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Composer: Ilya Demutsky
Choreographer: Yuri Possokhov
Director, Designer and Author of Libretto: Kirill Serebrennikov
Costume Designers: Elena Zaitseva, Kirill Serebrennikov
Music Durector: Anton Grishanin
The world premiere took place on 22 July 2015.
The first and the second parts are performed without intermission.
Running time: 2 hours 15 minutes.

Synopsis

Can it be that wickedness is so attractive?..
Pechorin"s diary

BELA

1.
Prologue
Pechorin alone.
When I saw Bela in my own house; when, for the first time, I held her on my knee and kissed her black locks, I, fool that I was, thought that she was an angel sent to me by sympathetic fate... Again I was mistaken; the love of a savage is little better than that of your lady of quality, the barbaric ignorance and simplicity of the one weary you as much as the coquetry of the other. I am not saying that I do not love her still; I am grateful to her for a few fairly sweet moments; I would give my life for her - only I am bored with her... Whether I am a fool or a villain I know not; but this is certain, I am also most deserving of pity - perhaps more than she...
Bela"s funerals.
Muezzin"s exequial cant and a voice of a Russian wailer are heard.
How tiresome... I went away to order a coffin. Should I have erected a cross? No, a cross would not have done!..
...After all, she was not a Christian.

2.
Celebration.
Mountaneers, Pechorin, Kazbich.

Bela appears.
"What was it she sang - do you remember?"
"It went like this, I fancy: "Handsome, they say, are our young horsemen, and the tunics they wear are garnished with silver; but handsomer still is the young Russian officer, and the lace on his tunic is wrought of gold. Like a poplar amongst them he stands, but in gardens of ours such trees will grow not nor bloom!"
"Well, now, what do you think of her?"
"Charming! What is her name?"
"Her name is Bela."
"Bela."
"It is a bad thing to interfere in other people"s quarrels. Wouldn"t it be better for us to clear off without loss of time?"
"Wait, though, and see how it will end!"
"Oh, as to that, it will be sure enough to end badly; it is always so with these Asiatics. Once let them get drunk on buza, and there"s certain to be bloodshed."
Pechorin abducts Bela.

3.
Bela at Pechorin"s.
She sits in the corner, muffled in her veil, and neither speaks nor looks up - timid as a wild chamois! I have hired the wife of our dukhan-keeper: she will look after Bela and accustom her to the idea that she belongs to me - for she shall belong to no one else!
No one!
Pechorin seduces Bela.
"Listen, my Peri, surely you know that you will have to be mine sooner or later - why, then, do you but torture me? Is it that you are in love with some Chechene? If so, I will let you go home at once. Or is it that I am utterly hateful to you? Or that your faith prohibits you from giving me a little of your love? Believe me, Allah is one and the same for all races; and, if he permits me to love you, why, then, should he prohibit you from requiting me by returning my love? Listen, my dear, good Bela! You see how I love you. I am ready to give up everything to make you cheerful once more. I want you to be happy, and, if you are going to be sad again, I shall die. Tell me, you will be more cheerful?"

Bela is happy.

Pechorin returns. He has lost interest in his abductee.
Bela"s heart is broken.

4.
Mountaneers. Kazbich. Bela"s death.
"I don"t want to die!.. It burns..."
"Where?"
"Here in my breast... Piercing... As a red-hot blade... Water, water!..
"Where is father?! Grisha... I want back to the mountains, back home...
"Grishaaa... Why don"t you love your janechka anymore?.. Is it because I am not a Christian? How terrible, Grisha... how terrible... our souls will not meet in the other world... in Paradise another woman will be your companion..."
"Do you want to be baptized?"
"No... I will die in the faith in which I was born... It is better now... Go to bed, Grisha... Kiss me, Grisha... I beg of you..."
Pechorin and the dead Bela. He is uncertain whether he should bury her as a Christian or as a Muslim.
The mountains of Caucasus are not moved by human pain.

TAMAN

1.
Pechorin arrives at Taman.
Taman is the nastiest little hole of all the seaports of Russia. I was all but starved there, to say nothing of having a narrow escape of being drowned. I arrived late at night by the post-car... The sentry, a Cossack from the Black Sea, hearing the jingle of the bell, cried out, sleepily, in his barbarous voice, "Who goes there?" An under-officer of Cossacks and a headborough came out. I explained that I was an officer bound for the active-service detachment on Government business, and I proceeded to demand official quarters. The headborough conducted us round the town. Whatever hut we drove up to we found to be occupied. The weather was cold; I had not slept for three nights; I was tired out, and I began to lose my temper.
"Take me somewhere or other, you scoundrel!" I cried; "to the devil himself, so long as there"s a place to put up at!"
"There is one other lodging," answered the headborough, scratching his head. "Only you won"t like it, sir. It is uncanny!"

2.
A mysterious house at the sea shore. The wind is blowing.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"You are the master"s son?"
"No."
"Who are you, then?
"An orphan - a poor boy."
"Has the mistress any children?"
"No, her daughter ran away and crossed the sea with a Tartar."
"Not a single icon to be seen on the wall - a bad sign!"
Undine appears.
Pechorin falls in love with the strange beauty.
Certainly never before had I seen a woman like her. She was by no means beautiful; but, as in other matters, I have my own prepossessions on the subject of beauty. There was a good deal of breeding in her... Breeding in women, as in horses, is a great thing...
Breeding is chiefly to be detected in the gait, in the hands and feet; the nose, in particular, is of the greatest significance. In Russia a straight nose is rarer than a small foot.
Undine disappears.
Alone, Pechorin falls asleep.

3.
Pechorin"s dream. March of uncanny creatures.
I confess that I have a violent prejudice against all blind, one-eyed, deaf, dumb, legless, armless, hunchbacked, and such-like people. I have observed that there is always a certain strange connection between a man"s exterior and his soul; as, if when the body loses a limb, the soul also loses some power of feeling.
Undine reappears. Seagulls cry.
Pechorin and Undine"s love duet.
"Tell me, my beauty, what were you doing on the roof to-day?"
"I was looking to see from what direction the wind was blowing."
"What did you want to know for?"
"Whence the wind blows comes happiness."
"Well? Were you invoking happiness with your song?"
"Where there is singing there is also happiness."
"But what if your song were to bring you sorrow?"
"Well, what then? Where things won"t be better, they will be worse; and from bad to good again is not far."
"And who taught you that song?"
"Nobody taught me; it comes into my head and I sing; whoever is to hear it, he will hear it, and whoever ought not to hear it, he will not understand it."
Undune lures Pechorin at sea.
"To-night, when everyone is asleep, go out to the shore."
"Follow me! Let us get into the boat."
"What is the meaning of this?"
"It means, it means that I love you!.."
"What do you want?.."
Undine tries to drown Pechorin. They struggle.
Pechorin manages to survive.

4.
Pechorin searches for Undine in vain.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"How come that you have a daughter?"
"I am deaf. I don"t hear you."
"You don"t have a daughter, do you?"
"I am deaf as a post."
"Now, then, you little blind devil. Tell me, where were you roaming with the bundle last night, eh?"
"Where did I go? I did not go anywhere... With the bundle?.. What bundle?"

5.
Seashore at night. Smugglers.
Arrival of Yanko, leader of smugglers and Undine"s lover.
Yanko, Undine, the Blind Boy.
"Yanko, all is lost! He saw us.. He will tell on us...
"Listen, you blind one... She is coming with me. It is impossible for her to remain here. Tell the old woman that it is time for her to die; she has been here a long time, and the line must be drawn somewhere. As for us, she will never see us any more."
"And I?.."
"What use have I for you?"
"Come on, Yanko..."
Undine and Yanko get away.
The Blind Boy and Pechorin remain alone.

Thank Heaven an opportunity of getting away presented itself in the morning, and I left Taman. What became of the old woman and the poor blind boy I know not. And, besides, what are the joys and sorrows of mankind to me - me, a travelling officer, and one, moreover, with an order for post-horses on Government business?

PRINCESS MARY

1.
Prologue - Pechorin"s solo
Yesterday I arrived at Pyatigorsk. I have engaged lodgings at the extreme end of the town, the highest part, at the foot of Mount Mashuk: during a storm the clouds will descend on to the roof of my dwelling. This morning at five o"clock, when I opened my window, the room was filled with the fragrance of the flowers growing in the modest little front-garden. Branches of bloom-laden bird-cherry trees peep in at my window, and now and again the breeze bestrews my writing-table with their white petals... Blithe is life in such a land! A feeling akin to rapture is diffused through all my veins. The air is pure and fresh, like the kiss of a child; the sun is bright, the sky is blue - what more could one possibly wish for? What need, in such a place as this, of passions, desires, regrets?..

2.
Watering-place society.
Medical treatment, exercises, water well.

Grushnitski arrives with the wounded soldiers.
Grushnitski and Pechorin meet.
"You are embittered against the whole human race?"
"And I have cause to be..."
"Oh, really?"

Mary"s arrival.
Pechorin understands that Grushnitski is in love with Mary.

I have never known a waist more voluptuous and supple! Her fresh breath touched my face; at times a lock of hair, becoming separated from its companions in the eddy of the waltz, glided over my burning cheek... She was out of breath, her eyes were dulled, her half-open lips were scarcely able to whisper the indispensable: "Merci, monsieur."

Vera"s appearance.

Has destiny brought us together again in the Caucasus, or has she come hither on purpose, knowing that she would meet me?.. There is not a man in the world over whom the past has acquired such a power as over me...

Pechorin and Vera.
"Vera!"
"I knew that you were here."
"We have not seen each other for a long time."
"A long time, and we have both changed in many ways."
"Consequently you love me no longer?.."
"I am married!.."
"Again? A few years ago, however, that reason also existed, but, nevertheless..."
"Perhaps you love your second husband?.. Or is he very jealous? What then? He is young, handsome and, I suppose, rich - which is the chief thing - and you are afraid?.."
"Tell me, do you find it very amusing to torture me? I ought to hate you. Since we have known each other, you have given me naught but suffering..."
"Perhaps, it is for that very reason that you have loved me; joys are forgotten, but sorrows never..."

Mary helps Grushnitski who has pretended he is wounded in order to attract her attention.
Pechorin mockers Grushnitski, and he becomes furious.

"Did you see? She is an angel, simply an angel!"
"Why?"
"Did you not see, then?"
"No. I saw her picking up your tumbler. If there had been an attendant there he would have done the same thing - and quicker too, in the hope of receiving a tip. It is quite easy, however, to understand that she pitied you; you made such a terrible grimace when you walked on the wounded foot."
"And can it be that seeing her, as you did, at that moment when her soul was shining in her eyes, you were not in the least affected?"
"No."

Pechorin and Mary remain alone with each other.
"I have heard, Princess, that although quite unacquainted with you, I have already had the misfortune to incur your displeasure... that you have considered me insolent. Can that possibly be true?"
"Would you like to confirm me in that opinion now?".
"If I had the audacity to insult you in any way, then allow me to have the still greater audacity to beg your pardon... And, indeed, I should very much like to prove to you that you are mistaken in regard to me..."

Mary falls under Pechorin"s spell.
Grushnitski is jealous.

3.
Gentlemen"s club. Grushnitski complains about Pechorin"s actions. He thinks Pechorin is going to conquer Mary for himself.

A ball commences.
Polonaise. Waltz. Polka.
Pechorin dances with Mary.
"I did not expect this from you."
"What?"
"You are going to dance the mazurka with her? She admitted it..."
"Well, what then? It is not a secret, is it?"
"Of course not... I ought to have expected such a thing from that chit - that flirt... I will have my revenge, though!"
"You should lay the blame on your cloak, or your epaulettes, but why accuse her? What fault is it of hers that she does not like you any longer?.."
"But why give me hopes?"
"Why did you hope? To desire and to strive after something - that I can understand! But who ever hopes?"
"You have won the wager, but not quite."
Quarrel between Grushnitski and Pechorin. Grushnitski challenges Pechorin.

4.
Vera"s letter.
Pechorin and Vera.

Vera (soprano):
I am writing to you in the full assurance that we shall never see each other again. A few years ago on parting with you I thought the same...
it has been Heaven"s will to try me a second time...
...I have not been able to endure the trial, my frail heart has again submitted to the well-known voice...
...you will not despise me for that - will you?
will you?
will you?
...We are parting for ever.
...you may be sure
that I shall never
love another

never

upon you
my soul has exhausted
all its treasure,
its tears
its hopes

...in your nature
there is
something peculiar
there is
something proud and mysterious...
in your voice
there is an invincible power

no one
can so constantly wish to be loved
in no one
is wickedness ever so attractive
no one"s
glance promises so much bliss...
bliss...
bliss...

no one
can better make use of his advantages
and no one
can be
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
as you...

5.
Pechorin and Grushnitski before the duel.
Each is contemplating his own thoughts.
Seconds appear. The duel is prepared.
Pechorin and Grushnitski swap their pistols.
The duel.
"Grushnitski! There is still time: recant your slander, and I will forgive you everything. You have not succeeded in making a fool of me; my self-esteem is satisfied. Remember - we were once friends..."
"Fire! I despise myself and I hate you. If you do not kill me I will lie in wait for you some night and cut your throat. There is not room on the earth for both of us..."
Fire.
Grushnitski is killed.

Vera appears.
Vera (soprano):
I almost fainted at the thought that you had to fight a duel to-day... it seemed to me that I should go mad...

...I am sure
that you remain alive

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

impossible...

|impossible...

impossible...

6.
Pechorin realizes that he has killed his friend.
Pangs of conscience.
Vera (soprano):
I have been sitting at the window
three hours now,
awaiting your return...
But you are alive, you cannot have died!..

Good-bye, good-bye!..
If I could be sure
that you will always remember me -
I no longer say love
- no,
only remember...
only remember...
only remember...
Mary appears.
Pechorin tells her that he doesn"t love her.
"Princess, you know that I have been making fun of you?.. You must despise me. Consequently, you cannot love me..."
"Oh, God!"
Mary is disgraced.

Pechorin, Mary, Vera.
"You do not love Mary, do you? You will not marry her? Listen, you must offer me that sacrifice. I have lost everything in the world for you..."

7.
Epilogue.
Pechorin. Pechorin. Pechorin.
And now... I often ask myself, as my thoughts wander back to the past: why did I not wish to tread that way, thrown open by destiny, where soft joys and ease of soul were awaiting me?.. No, I could never have become habituated to such a fate! I am like a sailor born and bred on the deck of a pirate brig: his soul has grown accustomed to storms and battles; but, once let him be cast upon the shore, and he chafes, he pines away, however invitingly the shady groves allure, however brightly shines the peaceful sun. The livelong day he paces the sandy shore, hearkens to the monotonous murmur of the onrushing waves, and gazes into the misty distance: lo! yonder, upon the pale line dividing the blue deep from the grey clouds, is there not glancing the longed-for sail, at first like the wing of a seagull, but little by little severing itself from the foam of the billows and, with even course, drawing nigh to the desert harbour?..

Video
December 10, SA
Matinée:   Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky)   Performance information
Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Composer: Ilya Demutsky
Choreographer: Yuri Possokhov
Director, Designer and Author of Libretto: Kirill Serebrennikov
Costume Designers: Elena Zaitseva, Kirill Serebrennikov
Music Durector: Anton Grishanin
The world premiere took place on 22 July 2015.
The first and the second parts are performed without intermission.
Running time: 2 hours 15 minutes.

Synopsis

Can it be that wickedness is so attractive?..
Pechorin"s diary

BELA

1.
Prologue
Pechorin alone.
When I saw Bela in my own house; when, for the first time, I held her on my knee and kissed her black locks, I, fool that I was, thought that she was an angel sent to me by sympathetic fate... Again I was mistaken; the love of a savage is little better than that of your lady of quality, the barbaric ignorance and simplicity of the one weary you as much as the coquetry of the other. I am not saying that I do not love her still; I am grateful to her for a few fairly sweet moments; I would give my life for her - only I am bored with her... Whether I am a fool or a villain I know not; but this is certain, I am also most deserving of pity - perhaps more than she...
Bela"s funerals.
Muezzin"s exequial cant and a voice of a Russian wailer are heard.
How tiresome... I went away to order a coffin. Should I have erected a cross? No, a cross would not have done!..
...After all, she was not a Christian.

2.
Celebration.
Mountaneers, Pechorin, Kazbich.

Bela appears.
"What was it she sang - do you remember?"
"It went like this, I fancy: "Handsome, they say, are our young horsemen, and the tunics they wear are garnished with silver; but handsomer still is the young Russian officer, and the lace on his tunic is wrought of gold. Like a poplar amongst them he stands, but in gardens of ours such trees will grow not nor bloom!"
"Well, now, what do you think of her?"
"Charming! What is her name?"
"Her name is Bela."
"Bela."
"It is a bad thing to interfere in other people"s quarrels. Wouldn"t it be better for us to clear off without loss of time?"
"Wait, though, and see how it will end!"
"Oh, as to that, it will be sure enough to end badly; it is always so with these Asiatics. Once let them get drunk on buza, and there"s certain to be bloodshed."
Pechorin abducts Bela.

3.
Bela at Pechorin"s.
She sits in the corner, muffled in her veil, and neither speaks nor looks up - timid as a wild chamois! I have hired the wife of our dukhan-keeper: she will look after Bela and accustom her to the idea that she belongs to me - for she shall belong to no one else!
No one!
Pechorin seduces Bela.
"Listen, my Peri, surely you know that you will have to be mine sooner or later - why, then, do you but torture me? Is it that you are in love with some Chechene? If so, I will let you go home at once. Or is it that I am utterly hateful to you? Or that your faith prohibits you from giving me a little of your love? Believe me, Allah is one and the same for all races; and, if he permits me to love you, why, then, should he prohibit you from requiting me by returning my love? Listen, my dear, good Bela! You see how I love you. I am ready to give up everything to make you cheerful once more. I want you to be happy, and, if you are going to be sad again, I shall die. Tell me, you will be more cheerful?"

Bela is happy.

Pechorin returns. He has lost interest in his abductee.
Bela"s heart is broken.

4.
Mountaneers. Kazbich. Bela"s death.
"I don"t want to die!.. It burns..."
"Where?"
"Here in my breast... Piercing... As a red-hot blade... Water, water!..
"Where is father?! Grisha... I want back to the mountains, back home...
"Grishaaa... Why don"t you love your janechka anymore?.. Is it because I am not a Christian? How terrible, Grisha... how terrible... our souls will not meet in the other world... in Paradise another woman will be your companion..."
"Do you want to be baptized?"
"No... I will die in the faith in which I was born... It is better now... Go to bed, Grisha... Kiss me, Grisha... I beg of you..."
Pechorin and the dead Bela. He is uncertain whether he should bury her as a Christian or as a Muslim.
The mountains of Caucasus are not moved by human pain.

TAMAN

1.
Pechorin arrives at Taman.
Taman is the nastiest little hole of all the seaports of Russia. I was all but starved there, to say nothing of having a narrow escape of being drowned. I arrived late at night by the post-car... The sentry, a Cossack from the Black Sea, hearing the jingle of the bell, cried out, sleepily, in his barbarous voice, "Who goes there?" An under-officer of Cossacks and a headborough came out. I explained that I was an officer bound for the active-service detachment on Government business, and I proceeded to demand official quarters. The headborough conducted us round the town. Whatever hut we drove up to we found to be occupied. The weather was cold; I had not slept for three nights; I was tired out, and I began to lose my temper.
"Take me somewhere or other, you scoundrel!" I cried; "to the devil himself, so long as there"s a place to put up at!"
"There is one other lodging," answered the headborough, scratching his head. "Only you won"t like it, sir. It is uncanny!"

2.
A mysterious house at the sea shore. The wind is blowing.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"You are the master"s son?"
"No."
"Who are you, then?
"An orphan - a poor boy."
"Has the mistress any children?"
"No, her daughter ran away and crossed the sea with a Tartar."
"Not a single icon to be seen on the wall - a bad sign!"
Undine appears.
Pechorin falls in love with the strange beauty.
Certainly never before had I seen a woman like her. She was by no means beautiful; but, as in other matters, I have my own prepossessions on the subject of beauty. There was a good deal of breeding in her... Breeding in women, as in horses, is a great thing...
Breeding is chiefly to be detected in the gait, in the hands and feet; the nose, in particular, is of the greatest significance. In Russia a straight nose is rarer than a small foot.
Undine disappears.
Alone, Pechorin falls asleep.

3.
Pechorin"s dream. March of uncanny creatures.
I confess that I have a violent prejudice against all blind, one-eyed, deaf, dumb, legless, armless, hunchbacked, and such-like people. I have observed that there is always a certain strange connection between a man"s exterior and his soul; as, if when the body loses a limb, the soul also loses some power of feeling.
Undine reappears. Seagulls cry.
Pechorin and Undine"s love duet.
"Tell me, my beauty, what were you doing on the roof to-day?"
"I was looking to see from what direction the wind was blowing."
"What did you want to know for?"
"Whence the wind blows comes happiness."
"Well? Were you invoking happiness with your song?"
"Where there is singing there is also happiness."
"But what if your song were to bring you sorrow?"
"Well, what then? Where things won"t be better, they will be worse; and from bad to good again is not far."
"And who taught you that song?"
"Nobody taught me; it comes into my head and I sing; whoever is to hear it, he will hear it, and whoever ought not to hear it, he will not understand it."
Undune lures Pechorin at sea.
"To-night, when everyone is asleep, go out to the shore."
"Follow me! Let us get into the boat."
"What is the meaning of this?"
"It means, it means that I love you!.."
"What do you want?.."
Undine tries to drown Pechorin. They struggle.
Pechorin manages to survive.

4.
Pechorin searches for Undine in vain.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"How come that you have a daughter?"
"I am deaf. I don"t hear you."
"You don"t have a daughter, do you?"
"I am deaf as a post."
"Now, then, you little blind devil. Tell me, where were you roaming with the bundle last night, eh?"
"Where did I go? I did not go anywhere... With the bundle?.. What bundle?"

5.
Seashore at night. Smugglers.
Arrival of Yanko, leader of smugglers and Undine"s lover.
Yanko, Undine, the Blind Boy.
"Yanko, all is lost! He saw us.. He will tell on us...
"Listen, you blind one... She is coming with me. It is impossible for her to remain here. Tell the old woman that it is time for her to die; she has been here a long time, and the line must be drawn somewhere. As for us, she will never see us any more."
"And I?.."
"What use have I for you?"
"Come on, Yanko..."
Undine and Yanko get away.
The Blind Boy and Pechorin remain alone.

Thank Heaven an opportunity of getting away presented itself in the morning, and I left Taman. What became of the old woman and the poor blind boy I know not. And, besides, what are the joys and sorrows of mankind to me - me, a travelling officer, and one, moreover, with an order for post-horses on Government business?

PRINCESS MARY

1.
Prologue - Pechorin"s solo
Yesterday I arrived at Pyatigorsk. I have engaged lodgings at the extreme end of the town, the highest part, at the foot of Mount Mashuk: during a storm the clouds will descend on to the roof of my dwelling. This morning at five o"clock, when I opened my window, the room was filled with the fragrance of the flowers growing in the modest little front-garden. Branches of bloom-laden bird-cherry trees peep in at my window, and now and again the breeze bestrews my writing-table with their white petals... Blithe is life in such a land! A feeling akin to rapture is diffused through all my veins. The air is pure and fresh, like the kiss of a child; the sun is bright, the sky is blue - what more could one possibly wish for? What need, in such a place as this, of passions, desires, regrets?..

2.
Watering-place society.
Medical treatment, exercises, water well.

Grushnitski arrives with the wounded soldiers.
Grushnitski and Pechorin meet.
"You are embittered against the whole human race?"
"And I have cause to be..."
"Oh, really?"

Mary"s arrival.
Pechorin understands that Grushnitski is in love with Mary.

I have never known a waist more voluptuous and supple! Her fresh breath touched my face; at times a lock of hair, becoming separated from its companions in the eddy of the waltz, glided over my burning cheek... She was out of breath, her eyes were dulled, her half-open lips were scarcely able to whisper the indispensable: "Merci, monsieur."

Vera"s appearance.

Has destiny brought us together again in the Caucasus, or has she come hither on purpose, knowing that she would meet me?.. There is not a man in the world over whom the past has acquired such a power as over me...

Pechorin and Vera.
"Vera!"
"I knew that you were here."
"We have not seen each other for a long time."
"A long time, and we have both changed in many ways."
"Consequently you love me no longer?.."
"I am married!.."
"Again? A few years ago, however, that reason also existed, but, nevertheless..."
"Perhaps you love your second husband?.. Or is he very jealous? What then? He is young, handsome and, I suppose, rich - which is the chief thing - and you are afraid?.."
"Tell me, do you find it very amusing to torture me? I ought to hate you. Since we have known each other, you have given me naught but suffering..."
"Perhaps, it is for that very reason that you have loved me; joys are forgotten, but sorrows never..."

Mary helps Grushnitski who has pretended he is wounded in order to attract her attention.
Pechorin mockers Grushnitski, and he becomes furious.

"Did you see? She is an angel, simply an angel!"
"Why?"
"Did you not see, then?"
"No. I saw her picking up your tumbler. If there had been an attendant there he would have done the same thing - and quicker too, in the hope of receiving a tip. It is quite easy, however, to understand that she pitied you; you made such a terrible grimace when you walked on the wounded foot."
"And can it be that seeing her, as you did, at that moment when her soul was shining in her eyes, you were not in the least affected?"
"No."

Pechorin and Mary remain alone with each other.
"I have heard, Princess, that although quite unacquainted with you, I have already had the misfortune to incur your displeasure... that you have considered me insolent. Can that possibly be true?"
"Would you like to confirm me in that opinion now?".
"If I had the audacity to insult you in any way, then allow me to have the still greater audacity to beg your pardon... And, indeed, I should very much like to prove to you that you are mistaken in regard to me..."

Mary falls under Pechorin"s spell.
Grushnitski is jealous.

3.
Gentlemen"s club. Grushnitski complains about Pechorin"s actions. He thinks Pechorin is going to conquer Mary for himself.

A ball commences.
Polonaise. Waltz. Polka.
Pechorin dances with Mary.
"I did not expect this from you."
"What?"
"You are going to dance the mazurka with her? She admitted it..."
"Well, what then? It is not a secret, is it?"
"Of course not... I ought to have expected such a thing from that chit - that flirt... I will have my revenge, though!"
"You should lay the blame on your cloak, or your epaulettes, but why accuse her? What fault is it of hers that she does not like you any longer?.."
"But why give me hopes?"
"Why did you hope? To desire and to strive after something - that I can understand! But who ever hopes?"
"You have won the wager, but not quite."
Quarrel between Grushnitski and Pechorin. Grushnitski challenges Pechorin.

4.
Vera"s letter.
Pechorin and Vera.

Vera (soprano):
I am writing to you in the full assurance that we shall never see each other again. A few years ago on parting with you I thought the same...
it has been Heaven"s will to try me a second time...
...I have not been able to endure the trial, my frail heart has again submitted to the well-known voice...
...you will not despise me for that - will you?
will you?
will you?
...We are parting for ever.
...you may be sure
that I shall never
love another

never

upon you
my soul has exhausted
all its treasure,
its tears
its hopes

...in your nature
there is
something peculiar
there is
something proud and mysterious...
in your voice
there is an invincible power

no one
can so constantly wish to be loved
in no one
is wickedness ever so attractive
no one"s
glance promises so much bliss...
bliss...
bliss...

no one
can better make use of his advantages
and no one
can be
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
as you...

5.
Pechorin and Grushnitski before the duel.
Each is contemplating his own thoughts.
Seconds appear. The duel is prepared.
Pechorin and Grushnitski swap their pistols.
The duel.
"Grushnitski! There is still time: recant your slander, and I will forgive you everything. You have not succeeded in making a fool of me; my self-esteem is satisfied. Remember - we were once friends..."
"Fire! I despise myself and I hate you. If you do not kill me I will lie in wait for you some night and cut your throat. There is not room on the earth for both of us..."
Fire.
Grushnitski is killed.

Vera appears.
Vera (soprano):
I almost fainted at the thought that you had to fight a duel to-day... it seemed to me that I should go mad...

...I am sure
that you remain alive

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

impossible...

|impossible...

impossible...

6.
Pechorin realizes that he has killed his friend.
Pangs of conscience.
Vera (soprano):
I have been sitting at the window
three hours now,
awaiting your return...
But you are alive, you cannot have died!..

Good-bye, good-bye!..
If I could be sure
that you will always remember me -
I no longer say love
- no,
only remember...
only remember...
only remember...
Mary appears.
Pechorin tells her that he doesn"t love her.
"Princess, you know that I have been making fun of you?.. You must despise me. Consequently, you cannot love me..."
"Oh, God!"
Mary is disgraced.

Pechorin, Mary, Vera.
"You do not love Mary, do you? You will not marry her? Listen, you must offer me that sacrifice. I have lost everything in the world for you..."

7.
Epilogue.
Pechorin. Pechorin. Pechorin.
And now... I often ask myself, as my thoughts wander back to the past: why did I not wish to tread that way, thrown open by destiny, where soft joys and ease of soul were awaiting me?.. No, I could never have become habituated to such a fate! I am like a sailor born and bred on the deck of a pirate brig: his soul has grown accustomed to storms and battles; but, once let him be cast upon the shore, and he chafes, he pines away, however invitingly the shady groves allure, however brightly shines the peaceful sun. The livelong day he paces the sandy shore, hearkens to the monotonous murmur of the onrushing waves, and gazes into the misty distance: lo! yonder, upon the pale line dividing the blue deep from the grey clouds, is there not glancing the longed-for sail, at first like the wing of a seagull, but little by little severing itself from the foam of the billows and, with even course, drawing nigh to the desert harbour?..

Video
Evening:   Don Carlo (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi). Hibla Gerzmava   Performance information
Don Carlo (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi). Hibla Gerzmava - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in four acts
Music Director: Vassily Sinaisky
Stage Director: Adrian Noble
Set Designer: Tobias Hoheisel
Costume Designer: Moritz Junge
Lighting Designer: Jean Kalman
Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Permiered on December 17, 2013

In Honor of Giuseppe Verdi Bicentennial

SYNOPSIS

In 1556, the Emperor Charles V abdicated, celebrated his own funeral and retired to the monastery of San Jeronimo at Yuste. His son Philip II is now on the throne of Spain. To seal the peace between France and Spain after a long war, Philip marries Elisabeth of Valois, the daughter of Henry II, the French King, who has long been betrothed to his son Don Carlo.

ACT I

Scene 1
The cloister of the Yuste monastery

A Monk prays before the gates of the tomb of Charles V. Carlo starts at the sound of the voice - is this his grandfather, the Emperorn
Carlo s friend Rodrigo, the Marquis of Posa, joins him, and advises him to conquer his sorrow caused by losing his bride by a noble enterprise - that of freeing Flanders. The two vow to live and die together.

Scene 2
Outside the Yuste monastery gates

Outside the monastery, which no woman but the Queen may enter, her ladies while away the time with the song Princess Eboli sings.
The Queen enters, followed by Posa, who brings Elisabeth a letter from her mother and, under cover of the letter, a note from Carlo. While Eboli and Posa chat about the latest Paris fashions, Elisabeth reads the note, which tells her to trust Posa. In two broad strophes, Posa urges Elisabeth grant Carlo an interview, while Eboli (in asides) reveals her love for Carlo, and her hope that he loves her. Dismissing her ladies, Elisabeth consents to Posa s request. Carlo, at first controlled, asks Elisabeth to obtain the King s permission that he should leave for Flanders, but then his emotions overcome him and he falls to the ground in a swoon. On recovering, he clasps Elisabeth in his arms, defying the world. But she exclaims, "Then smite your father. Come stained with his murder, to lead your mother to the altar." Carlo runs off in despair.
Philip enters, angry to find the Queen unattended. Coldly he orders the lady-in-waiting who should have been with her to return to France. Elisabeth consoles her. The company leaves, but Philip orders Posa to remain: has he no favour to ask forn "Nothing for me," replies the Marquis, "but for others"; and, invited to speak freely, he describes the terror and destruction being wrought in Flanders. "At this bloody price," says Philip, "I have paid for the peace of the world." "The peace of a graveyard," Posa replies: one word from Philip could change the world and set people free. The King, struck by Posa s fearless honesty, confides to him his suspicions about his wife and his son, and appoints him his personal counsellor, but bids him beware the Grand Inquisitor.

ACT II

Scene 1
The Queen s gardens

Carlo enters, reading a note of midnight assignation which he believes has come from Elisabeth. When Eboli (who wrote the note) enters, masked, Carlo mistakes her for Elisabeth, and pours out his love. Too late, the mistake is revealed, and Eboli guesses his secret. Posa enters and tries to silence her, but in a tense trio she bids them beware the fury of a woman scorned. Posa asks Carlo to entrust to him any incriminating papers he may be carrying, and after a moment s hesitation - can he trust the King s new favouriten - Carlo does so.

Scene 2
A large square before the Basilica of Nuestra Senora de Atocha

The people gather to acclaim their King. Monks escort some Inquisition victims across the square; a splendid auto da fe, or public burning of heretics, is among the attractions of the day. Philip appears from the church and swears solemnly to serve God with fire and the sword. Suddenly a group of men cast themselves at his feet, and Carlo, who has led them there, announces that they are deputies from Flanders. The Flemings break into an eloquent plea for their country. Philip orders them to be taken away. All - except the monks - urge him to show mercy. At the close of the huge ensemble, Carlo asks his father to send him to Flanders as regent, and when Philip refuses, draws his sword on the King. No one dares to disarm him, until Posa steps forward. The King rewards Posa by making him a Duke, and the festive chorus is resumed.

ACT III

Scene 1
The King s study

Philip is alone in his study and reflects gloomily on his loveless, careworn life. The Grand Inquisitor is announced. Philip doubts whether he will be forgiven if he condemns his son to death; the Inquisitor demands that Posa should be handed over to the Inquisition. Philip refuses. The Inquisitor declares that Philip himself is in danger of being summoned before the Inquisition and leaves.
Elisabeth rushes in, distressed that her jewel casket has been stolen. Philip, who has it, opens it and draws out a portrait of Carlo. Elisabeth reminds him that she was once betrothed to the Prince, but he calls her an adulterous wife. She swoons. Eboli and Posa enter, and in a quartet Philip curses his unworthy suspicions, Eboli expresses her regret (for it was she who stole the casket), Posa decides that the time has come for him to take action, and Elisabeth, reviving, laments her unhappy life in this friendless country.
The two women are left alone. Eboli confesses that, drive by jealousy, she denounced Elisabeth to the King. At Eboli s further confession, that she has been Philip s mistress, Elisabeth tells her to choose, the following day, between exile and the veil, and leaves. Eboli curses the gift of fatal beauty that has caused her ruin. Her thoughts turn to Carlo, and she resolves to save him during the one day this is left to her.

Scene 2
Don Carlo s prison

Posa comes to bid Carlo farewell; he is marked for death, since Carlo s incriminating papers have been found on him - but Carlo can go free, to save Flanders. A shot is fired, and Posa falls. Quickly he explains that Elisabeth awaits Carlo at the Yuste cloister; he dies content, since by his death he secures the happy future of Spain. Philip enters, to return to Carlo his sword. A warning bell rings out; a crowd storms the prison, demanding the Prince. The tumult is quelled by the Grand Inquisitor, who orders the sacrilegious mob to fall on its knees before the King.

ACT IV

The Cloister at Yuste
Elisabeth invokes the spirit of the Emperor Charles: may he carry her prayers to the Eternal Throne. Carlo enters and declares that he is done with dreaming; now he will save Flanders. The two take a solemn farewell, hoping to meet in a better world: "And for ever! Farewell!" Philip and the Inquisitor have overheard them; the King delivers his son to the Inquisition. The gates of the Emperor s tomb open, and the Monk steps forth. He enfolds Carlo in his mantle and leads him into the cloister, recognized as Charles V by everyone present on stage.

Video
Evening:   Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky)   Performance information
Hero of Our Time (Ballet by Ilya Demutsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Composer: Ilya Demutsky
Choreographer: Yuri Possokhov
Director, Designer and Author of Libretto: Kirill Serebrennikov
Costume Designers: Elena Zaitseva, Kirill Serebrennikov
Music Durector: Anton Grishanin
The world premiere took place on 22 July 2015.
The first and the second parts are performed without intermission.
Running time: 2 hours 15 minutes.

Synopsis

Can it be that wickedness is so attractive?..
Pechorin"s diary

BELA

1.
Prologue
Pechorin alone.
When I saw Bela in my own house; when, for the first time, I held her on my knee and kissed her black locks, I, fool that I was, thought that she was an angel sent to me by sympathetic fate... Again I was mistaken; the love of a savage is little better than that of your lady of quality, the barbaric ignorance and simplicity of the one weary you as much as the coquetry of the other. I am not saying that I do not love her still; I am grateful to her for a few fairly sweet moments; I would give my life for her - only I am bored with her... Whether I am a fool or a villain I know not; but this is certain, I am also most deserving of pity - perhaps more than she...
Bela"s funerals.
Muezzin"s exequial cant and a voice of a Russian wailer are heard.
How tiresome... I went away to order a coffin. Should I have erected a cross? No, a cross would not have done!..
...After all, she was not a Christian.

2.
Celebration.
Mountaneers, Pechorin, Kazbich.

Bela appears.
"What was it she sang - do you remember?"
"It went like this, I fancy: "Handsome, they say, are our young horsemen, and the tunics they wear are garnished with silver; but handsomer still is the young Russian officer, and the lace on his tunic is wrought of gold. Like a poplar amongst them he stands, but in gardens of ours such trees will grow not nor bloom!"
"Well, now, what do you think of her?"
"Charming! What is her name?"
"Her name is Bela."
"Bela."
"It is a bad thing to interfere in other people"s quarrels. Wouldn"t it be better for us to clear off without loss of time?"
"Wait, though, and see how it will end!"
"Oh, as to that, it will be sure enough to end badly; it is always so with these Asiatics. Once let them get drunk on buza, and there"s certain to be bloodshed."
Pechorin abducts Bela.

3.
Bela at Pechorin"s.
She sits in the corner, muffled in her veil, and neither speaks nor looks up - timid as a wild chamois! I have hired the wife of our dukhan-keeper: she will look after Bela and accustom her to the idea that she belongs to me - for she shall belong to no one else!
No one!
Pechorin seduces Bela.
"Listen, my Peri, surely you know that you will have to be mine sooner or later - why, then, do you but torture me? Is it that you are in love with some Chechene? If so, I will let you go home at once. Or is it that I am utterly hateful to you? Or that your faith prohibits you from giving me a little of your love? Believe me, Allah is one and the same for all races; and, if he permits me to love you, why, then, should he prohibit you from requiting me by returning my love? Listen, my dear, good Bela! You see how I love you. I am ready to give up everything to make you cheerful once more. I want you to be happy, and, if you are going to be sad again, I shall die. Tell me, you will be more cheerful?"

Bela is happy.

Pechorin returns. He has lost interest in his abductee.
Bela"s heart is broken.

4.
Mountaneers. Kazbich. Bela"s death.
"I don"t want to die!.. It burns..."
"Where?"
"Here in my breast... Piercing... As a red-hot blade... Water, water!..
"Where is father?! Grisha... I want back to the mountains, back home...
"Grishaaa... Why don"t you love your janechka anymore?.. Is it because I am not a Christian? How terrible, Grisha... how terrible... our souls will not meet in the other world... in Paradise another woman will be your companion..."
"Do you want to be baptized?"
"No... I will die in the faith in which I was born... It is better now... Go to bed, Grisha... Kiss me, Grisha... I beg of you..."
Pechorin and the dead Bela. He is uncertain whether he should bury her as a Christian or as a Muslim.
The mountains of Caucasus are not moved by human pain.

TAMAN

1.
Pechorin arrives at Taman.
Taman is the nastiest little hole of all the seaports of Russia. I was all but starved there, to say nothing of having a narrow escape of being drowned. I arrived late at night by the post-car... The sentry, a Cossack from the Black Sea, hearing the jingle of the bell, cried out, sleepily, in his barbarous voice, "Who goes there?" An under-officer of Cossacks and a headborough came out. I explained that I was an officer bound for the active-service detachment on Government business, and I proceeded to demand official quarters. The headborough conducted us round the town. Whatever hut we drove up to we found to be occupied. The weather was cold; I had not slept for three nights; I was tired out, and I began to lose my temper.
"Take me somewhere or other, you scoundrel!" I cried; "to the devil himself, so long as there"s a place to put up at!"
"There is one other lodging," answered the headborough, scratching his head. "Only you won"t like it, sir. It is uncanny!"

2.
A mysterious house at the sea shore. The wind is blowing.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"You are the master"s son?"
"No."
"Who are you, then?
"An orphan - a poor boy."
"Has the mistress any children?"
"No, her daughter ran away and crossed the sea with a Tartar."
"Not a single icon to be seen on the wall - a bad sign!"
Undine appears.
Pechorin falls in love with the strange beauty.
Certainly never before had I seen a woman like her. She was by no means beautiful; but, as in other matters, I have my own prepossessions on the subject of beauty. There was a good deal of breeding in her... Breeding in women, as in horses, is a great thing...
Breeding is chiefly to be detected in the gait, in the hands and feet; the nose, in particular, is of the greatest significance. In Russia a straight nose is rarer than a small foot.
Undine disappears.
Alone, Pechorin falls asleep.

3.
Pechorin"s dream. March of uncanny creatures.
I confess that I have a violent prejudice against all blind, one-eyed, deaf, dumb, legless, armless, hunchbacked, and such-like people. I have observed that there is always a certain strange connection between a man"s exterior and his soul; as, if when the body loses a limb, the soul also loses some power of feeling.
Undine reappears. Seagulls cry.
Pechorin and Undine"s love duet.
"Tell me, my beauty, what were you doing on the roof to-day?"
"I was looking to see from what direction the wind was blowing."
"What did you want to know for?"
"Whence the wind blows comes happiness."
"Well? Were you invoking happiness with your song?"
"Where there is singing there is also happiness."
"But what if your song were to bring you sorrow?"
"Well, what then? Where things won"t be better, they will be worse; and from bad to good again is not far."
"And who taught you that song?"
"Nobody taught me; it comes into my head and I sing; whoever is to hear it, he will hear it, and whoever ought not to hear it, he will not understand it."
Undune lures Pechorin at sea.
"To-night, when everyone is asleep, go out to the shore."
"Follow me! Let us get into the boat."
"What is the meaning of this?"
"It means, it means that I love you!.."
"What do you want?.."
Undine tries to drown Pechorin. They struggle.
Pechorin manages to survive.

4.
Pechorin searches for Undine in vain.
Pechorin, the Old Woman, the Blind Boy.
"How come that you have a daughter?"
"I am deaf. I don"t hear you."
"You don"t have a daughter, do you?"
"I am deaf as a post."
"Now, then, you little blind devil. Tell me, where were you roaming with the bundle last night, eh?"
"Where did I go? I did not go anywhere... With the bundle?.. What bundle?"

5.
Seashore at night. Smugglers.
Arrival of Yanko, leader of smugglers and Undine"s lover.
Yanko, Undine, the Blind Boy.
"Yanko, all is lost! He saw us.. He will tell on us...
"Listen, you blind one... She is coming with me. It is impossible for her to remain here. Tell the old woman that it is time for her to die; she has been here a long time, and the line must be drawn somewhere. As for us, she will never see us any more."
"And I?.."
"What use have I for you?"
"Come on, Yanko..."
Undine and Yanko get away.
The Blind Boy and Pechorin remain alone.

Thank Heaven an opportunity of getting away presented itself in the morning, and I left Taman. What became of the old woman and the poor blind boy I know not. And, besides, what are the joys and sorrows of mankind to me - me, a travelling officer, and one, moreover, with an order for post-horses on Government business?

PRINCESS MARY

1.
Prologue - Pechorin"s solo
Yesterday I arrived at Pyatigorsk. I have engaged lodgings at the extreme end of the town, the highest part, at the foot of Mount Mashuk: during a storm the clouds will descend on to the roof of my dwelling. This morning at five o"clock, when I opened my window, the room was filled with the fragrance of the flowers growing in the modest little front-garden. Branches of bloom-laden bird-cherry trees peep in at my window, and now and again the breeze bestrews my writing-table with their white petals... Blithe is life in such a land! A feeling akin to rapture is diffused through all my veins. The air is pure and fresh, like the kiss of a child; the sun is bright, the sky is blue - what more could one possibly wish for? What need, in such a place as this, of passions, desires, regrets?..

2.
Watering-place society.
Medical treatment, exercises, water well.

Grushnitski arrives with the wounded soldiers.
Grushnitski and Pechorin meet.
"You are embittered against the whole human race?"
"And I have cause to be..."
"Oh, really?"

Mary"s arrival.
Pechorin understands that Grushnitski is in love with Mary.

I have never known a waist more voluptuous and supple! Her fresh breath touched my face; at times a lock of hair, becoming separated from its companions in the eddy of the waltz, glided over my burning cheek... She was out of breath, her eyes were dulled, her half-open lips were scarcely able to whisper the indispensable: "Merci, monsieur."

Vera"s appearance.

Has destiny brought us together again in the Caucasus, or has she come hither on purpose, knowing that she would meet me?.. There is not a man in the world over whom the past has acquired such a power as over me...

Pechorin and Vera.
"Vera!"
"I knew that you were here."
"We have not seen each other for a long time."
"A long time, and we have both changed in many ways."
"Consequently you love me no longer?.."
"I am married!.."
"Again? A few years ago, however, that reason also existed, but, nevertheless..."
"Perhaps you love your second husband?.. Or is he very jealous? What then? He is young, handsome and, I suppose, rich - which is the chief thing - and you are afraid?.."
"Tell me, do you find it very amusing to torture me? I ought to hate you. Since we have known each other, you have given me naught but suffering..."
"Perhaps, it is for that very reason that you have loved me; joys are forgotten, but sorrows never..."

Mary helps Grushnitski who has pretended he is wounded in order to attract her attention.
Pechorin mockers Grushnitski, and he becomes furious.

"Did you see? She is an angel, simply an angel!"
"Why?"
"Did you not see, then?"
"No. I saw her picking up your tumbler. If there had been an attendant there he would have done the same thing - and quicker too, in the hope of receiving a tip. It is quite easy, however, to understand that she pitied you; you made such a terrible grimace when you walked on the wounded foot."
"And can it be that seeing her, as you did, at that moment when her soul was shining in her eyes, you were not in the least affected?"
"No."

Pechorin and Mary remain alone with each other.
"I have heard, Princess, that although quite unacquainted with you, I have already had the misfortune to incur your displeasure... that you have considered me insolent. Can that possibly be true?"
"Would you like to confirm me in that opinion now?".
"If I had the audacity to insult you in any way, then allow me to have the still greater audacity to beg your pardon... And, indeed, I should very much like to prove to you that you are mistaken in regard to me..."

Mary falls under Pechorin"s spell.
Grushnitski is jealous.

3.
Gentlemen"s club. Grushnitski complains about Pechorin"s actions. He thinks Pechorin is going to conquer Mary for himself.

A ball commences.
Polonaise. Waltz. Polka.
Pechorin dances with Mary.
"I did not expect this from you."
"What?"
"You are going to dance the mazurka with her? She admitted it..."
"Well, what then? It is not a secret, is it?"
"Of course not... I ought to have expected such a thing from that chit - that flirt... I will have my revenge, though!"
"You should lay the blame on your cloak, or your epaulettes, but why accuse her? What fault is it of hers that she does not like you any longer?.."
"But why give me hopes?"
"Why did you hope? To desire and to strive after something - that I can understand! But who ever hopes?"
"You have won the wager, but not quite."
Quarrel between Grushnitski and Pechorin. Grushnitski challenges Pechorin.

4.
Vera"s letter.
Pechorin and Vera.

Vera (soprano):
I am writing to you in the full assurance that we shall never see each other again. A few years ago on parting with you I thought the same...
it has been Heaven"s will to try me a second time...
...I have not been able to endure the trial, my frail heart has again submitted to the well-known voice...
...you will not despise me for that - will you?
will you?
will you?
...We are parting for ever.
...you may be sure
that I shall never
love another

never

upon you
my soul has exhausted
all its treasure,
its tears
its hopes

...in your nature
there is
something peculiar
there is
something proud and mysterious...
in your voice
there is an invincible power

no one
can so constantly wish to be loved
in no one
is wickedness ever so attractive
no one"s
glance promises so much bliss...
bliss...
bliss...

no one
can better make use of his advantages
and no one
can be
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
so truly unhappy
as you...

5.
Pechorin and Grushnitski before the duel.
Each is contemplating his own thoughts.
Seconds appear. The duel is prepared.
Pechorin and Grushnitski swap their pistols.
The duel.
"Grushnitski! There is still time: recant your slander, and I will forgive you everything. You have not succeeded in making a fool of me; my self-esteem is satisfied. Remember - we were once friends..."
"Fire! I despise myself and I hate you. If you do not kill me I will lie in wait for you some night and cut your throat. There is not room on the earth for both of us..."
Fire.
Grushnitski is killed.

Vera appears.
Vera (soprano):
I almost fainted at the thought that you had to fight a duel to-day... it seemed to me that I should go mad...

...I am sure
that you remain alive

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

it is impossible
that you should die, and I not with you

impossible...

|impossible...

impossible...

6.
Pechorin realizes that he has killed his friend.
Pangs of conscience.
Vera (soprano):
I have been sitting at the window
three hours now,
awaiting your return...
But you are alive, you cannot have died!..

Good-bye, good-bye!..
If I could be sure
that you will always remember me -
I no longer say love
- no,
only remember...
only remember...
only remember...
Mary appears.
Pechorin tells her that he doesn"t love her.
"Princess, you know that I have been making fun of you?.. You must despise me. Consequently, you cannot love me..."
"Oh, God!"
Mary is disgraced.

Pechorin, Mary, Vera.
"You do not love Mary, do you? You will not marry her? Listen, you must offer me that sacrifice. I have lost everything in the world for you..."

7.
Epilogue.
Pechorin. Pechorin. Pechorin.
And now... I often ask myself, as my thoughts wander back to the past: why did I not wish to tread that way, thrown open by destiny, where soft joys and ease of soul were awaiting me?.. No, I could never have become habituated to such a fate! I am like a sailor born and bred on the deck of a pirate brig: his soul has grown accustomed to storms and battles; but, once let him be cast upon the shore, and he chafes, he pines away, however invitingly the shady groves allure, however brightly shines the peaceful sun. The livelong day he paces the sandy shore, hearkens to the monotonous murmur of the onrushing waves, and gazes into the misty distance: lo! yonder, upon the pale line dividing the blue deep from the grey clouds, is there not glancing the longed-for sail, at first like the wing of a seagull, but little by little severing itself from the foam of the billows and, with even course, drawing nigh to the desert harbour?..

Video
December 11, SU
Matinée:   Don Carlos (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi)   Performance information
Don Carlos (Opera by Giuseppe Verdi) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in four acts
Music Director: Vassily Sinaisky
Stage Director: Adrian Noble
Set Designer: Tobias Hoheisel
Costume Designer: Moritz Junge
Lighting Designer: Jean Kalman
Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Permiered on December 17, 2013

In Honor of Giuseppe Verdi Bicentennial

SYNOPSIS

In 1556, the Emperor Charles V abdicated, celebrated his own funeral and retired to the monastery of San Jeronimo at Yuste. His son Philip II is now on the throne of Spain. To seal the peace between France and Spain after a long war, Philip marries Elisabeth of Valois, the daughter of Henry II, the French King, who has long been betrothed to his son Don Carlo.

ACT I

Scene 1
The cloister of the Yuste monastery

A Monk prays before the gates of the tomb of Charles V. Carlo starts at the sound of the voice - is this his grandfather, the Emperorn
Carlo s friend Rodrigo, the Marquis of Posa, joins him, and advises him to conquer his sorrow caused by losing his bride by a noble enterprise - that of freeing Flanders. The two vow to live and die together.

Scene 2
Outside the Yuste monastery gates

Outside the monastery, which no woman but the Queen may enter, her ladies while away the time with the song Princess Eboli sings.

The Queen enters, followed by Posa, who brings Elisabeth a letter from her mother and, under cover of the letter, a note from Carlo. While Eboli and Posa chat about the latest Paris fashions, Elisabeth reads the note, which tells her to trust Posa. In two broad strophes, Posa urges Elisabeth grant Carlo an interview, while Eboli (in asides) reveals her love for Carlo, and her hope that he loves her. Dismissing her ladies, Elisabeth consents to Posa s request. Carlo, at first controlled, asks Elisabeth to obtain the King s permission that he should leave for Flanders, but then his emotions overcome him and he falls to the ground in a swoon. On recovering, he clasps Elisabeth in his arms, defying the world. But she exclaims, "Then smite your father. Come stained with his murder, to lead your mother to the altar." Carlo runs off in despair.

Philip enters, angry to find the Queen unattended. Coldly he orders the lady-in-waiting who should have been with her to return to France. Elisabeth consoles her. The company leaves, but Philip orders Posa to remain: has he no favour to ask forn "Nothing for me," replies the Marquis, "but for others"; and, invited to speak freely, he describes the terror and destruction being wrought in Flanders. "At this bloody price," says Philip, "I have paid for the peace of the world." "The peace of a graveyard," Posa replies: one word from Philip could change the world and set people free. The King, struck by Posa s fearless honesty, confides to him his suspicions about his wife and his son, and appoints him his personal counsellor, but bids him beware the Grand Inquisitor.

ACT II

Scene 1
The Queen s gardens

Carlo enters, reading a note of midnight assignation which he believes has come from Elisabeth. When Eboli (who wrote the note) enters, masked, Carlo mistakes her for Elisabeth, and pours out his love. Too late, the mistake is revealed, and Eboli guesses his secret. Posa enters and tries to silence her, but in a tense trio she bids them beware the fury of a woman scorned. Posa asks Carlo to entrust to him any incriminating papers he may be carrying, and after a moment s hesitation - can he trust the King s new favouriten - Carlo does so.

Scene 2
A large square before the Basilica of Nuestra Senora de Atocha

The people gather to acclaim their King. Monks escort some Inquisition victims across the square; a splendid auto da fe, or public burning of heretics, is among the attractions of the day. Philip appears from the church and swears solemnly to serve God with fire and the sword. Suddenly a group of men cast themselves at his feet, and Carlo, who has led them there, announces that they are deputies from Flanders. The Flemings break into an eloquent plea for their country. Philip orders them to be taken away. All - except the monks - urge him to show mercy. At the close of the huge ensemble, Carlo asks his father to send him to Flanders as regent, and when Philip refuses, draws his sword on the King. No one dares to disarm him, until Posa steps forward. The King rewards Posa by making him a Duke, and the festive chorus is resumed.

ACT III

Scene 1
The King s study

Philip is alone in his study and reflects gloomily on his loveless, careworn life. The Grand Inquisitor is announced. Philip doubts whether he will be forgiven if he condemns his son to death; the Inquisitor demands that Posa should be handed over to the Inquisition. Philip refuses. The Inquisitor declares that Philip himself is in danger of being summoned before the Inquisition and leaves.

Elisabeth rushes in, distressed that her jewel casket has been stolen. Philip, who has it, opens it and draws out a portrait of Carlo. Elisabeth reminds him that she was once betrothed to the Prince, but he calls her an adulterous wife. She swoons. Eboli and Posa enter, and in a quartet Philip curses his unworthy suspicions, Eboli expresses her regret (for it was she who stole the casket), Posa decides that the time has come for him to take action, and Elisabeth, reviving, laments her unhappy life in this friendless country.

The two women are left alone. Eboli confesses that, drive by jealousy, she denounced Elisabeth to the King. At Eboli s further confession, that she has been Philip s mistress, Elisabeth tells her to choose, the following day, between exile and the veil, and leaves. Eboli curses the gift of fatal beauty that has caused her ruin. Her thoughts turn to Carlo, and she resolves to save him during the one day this is left to her.

Scene 2
Don Carlo s prison

Posa comes to bid Carlo farewell; he is marked for death, since Carlo s incriminating papers have been found on him - but Carlo can go free, to save Flanders. A shot is fired, and Posa falls. Quickly he explains that Elisabeth awaits Carlo at the Yuste cloister; he dies content, since by his death he secures the happy future of Spain. Philip enters, to return to Carlo his sword. A warning bell rings out; a crowd storms the prison, demanding the Prince. The tumult is quelled by the Grand Inquisitor, who orders the sacrilegious mob to fall on its knees before the King.

ACT IV

The Cloister at Yuste

Elisabeth invokes the spirit of the Emperor Charles: may he carry her prayers to the Eternal Throne. Carlo enters and declares that he is done with dreaming; now he will save Flanders. The two take a solemn farewell, hoping to meet in a better world: "And for ever! Farewell!" Philip and the Inquisitor have overheard them; the King delivers his son to the Inquisition. The gates of the Emperor s tomb open, and the Monk steps forth. He enfolds Carlo in his mantle and leads him into the cloister, recognized as Charles V by everyone present on stage.

Video
Evening:      Video
December 13, TU
Evening:   Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)   Performance information
Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym after Antonio Salvi s libretto based on Pierre Corneille s play "Pertharite, roi des Lombards"
Music Director: Christopher Moulds
Stage Director: Richard Jones
Set Designer: Jeremy Herbert
Costume Designer: Nicky Gillibrand
Lighting Designer: Mimi Jordan Sherin
Choreographer: Sarah Fahie
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Co-production with English National Opera.
Will be premiered at the Bolshoi Theatre on December 13, 2015.

SYNOPSIS

Bertarido"s throne has been usurped by Grimoaldo, following which Bertarido fled abroad, leaving behind his wife, Rodelinda, their son Flavio, and his sister Eduige. He has now returned in disguise, having circulated a false report of his own death. Meanwhile Grimoaldo, despite being betrothed to Eduige, seeks Rodelinda"s love.

Act I
Rodelinda mourns the supposed death of Bertarido. Grimoaldo offers her marriage. She rejects his proposal and rounds on him instead. His ally Garibaldo points out to him that matters will be helped if he breaks off his engagement to Eduige. This Grimoaldo immediately does. Alone, Garibaldo shamelessly reveals that he will pretend to love Eduige and use her as a pawn in his own bid for power, on which she has a claim.
Bertarido enters, in disguise. He contemplates the monument which has been erected to his memory, and wonders what has happened to Rodelinda. Unulfo joins him, but both men are forced to hide when Rodelinda and Flavio enter to visit the memorial to Bertarido. When he sees Rodelinda, Bertarido wants to end his wife"s grief by making himself known to her, but Unulfo restrains him.
Garibaldo threatens to kill Flavio unless Rodelinda consents to marry Grimoaldo. Rodelinda agrees to accept Grimoaldo. However, she warns Garibaldo that once she is again queen he will be executed.
Grimoaldo enters. He is delighted that Rodelinda will marry him and reassures Garibaldo that he has his protection. Bertarido believes Rodelinda is unfaithful. He refuses to allow Unulfo to tell Rodelinda that he is alive and decides instead to wait until she has pledged herself to Grimoaldo.

Act II
Garibaldo tells Eduige she has lost Grimoaldo to Rodelinda and should marry him instead. She still loves Grimoaldo. Eduige is horrified by Rodelinda"s consent to marry Grimoaldo. Her love for Grimoaldo, whom she helped to gain the throne, now switches to hate and she plans to take her revenge.
Rodelinda confirms to Grimoaldo that she will marry him, but one condition must be met: that he kill Flavio before her eyes. She cannot be a usurper"s wife and the mother of the lawful king at the same time. Rebuked by Unulfo for encouraging Grimoaldo to kill Flavio, Garibaldo rejects the idea of pity arguing that only through bloodshed can a usurper successfully rule. Unulfo realizes that Garibaldo will betray Grimoaldo as readily as he did Bertarido, and that Rodelinda is, in fact, true to her husband.
Bertarido laments the position in which he now finds himself. Eduige enters and recognizes him. She is pleased to learn that he only wants to rescue his wife and son, not regain his throne (to which she still aspires). Unulfo assures Bertarido that Rodelinda remains faithful to him and that the time has come for him to reveal his identity.
Rodelinda is told by Unulfo that Bertarido is alive. Husband and wife are reunited and he begs her forgiveness for ever doubting her constancy. When Grimoaldo discovers them together, he fails to recognize Bertarido and is appalled to find Rodelinda in the arms of a stranger. Bertarido declares his identity but Rodelinda, afraid for her husband"s safety, claims he is lying. Grimoaldo, uncertain whether the man is her lover or her husband, decides that he will die anyway and leaves the couple to a final parting.

Act III
Eduige gives Unulfo a key to the prison cell in which Bertarido is held. Meanwhile, Garibaldo urges Grimoaldo to execute the prisoner without delay whether or not he is Bertarido. Grimoaldo is unable to act.
Bertarido is bemoaning his fate when his thoughts are interrupted by the sound of a sword dropped into his cell. Hearing someone approaching the cell door, Bertarido assumes it to be his executioner, lashes out and wounds the intruder - who turns out to be Unulfo come to rescue him. Bertarido changes his clothes to disguise himself and he and Unulfo escape via a secret passage.
Eduige, Rodelinda and Flavio arrive to rescue Bertarido. When they discover only his old clothes and fresh blood they assume he has been killed. Rodelinda wishes that someone would kill her and end her sufferings.
While Unulfo goes off to fetch Rodelinda, Bertarido determines to be avenged on Grimoaldo. The usurper enters, tormented by his crimes and longing for a simpler life. He falls asleep. Garibaldo appears and, seizing his chance, attempts to kill Grimoaldo; but Bertarido steps forward from his hiding place and kills Garibaldo. Rodelinda enters and is astonished to find Bertarido alive. Unulfo and Eduige explain the rescue. In gratitude for saving his life, Grimoaldo restores the throne, Rodelinda and their son to Bertarido, and takes Eduige as his wife.

Video
Evening:      Video
December 14, WE
Evening:   The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky)   Performance information
The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Alexander Dargomyzhsky
Libretto by the composer after Alexander Pushkin"s play of the same name
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Victor Shilkrot
Costume Designer: Irena Belousova
Lighting Designer: Evgeny Vinogradov
Premiered on 11 March 2016
Presented with one interval

Synopsis

Act I

Scene One
Don Juan, banished from Madrid for killing the Commander de Solva, has secretly returned. Accompanied by his servant Leporello, he hides near a monastery outside Madrid. Remembering his past affairs, he plans to get in the city to continue his adventures. The Monk tells him that Dona Anna, the widow of the Commander, visits the cemetery every day. Don Juan sees Dona Anna and feels an urge to get to know her.

Scene Two
Laura is having a party; many of the guests are people she never met before. She entertains them with singing. One of the songs is based on a poem by Don Juan, Laura"s former lover. The quick-tempered Don Carlos gets enraged, which almost ruins the conspiring guests" plan. Laura resumes her singing, but it it clear to her that the guests did not come to hear her songs. Laura makes everyone but Don Carlos leave. Him she seduces and thus learns that there is a conspiracy against Don Juan. Presently Don Juan appears.
Don Carlos insists that the inevitable duel should take place on the spot. Don Juan kills Don Carlos. Laura shows Don Juan a list of conspirators. Their privacy is violated by the conspirators"s assault, but Don Juan manages to escape.

Act II

Don Juan hides in the monastery disguised as a hermit. Dona Anna comes there every day to visit her husband"s grave. Don Juan introduces himself to her as Don Diego. Dona Anna agrees to receive him at her place the next day. Leporello tries to warn his master by hinting that the Commander"s death was not forgiven and that the trap is set. Don Juan challenges his fate: he invites the Commander, an embodiment of the tyranny and total control, to join him on his next day"s rendezvous. Leporello begs forgiveness for his betrayal, because it is clear for him now that Don Juan knows it was he who brought the conspirators to Laura"s.

Act III

A room at Dona Anna"s. She spent a night with Don Juan, but now he has to leave her. Unable to conceal the truth any longer, he confesses that he killed her husband and that he loves her with all his heart. Dona Anna cannot hate him; instead she realizes that she loves him in return. Don Juan aspires for a new rendezvous, but the men of "the stone guest" have already tracked him down. not surrendering, Don Juan extends his hand to them as a token of love and freedom. They kill him.

Video Web link
December 15, TH
Evening:   Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)   Performance information
Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym after Antonio Salvi s libretto based on Pierre Corneille s play "Pertharite, roi des Lombards"
Music Director: Christopher Moulds
Stage Director: Richard Jones
Set Designer: Jeremy Herbert
Costume Designer: Nicky Gillibrand
Lighting Designer: Mimi Jordan Sherin
Choreographer: Sarah Fahie
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Co-production with English National Opera.
Will be premiered at the Bolshoi Theatre on December 13, 2015.

SYNOPSIS

Bertarido"s throne has been usurped by Grimoaldo, following which Bertarido fled abroad, leaving behind his wife, Rodelinda, their son Flavio, and his sister Eduige. He has now returned in disguise, having circulated a false report of his own death. Meanwhile Grimoaldo, despite being betrothed to Eduige, seeks Rodelinda"s love.

Act I
Rodelinda mourns the supposed death of Bertarido. Grimoaldo offers her marriage. She rejects his proposal and rounds on him instead. His ally Garibaldo points out to him that matters will be helped if he breaks off his engagement to Eduige. This Grimoaldo immediately does. Alone, Garibaldo shamelessly reveals that he will pretend to love Eduige and use her as a pawn in his own bid for power, on which she has a claim.
Bertarido enters, in disguise. He contemplates the monument which has been erected to his memory, and wonders what has happened to Rodelinda. Unulfo joins him, but both men are forced to hide when Rodelinda and Flavio enter to visit the memorial to Bertarido. When he sees Rodelinda, Bertarido wants to end his wife"s grief by making himself known to her, but Unulfo restrains him.
Garibaldo threatens to kill Flavio unless Rodelinda consents to marry Grimoaldo. Rodelinda agrees to accept Grimoaldo. However, she warns Garibaldo that once she is again queen he will be executed.
Grimoaldo enters. He is delighted that Rodelinda will marry him and reassures Garibaldo that he has his protection. Bertarido believes Rodelinda is unfaithful. He refuses to allow Unulfo to tell Rodelinda that he is alive and decides instead to wait until she has pledged herself to Grimoaldo.

Act II
Garibaldo tells Eduige she has lost Grimoaldo to Rodelinda and should marry him instead. She still loves Grimoaldo. Eduige is horrified by Rodelinda"s consent to marry Grimoaldo. Her love for Grimoaldo, whom she helped to gain the throne, now switches to hate and she plans to take her revenge.
Rodelinda confirms to Grimoaldo that she will marry him, but one condition must be met: that he kill Flavio before her eyes. She cannot be a usurper"s wife and the mother of the lawful king at the same time. Rebuked by Unulfo for encouraging Grimoaldo to kill Flavio, Garibaldo rejects the idea of pity arguing that only through bloodshed can a usurper successfully rule. Unulfo realizes that Garibaldo will betray Grimoaldo as readily as he did Bertarido, and that Rodelinda is, in fact, true to her husband.
Bertarido laments the position in which he now finds himself. Eduige enters and recognizes him. She is pleased to learn that he only wants to rescue his wife and son, not regain his throne (to which she still aspires). Unulfo assures Bertarido that Rodelinda remains faithful to him and that the time has come for him to reveal his identity.
Rodelinda is told by Unulfo that Bertarido is alive. Husband and wife are reunited and he begs her forgiveness for ever doubting her constancy. When Grimoaldo discovers them together, he fails to recognize Bertarido and is appalled to find Rodelinda in the arms of a stranger. Bertarido declares his identity but Rodelinda, afraid for her husband"s safety, claims he is lying. Grimoaldo, uncertain whether the man is her lover or her husband, decides that he will die anyway and leaves the couple to a final parting.

Act III
Eduige gives Unulfo a key to the prison cell in which Bertarido is held. Meanwhile, Garibaldo urges Grimoaldo to execute the prisoner without delay whether or not he is Bertarido. Grimoaldo is unable to act.
Bertarido is bemoaning his fate when his thoughts are interrupted by the sound of a sword dropped into his cell. Hearing someone approaching the cell door, Bertarido assumes it to be his executioner, lashes out and wounds the intruder - who turns out to be Unulfo come to rescue him. Bertarido changes his clothes to disguise himself and he and Unulfo escape via a secret passage.
Eduige, Rodelinda and Flavio arrive to rescue Bertarido. When they discover only his old clothes and fresh blood they assume he has been killed. Rodelinda wishes that someone would kill her and end her sufferings.
While Unulfo goes off to fetch Rodelinda, Bertarido determines to be avenged on Grimoaldo. The usurper enters, tormented by his crimes and longing for a simpler life. He falls asleep. Garibaldo appears and, seizing his chance, attempts to kill Grimoaldo; but Bertarido steps forward from his hiding place and kills Garibaldo. Rodelinda enters and is astonished to find Bertarido alive. Unulfo and Eduige explain the rescue. In gratitude for saving his life, Grimoaldo restores the throne, Rodelinda and their son to Bertarido, and takes Eduige as his wife.

Video
Evening:   Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov)   Performance information
Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in three acts.
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after scenario by Lidia Pashkova, based on medieval knight`s legends
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich (version of 2003)
Scenes in choreography by Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky used
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Mikhail Sokolov
Assistant Choreographer: Natalia Bessmertnova
Premiered on May 10, 2003.
Presented with two intervals.
Running time: 3 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Raymonda, the niece of the Countess Sybil de Daurice, а French noblewoman, is betrothed to Jean de Brienne.
De Brienne arrives at the castle. Не has come to bid farewell to Raymonda before leaving to go on а crusade led by the King of Hungary, Andrei II.
Raymonda says goodbye tо her beloved and the knight leaves the castle.
Night-time. Raymonda is carring into the enchanted garden of dreams. In her dreams Raymonda sees Jean de Brienne. The happy lovers are together again.
Suddenly Jean de Brienne disappears.
In his place Raymonda sees an Eastern knight whom she does not know. Не confronts her with а passionate declaration of his love. Raymonda is deeply perturbed and falls unconscious to the ground. The mirage vanishes.
Dawn breaks. Raymonda decides that the vision she had in the night is an omen.

Act II
Festivities are underway at the Dayrice castle.
Among the guests is the Saracen knight, Abderakhman, accompanied by а magnificent suite. Raymonda recognizes him to be the mysterious stranger of her dream. She is terrified. Abderakhman offers Raymonda power and riches in return for her hand and heart. Raymonda rejects Abderakhman. Enraged, Abderakhman tries to abduct her.
Suddenly knights appear. They have returned from the crusade. Jean de Brienne is among them.
King Andrei П suggests that Jean de Brienne and Abderakhman settle their diffеrences in single combat. Jean de Brienne gets the better of Abderakhman. The lovers are united.

Act III
King Andrei II blesses the marriage of Raymonda аnd Jеаn de Brienne. In honour of the King of Hungary, the wedding festivities are concluded by а big Hungarian dance.

Video
December 16, FR
Evening:   The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky)   Performance information
The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Alexander Dargomyzhsky
Libretto by the composer after Alexander Pushkin"s play of the same name
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Victor Shilkrot
Costume Designer: Irena Belousova
Lighting Designer: Evgeny Vinogradov
Premiered on 11 March 2016
Presented with one interval

Synopsis

Act I

Scene One
Don Juan, banished from Madrid for killing the Commander de Solva, has secretly returned. Accompanied by his servant Leporello, he hides near a monastery outside Madrid. Remembering his past affairs, he plans to get in the city to continue his adventures. The Monk tells him that Dona Anna, the widow of the Commander, visits the cemetery every day. Don Juan sees Dona Anna and feels an urge to get to know her.

Scene Two
Laura is having a party; many of the guests are people she never met before. She entertains them with singing. One of the songs is based on a poem by Don Juan, Laura"s former lover. The quick-tempered Don Carlos gets enraged, which almost ruins the conspiring guests" plan. Laura resumes her singing, but it it clear to her that the guests did not come to hear her songs. Laura makes everyone but Don Carlos leave. Him she seduces and thus learns that there is a conspiracy against Don Juan. Presently Don Juan appears.
Don Carlos insists that the inevitable duel should take place on the spot. Don Juan kills Don Carlos. Laura shows Don Juan a list of conspirators. Their privacy is violated by the conspirators"s assault, but Don Juan manages to escape.

Act II

Don Juan hides in the monastery disguised as a hermit. Dona Anna comes there every day to visit her husband"s grave. Don Juan introduces himself to her as Don Diego. Dona Anna agrees to receive him at her place the next day. Leporello tries to warn his master by hinting that the Commander"s death was not forgiven and that the trap is set. Don Juan challenges his fate: he invites the Commander, an embodiment of the tyranny and total control, to join him on his next day"s rendezvous. Leporello begs forgiveness for his betrayal, because it is clear for him now that Don Juan knows it was he who brought the conspirators to Laura"s.

Act III

A room at Dona Anna"s. She spent a night with Don Juan, but now he has to leave her. Unable to conceal the truth any longer, he confesses that he killed her husband and that he loves her with all his heart. Dona Anna cannot hate him; instead she realizes that she loves him in return. Don Juan aspires for a new rendezvous, but the men of "the stone guest" have already tracked him down. not surrendering, Don Juan extends his hand to them as a token of love and freedom. They kill him.

Video Web link
December 17, SA
Matinée:      Video
Matinée:   Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov)   Performance information
Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in three acts.
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after scenario by Lidia Pashkova, based on medieval knight`s legends
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich (version of 2003)
Scenes in choreography by Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky used
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Mikhail Sokolov
Assistant Choreographer: Natalia Bessmertnova
Premiered on May 10, 2003.
Presented with two intervals.
Running time: 3 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Raymonda, the niece of the Countess Sybil de Daurice, а French noblewoman, is betrothed to Jean de Brienne.
De Brienne arrives at the castle. Не has come to bid farewell to Raymonda before leaving to go on а crusade led by the King of Hungary, Andrei II.
Raymonda says goodbye tо her beloved and the knight leaves the castle.
Night-time. Raymonda is carring into the enchanted garden of dreams. In her dreams Raymonda sees Jean de Brienne. The happy lovers are together again.
Suddenly Jean de Brienne disappears.
In his place Raymonda sees an Eastern knight whom she does not know. Не confronts her with а passionate declaration of his love. Raymonda is deeply perturbed and falls unconscious to the ground. The mirage vanishes.
Dawn breaks. Raymonda decides that the vision she had in the night is an omen.

Act II
Festivities are underway at the Dayrice castle.
Among the guests is the Saracen knight, Abderakhman, accompanied by а magnificent suite. Raymonda recognizes him to be the mysterious stranger of her dream. She is terrified. Abderakhman offers Raymonda power and riches in return for her hand and heart. Raymonda rejects Abderakhman. Enraged, Abderakhman tries to abduct her.
Suddenly knights appear. They have returned from the crusade. Jean de Brienne is among them.
King Andrei П suggests that Jean de Brienne and Abderakhman settle their diffеrences in single combat. Jean de Brienne gets the better of Abderakhman. The lovers are united.

Act III
King Andrei II blesses the marriage of Raymonda аnd Jеаn de Brienne. In honour of the King of Hungary, the wedding festivities are concluded by а big Hungarian dance.

Video
Evening:      Video
Evening:   Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)   Performance information
Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym after Antonio Salvi s libretto based on Pierre Corneille s play "Pertharite, roi des Lombards"
Music Director: Christopher Moulds
Stage Director: Richard Jones
Set Designer: Jeremy Herbert
Costume Designer: Nicky Gillibrand
Lighting Designer: Mimi Jordan Sherin
Choreographer: Sarah Fahie
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Co-production with English National Opera.
Will be premiered at the Bolshoi Theatre on December 13, 2015.

SYNOPSIS

Bertarido"s throne has been usurped by Grimoaldo, following which Bertarido fled abroad, leaving behind his wife, Rodelinda, their son Flavio, and his sister Eduige. He has now returned in disguise, having circulated a false report of his own death. Meanwhile Grimoaldo, despite being betrothed to Eduige, seeks Rodelinda"s love.

Act I
Rodelinda mourns the supposed death of Bertarido. Grimoaldo offers her marriage. She rejects his proposal and rounds on him instead. His ally Garibaldo points out to him that matters will be helped if he breaks off his engagement to Eduige. This Grimoaldo immediately does. Alone, Garibaldo shamelessly reveals that he will pretend to love Eduige and use her as a pawn in his own bid for power, on which she has a claim.
Bertarido enters, in disguise. He contemplates the monument which has been erected to his memory, and wonders what has happened to Rodelinda. Unulfo joins him, but both men are forced to hide when Rodelinda and Flavio enter to visit the memorial to Bertarido. When he sees Rodelinda, Bertarido wants to end his wife"s grief by making himself known to her, but Unulfo restrains him.
Garibaldo threatens to kill Flavio unless Rodelinda consents to marry Grimoaldo. Rodelinda agrees to accept Grimoaldo. However, she warns Garibaldo that once she is again queen he will be executed.
Grimoaldo enters. He is delighted that Rodelinda will marry him and reassures Garibaldo that he has his protection. Bertarido believes Rodelinda is unfaithful. He refuses to allow Unulfo to tell Rodelinda that he is alive and decides instead to wait until she has pledged herself to Grimoaldo.

Act II
Garibaldo tells Eduige she has lost Grimoaldo to Rodelinda and should marry him instead. She still loves Grimoaldo. Eduige is horrified by Rodelinda"s consent to marry Grimoaldo. Her love for Grimoaldo, whom she helped to gain the throne, now switches to hate and she plans to take her revenge.
Rodelinda confirms to Grimoaldo that she will marry him, but one condition must be met: that he kill Flavio before her eyes. She cannot be a usurper"s wife and the mother of the lawful king at the same time. Rebuked by Unulfo for encouraging Grimoaldo to kill Flavio, Garibaldo rejects the idea of pity arguing that only through bloodshed can a usurper successfully rule. Unulfo realizes that Garibaldo will betray Grimoaldo as readily as he did Bertarido, and that Rodelinda is, in fact, true to her husband.
Bertarido laments the position in which he now finds himself. Eduige enters and recognizes him. She is pleased to learn that he only wants to rescue his wife and son, not regain his throne (to which she still aspires). Unulfo assures Bertarido that Rodelinda remains faithful to him and that the time has come for him to reveal his identity.
Rodelinda is told by Unulfo that Bertarido is alive. Husband and wife are reunited and he begs her forgiveness for ever doubting her constancy. When Grimoaldo discovers them together, he fails to recognize Bertarido and is appalled to find Rodelinda in the arms of a stranger. Bertarido declares his identity but Rodelinda, afraid for her husband"s safety, claims he is lying. Grimoaldo, uncertain whether the man is her lover or her husband, decides that he will die anyway and leaves the couple to a final parting.

Act III
Eduige gives Unulfo a key to the prison cell in which Bertarido is held. Meanwhile, Garibaldo urges Grimoaldo to execute the prisoner without delay whether or not he is Bertarido. Grimoaldo is unable to act.
Bertarido is bemoaning his fate when his thoughts are interrupted by the sound of a sword dropped into his cell. Hearing someone approaching the cell door, Bertarido assumes it to be his executioner, lashes out and wounds the intruder - who turns out to be Unulfo come to rescue him. Bertarido changes his clothes to disguise himself and he and Unulfo escape via a secret passage.
Eduige, Rodelinda and Flavio arrive to rescue Bertarido. When they discover only his old clothes and fresh blood they assume he has been killed. Rodelinda wishes that someone would kill her and end her sufferings.
While Unulfo goes off to fetch Rodelinda, Bertarido determines to be avenged on Grimoaldo. The usurper enters, tormented by his crimes and longing for a simpler life. He falls asleep. Garibaldo appears and, seizing his chance, attempts to kill Grimoaldo; but Bertarido steps forward from his hiding place and kills Garibaldo. Rodelinda enters and is astonished to find Bertarido alive. Unulfo and Eduige explain the rescue. In gratitude for saving his life, Grimoaldo restores the throne, Rodelinda and their son to Bertarido, and takes Eduige as his wife.

Video
Evening:   Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov)   Performance information
Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in three acts.
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after scenario by Lidia Pashkova, based on medieval knight`s legends
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich (version of 2003)
Scenes in choreography by Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky used
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Mikhail Sokolov
Assistant Choreographer: Natalia Bessmertnova
Premiered on May 10, 2003.
Presented with two intervals.
Running time: 3 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Raymonda, the niece of the Countess Sybil de Daurice, а French noblewoman, is betrothed to Jean de Brienne.
De Brienne arrives at the castle. Не has come to bid farewell to Raymonda before leaving to go on а crusade led by the King of Hungary, Andrei II.
Raymonda says goodbye tо her beloved and the knight leaves the castle.
Night-time. Raymonda is carring into the enchanted garden of dreams. In her dreams Raymonda sees Jean de Brienne. The happy lovers are together again.
Suddenly Jean de Brienne disappears.
In his place Raymonda sees an Eastern knight whom she does not know. Не confronts her with а passionate declaration of his love. Raymonda is deeply perturbed and falls unconscious to the ground. The mirage vanishes.
Dawn breaks. Raymonda decides that the vision she had in the night is an omen.

Act II
Festivities are underway at the Dayrice castle.
Among the guests is the Saracen knight, Abderakhman, accompanied by а magnificent suite. Raymonda recognizes him to be the mysterious stranger of her dream. She is terrified. Abderakhman offers Raymonda power and riches in return for her hand and heart. Raymonda rejects Abderakhman. Enraged, Abderakhman tries to abduct her.
Suddenly knights appear. They have returned from the crusade. Jean de Brienne is among them.
King Andrei П suggests that Jean de Brienne and Abderakhman settle their diffеrences in single combat. Jean de Brienne gets the better of Abderakhman. The lovers are united.

Act III
King Andrei II blesses the marriage of Raymonda аnd Jеаn de Brienne. In honour of the King of Hungary, the wedding festivities are concluded by а big Hungarian dance.

Video
December 18, SU
Matinée:      Video
Matinée:   The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky)   Performance information
The Stone Guest (Opera by Alexander Dargomyzhsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Alexander Dargomyzhsky
Libretto by the composer after Alexander Pushkin"s play of the same name
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Victor Shilkrot
Costume Designer: Irena Belousova
Lighting Designer: Evgeny Vinogradov
Premiered on 11 March 2016
Presented with one interval

Synopsis

Act I

Scene One
Don Juan, banished from Madrid for killing the Commander de Solva, has secretly returned. Accompanied by his servant Leporello, he hides near a monastery outside Madrid. Remembering his past affairs, he plans to get in the city to continue his adventures. The Monk tells him that Dona Anna, the widow of the Commander, visits the cemetery every day. Don Juan sees Dona Anna and feels an urge to get to know her.

Scene Two
Laura is having a party; many of the guests are people she never met before. She entertains them with singing. One of the songs is based on a poem by Don Juan, Laura"s former lover. The quick-tempered Don Carlos gets enraged, which almost ruins the conspiring guests" plan. Laura resumes her singing, but it it clear to her that the guests did not come to hear her songs. Laura makes everyone but Don Carlos leave. Him she seduces and thus learns that there is a conspiracy against Don Juan. Presently Don Juan appears.
Don Carlos insists that the inevitable duel should take place on the spot. Don Juan kills Don Carlos. Laura shows Don Juan a list of conspirators. Their privacy is violated by the conspirators"s assault, but Don Juan manages to escape.

Act II

Don Juan hides in the monastery disguised as a hermit. Dona Anna comes there every day to visit her husband"s grave. Don Juan introduces himself to her as Don Diego. Dona Anna agrees to receive him at her place the next day. Leporello tries to warn his master by hinting that the Commander"s death was not forgiven and that the trap is set. Don Juan challenges his fate: he invites the Commander, an embodiment of the tyranny and total control, to join him on his next day"s rendezvous. Leporello begs forgiveness for his betrayal, because it is clear for him now that Don Juan knows it was he who brought the conspirators to Laura"s.

Act III

A room at Dona Anna"s. She spent a night with Don Juan, but now he has to leave her. Unable to conceal the truth any longer, he confesses that he killed her husband and that he loves her with all his heart. Dona Anna cannot hate him; instead she realizes that she loves him in return. Don Juan aspires for a new rendezvous, but the men of "the stone guest" have already tracked him down. not surrendering, Don Juan extends his hand to them as a token of love and freedom. They kill him.

Video Web link
Evening:      Video
Evening:   Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov)   Performance information
Raymonda (Ballet by Alexander Glazunov) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in three acts.
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after scenario by Lidia Pashkova, based on medieval knight`s legends
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich (version of 2003)
Scenes in choreography by Marius Petipa and Alexander Gorsky used
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Mikhail Sokolov
Assistant Choreographer: Natalia Bessmertnova
Premiered on May 10, 2003.
Presented with two intervals.
Running time: 3 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Raymonda, the niece of the Countess Sybil de Daurice, а French noblewoman, is betrothed to Jean de Brienne.
De Brienne arrives at the castle. Не has come to bid farewell to Raymonda before leaving to go on а crusade led by the King of Hungary, Andrei II.
Raymonda says goodbye tо her beloved and the knight leaves the castle.
Night-time. Raymonda is carring into the enchanted garden of dreams. In her dreams Raymonda sees Jean de Brienne. The happy lovers are together again.
Suddenly Jean de Brienne disappears.
In his place Raymonda sees an Eastern knight whom she does not know. Не confronts her with а passionate declaration of his love. Raymonda is deeply perturbed and falls unconscious to the ground. The mirage vanishes.
Dawn breaks. Raymonda decides that the vision she had in the night is an omen.

Act II
Festivities are underway at the Dayrice castle.
Among the guests is the Saracen knight, Abderakhman, accompanied by а magnificent suite. Raymonda recognizes him to be the mysterious stranger of her dream. She is terrified. Abderakhman offers Raymonda power and riches in return for her hand and heart. Raymonda rejects Abderakhman. Enraged, Abderakhman tries to abduct her.
Suddenly knights appear. They have returned from the crusade. Jean de Brienne is among them.
King Andrei П suggests that Jean de Brienne and Abderakhman settle their diffеrences in single combat. Jean de Brienne gets the better of Abderakhman. The lovers are united.

Act III
King Andrei II blesses the marriage of Raymonda аnd Jеаn de Brienne. In honour of the King of Hungary, the wedding festivities are concluded by а big Hungarian dance.

Video
December 19, MO
Evening:   Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)   Performance information
Rodelinda (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in three acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym after Antonio Salvi s libretto based on Pierre Corneille s play "Pertharite, roi des Lombards"
Music Director: Christopher Moulds
Stage Director: Richard Jones
Set Designer: Jeremy Herbert
Costume Designer: Nicky Gillibrand
Lighting Designer: Mimi Jordan Sherin
Choreographer: Sarah Fahie
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Co-production with English National Opera.
Will be premiered at the Bolshoi Theatre on December 13, 2015.

SYNOPSIS

Bertarido"s throne has been usurped by Grimoaldo, following which Bertarido fled abroad, leaving behind his wife, Rodelinda, their son Flavio, and his sister Eduige. He has now returned in disguise, having circulated a false report of his own death. Meanwhile Grimoaldo, despite being betrothed to Eduige, seeks Rodelinda"s love.

Act I
Rodelinda mourns the supposed death of Bertarido. Grimoaldo offers her marriage. She rejects his proposal and rounds on him instead. His ally Garibaldo points out to him that matters will be helped if he breaks off his engagement to Eduige. This Grimoaldo immediately does. Alone, Garibaldo shamelessly reveals that he will pretend to love Eduige and use her as a pawn in his own bid for power, on which she has a claim.
Bertarido enters, in disguise. He contemplates the monument which has been erected to his memory, and wonders what has happened to Rodelinda. Unulfo joins him, but both men are forced to hide when Rodelinda and Flavio enter to visit the memorial to Bertarido. When he sees Rodelinda, Bertarido wants to end his wife"s grief by making himself known to her, but Unulfo restrains him.
Garibaldo threatens to kill Flavio unless Rodelinda consents to marry Grimoaldo. Rodelinda agrees to accept Grimoaldo. However, she warns Garibaldo that once she is again queen he will be executed.
Grimoaldo enters. He is delighted that Rodelinda will marry him and reassures Garibaldo that he has his protection. Bertarido believes Rodelinda is unfaithful. He refuses to allow Unulfo to tell Rodelinda that he is alive and decides instead to wait until she has pledged herself to Grimoaldo.

Act II
Garibaldo tells Eduige she has lost Grimoaldo to Rodelinda and should marry him instead. She still loves Grimoaldo. Eduige is horrified by Rodelinda"s consent to marry Grimoaldo. Her love for Grimoaldo, whom she helped to gain the throne, now switches to hate and she plans to take her revenge.
Rodelinda confirms to Grimoaldo that she will marry him, but one condition must be met: that he kill Flavio before her eyes. She cannot be a usurper"s wife and the mother of the lawful king at the same time. Rebuked by Unulfo for encouraging Grimoaldo to kill Flavio, Garibaldo rejects the idea of pity arguing that only through bloodshed can a usurper successfully rule. Unulfo realizes that Garibaldo will betray Grimoaldo as readily as he did Bertarido, and that Rodelinda is, in fact, true to her husband.
Bertarido laments the position in which he now finds himself. Eduige enters and recognizes him. She is pleased to learn that he only wants to rescue his wife and son, not regain his throne (to which she still aspires). Unulfo assures Bertarido that Rodelinda remains faithful to him and that the time has come for him to reveal his identity.
Rodelinda is told by Unulfo that Bertarido is alive. Husband and wife are reunited and he begs her forgiveness for ever doubting her constancy. When Grimoaldo discovers them together, he fails to recognize Bertarido and is appalled to find Rodelinda in the arms of a stranger. Bertarido declares his identity but Rodelinda, afraid for her husband"s safety, claims he is lying. Grimoaldo, uncertain whether the man is her lover or her husband, decides that he will die anyway and leaves the couple to a final parting.

Act III
Eduige gives Unulfo a key to the prison cell in which Bertarido is held. Meanwhile, Garibaldo urges Grimoaldo to execute the prisoner without delay whether or not he is Bertarido. Grimoaldo is unable to act.
Bertarido is bemoaning his fate when his thoughts are interrupted by the sound of a sword dropped into his cell. Hearing someone approaching the cell door, Bertarido assumes it to be his executioner, lashes out and wounds the intruder - who turns out to be Unulfo come to rescue him. Bertarido changes his clothes to disguise himself and he and Unulfo escape via a secret passage.
Eduige, Rodelinda and Flavio arrive to rescue Bertarido. When they discover only his old clothes and fresh blood they assume he has been killed. Rodelinda wishes that someone would kill her and end her sufferings.
While Unulfo goes off to fetch Rodelinda, Bertarido determines to be avenged on Grimoaldo. The usurper enters, tormented by his crimes and longing for a simpler life. He falls asleep. Garibaldo appears and, seizing his chance, attempts to kill Grimoaldo; but Bertarido steps forward from his hiding place and kills Garibaldo. Rodelinda enters and is astonished to find Bertarido alive. Unulfo and Eduige explain the rescue. In gratitude for saving his life, Grimoaldo restores the throne, Rodelinda and their son to Bertarido, and takes Eduige as his wife.

Video
December 20, TU
Evening:   Homage to Maris Liepa   Performance information
Homage to Maris Liepa - Bolshoi Theatre

Concert

Video
December 21, WE
Evening:      Video
December 22, TH
Evening:   Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart)   Performance information
Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in two acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libreto by Lorenzo da Ponte
Stage Director: Floris Visser
Designer: Dieuweke van Reij
Lighting Designer: Alex Brok
Premiered on May 24, 2014

Synopsis

Act I
Ferrando is in love with Dorabella and Guglielmo is in love with Fiordiligi, her sister. Don Alfonso outrages the men by stating that the girls will sooner or later be unfaithful to them; he makes a bet with them that he can prove his words within the space of a day, but that Ferrando and Guglielmo must follow his orders completely during that time. Dorabella and Fiordiligi are waiting impatiently and longingly for their lovers. Alfonso, however, arrives instead and imparts the disastrous news that their fiances must leave immediately for the battlefield. The couples swear eternal fidelity and with great difficulty the sisters bid farewell to their lovers. Ferrando and Guglielmo leave for the front.
Dorabella cannot restrain her despair. The servant girl Despina reacts matter-of-factly and advises the sisters to look for new lovers. Alfonso decides to involve Despina partially in his plans. He introduces her to two exotic foreigners whom he says are in love with Fiordiligi and Dorabella: Despina"s job is to help them obtain their desires. The men"s disguise is complete, for Despina does not recognise them. The sisters are horrified that strange men have gained access to their house. Fiordiligi is offended to the core by their shameless courting and proclaims the steadfastness of her and Dorabella"s fidelity.
Alfonso has to trust in Despina"s talents for the success of his next plan. She advises the foreigners to pretend to kill themselves for unrequited love. As a miracle-working doctor Despina then seems to save the lives of the two men with a magnet; their complete recovery, she says, can only be completed by a kiss from the two sisters. The women react with horrified indignation to such a suggestion.

Act II
Despina advises the sisters how to carry out a no-strings-attached flirtation with the two strangers; the two women are now prepared to allow themselves a little amusement with the men. Dorabella chooses the disguised Guglielmo and Fiordiligi the disguised Ferrando.
The men serenade the women, begging forgiveness for their forward behavior and promising to mend their ways. Alfonso and Despina arrange matters so that the new couples come closer together.
Dorabella is only too ready to exchange her locket with Ferrando"s picture for a medallion in the shape of a heart offered by the disguised Guglielmo. Their new relationship is thus confirmed.
The disguised Ferrando has, however, been rejected with disgust by Fiordiligi. Alone, she nevertheless has to admit to herself that she has fallen in love with the newcomer. Filled with remorse, she begs forgiveness for her infidelity to Guglielmo.
Guglielmo finds it extremely difficult to defend his seduction of Ferrando"s fiancee to Ferrando himself.
Dorabella is ready to begin a new life with her new lover.
Fiordiligi is offended by her sister"s behaviour. However, she intends to flee her newly discovered love and decides to go to Guglielmo. She is trying on clothing left behind by Ferrando when the disguised Ferrando himself appears; Fiordiligi can resist him no longer. Don Alfonso explains the lesson that must be learnt from their experiences to the disillusioned men: such is women"s nature. Despina arrives with the message that the sisters are ready to marry the strangers and that the notary is standing by. A double wedding ceremony is improvised and both women have just signed the marriage contracts when Ferrando"s and Guglielmo"s return is announced. The supposed bridegrooms hide in an adjoining room - only to readopt their original characters and to give the sisters the fright of their lives at their supposed return. Don Alfonso shows them the marriage contracts. The boys react furiously, but the sisters beg for forgiveness. Ferrando and Guglielmo would love to believe them, but do not want to experience something like this ever again. Don Alfonso has won his bet: young people cannot arrive at adulthood emotionally unscathed.

Video
December 23, FR
Evening:   Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart)   Performance information
Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in two acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libreto by Lorenzo da Ponte
Stage Director: Floris Visser
Designer: Dieuweke van Reij
Lighting Designer: Alex Brok
Premiered on May 24, 2014

Synopsis

Act I
Ferrando is in love with Dorabella and Guglielmo is in love with Fiordiligi, her sister. Don Alfonso outrages the men by stating that the girls will sooner or later be unfaithful to them; he makes a bet with them that he can prove his words within the space of a day, but that Ferrando and Guglielmo must follow his orders completely during that time. Dorabella and Fiordiligi are waiting impatiently and longingly for their lovers. Alfonso, however, arrives instead and imparts the disastrous news that their fiances must leave immediately for the battlefield. The couples swear eternal fidelity and with great difficulty the sisters bid farewell to their lovers. Ferrando and Guglielmo leave for the front.
Dorabella cannot restrain her despair. The servant girl Despina reacts matter-of-factly and advises the sisters to look for new lovers. Alfonso decides to involve Despina partially in his plans. He introduces her to two exotic foreigners whom he says are in love with Fiordiligi and Dorabella: Despina"s job is to help them obtain their desires. The men"s disguise is complete, for Despina does not recognise them. The sisters are horrified that strange men have gained access to their house. Fiordiligi is offended to the core by their shameless courting and proclaims the steadfastness of her and Dorabella"s fidelity.
Alfonso has to trust in Despina"s talents for the success of his next plan. She advises the foreigners to pretend to kill themselves for unrequited love. As a miracle-working doctor Despina then seems to save the lives of the two men with a magnet; their complete recovery, she says, can only be completed by a kiss from the two sisters. The women react with horrified indignation to such a suggestion.

Act II
Despina advises the sisters how to carry out a no-strings-attached flirtation with the two strangers; the two women are now prepared to allow themselves a little amusement with the men. Dorabella chooses the disguised Guglielmo and Fiordiligi the disguised Ferrando.
The men serenade the women, begging forgiveness for their forward behavior and promising to mend their ways. Alfonso and Despina arrange matters so that the new couples come closer together.
Dorabella is only too ready to exchange her locket with Ferrando"s picture for a medallion in the shape of a heart offered by the disguised Guglielmo. Their new relationship is thus confirmed.
The disguised Ferrando has, however, been rejected with disgust by Fiordiligi. Alone, she nevertheless has to admit to herself that she has fallen in love with the newcomer. Filled with remorse, she begs forgiveness for her infidelity to Guglielmo.
Guglielmo finds it extremely difficult to defend his seduction of Ferrando"s fiancee to Ferrando himself.
Dorabella is ready to begin a new life with her new lover.
Fiordiligi is offended by her sister"s behaviour. However, she intends to flee her newly discovered love and decides to go to Guglielmo. She is trying on clothing left behind by Ferrando when the disguised Ferrando himself appears; Fiordiligi can resist him no longer. Don Alfonso explains the lesson that must be learnt from their experiences to the disillusioned men: such is women"s nature. Despina arrives with the message that the sisters are ready to marry the strangers and that the notary is standing by. A double wedding ceremony is improvised and both women have just signed the marriage contracts when Ferrando"s and Guglielmo"s return is announced. The supposed bridegrooms hide in an adjoining room - only to readopt their original characters and to give the sisters the fright of their lives at their supposed return. Don Alfonso shows them the marriage contracts. The boys react furiously, but the sisters beg for forgiveness. Ferrando and Guglielmo would love to believe them, but do not want to experience something like this ever again. Don Alfonso has won his bet: young people cannot arrive at adulthood emotionally unscathed.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 24, SA
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:   Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart)   Performance information
Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in two acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libreto by Lorenzo da Ponte
Stage Director: Floris Visser
Designer: Dieuweke van Reij
Lighting Designer: Alex Brok
Premiered on May 24, 2014

Synopsis

Act I
Ferrando is in love with Dorabella and Guglielmo is in love with Fiordiligi, her sister. Don Alfonso outrages the men by stating that the girls will sooner or later be unfaithful to them; he makes a bet with them that he can prove his words within the space of a day, but that Ferrando and Guglielmo must follow his orders completely during that time. Dorabella and Fiordiligi are waiting impatiently and longingly for their lovers. Alfonso, however, arrives instead and imparts the disastrous news that their fiances must leave immediately for the battlefield. The couples swear eternal fidelity and with great difficulty the sisters bid farewell to their lovers. Ferrando and Guglielmo leave for the front.
Dorabella cannot restrain her despair. The servant girl Despina reacts matter-of-factly and advises the sisters to look for new lovers. Alfonso decides to involve Despina partially in his plans. He introduces her to two exotic foreigners whom he says are in love with Fiordiligi and Dorabella: Despina"s job is to help them obtain their desires. The men"s disguise is complete, for Despina does not recognise them. The sisters are horrified that strange men have gained access to their house. Fiordiligi is offended to the core by their shameless courting and proclaims the steadfastness of her and Dorabella"s fidelity.
Alfonso has to trust in Despina"s talents for the success of his next plan. She advises the foreigners to pretend to kill themselves for unrequited love. As a miracle-working doctor Despina then seems to save the lives of the two men with a magnet; their complete recovery, she says, can only be completed by a kiss from the two sisters. The women react with horrified indignation to such a suggestion.

Act II
Despina advises the sisters how to carry out a no-strings-attached flirtation with the two strangers; the two women are now prepared to allow themselves a little amusement with the men. Dorabella chooses the disguised Guglielmo and Fiordiligi the disguised Ferrando.
The men serenade the women, begging forgiveness for their forward behavior and promising to mend their ways. Alfonso and Despina arrange matters so that the new couples come closer together.
Dorabella is only too ready to exchange her locket with Ferrando"s picture for a medallion in the shape of a heart offered by the disguised Guglielmo. Their new relationship is thus confirmed.
The disguised Ferrando has, however, been rejected with disgust by Fiordiligi. Alone, she nevertheless has to admit to herself that she has fallen in love with the newcomer. Filled with remorse, she begs forgiveness for her infidelity to Guglielmo.
Guglielmo finds it extremely difficult to defend his seduction of Ferrando"s fiancee to Ferrando himself.
Dorabella is ready to begin a new life with her new lover.
Fiordiligi is offended by her sister"s behaviour. However, she intends to flee her newly discovered love and decides to go to Guglielmo. She is trying on clothing left behind by Ferrando when the disguised Ferrando himself appears; Fiordiligi can resist him no longer. Don Alfonso explains the lesson that must be learnt from their experiences to the disillusioned men: such is women"s nature. Despina arrives with the message that the sisters are ready to marry the strangers and that the notary is standing by. A double wedding ceremony is improvised and both women have just signed the marriage contracts when Ferrando"s and Guglielmo"s return is announced. The supposed bridegrooms hide in an adjoining room - only to readopt their original characters and to give the sisters the fright of their lives at their supposed return. Don Alfonso shows them the marriage contracts. The boys react furiously, but the sisters beg for forgiveness. Ferrando and Guglielmo would love to believe them, but do not want to experience something like this ever again. Don Alfonso has won his bet: young people cannot arrive at adulthood emotionally unscathed.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 25, SU
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Matinée:   Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart)   Performance information
Cosi fan tutte,ossia La scuola degli amanti (Opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) - Bolshoi Theatre

Opera in two acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Libreto by Lorenzo da Ponte
Stage Director: Floris Visser
Designer: Dieuweke van Reij
Lighting Designer: Alex Brok
Premiered on May 24, 2014

Synopsis

Act I
Ferrando is in love with Dorabella and Guglielmo is in love with Fiordiligi, her sister. Don Alfonso outrages the men by stating that the girls will sooner or later be unfaithful to them; he makes a bet with them that he can prove his words within the space of a day, but that Ferrando and Guglielmo must follow his orders completely during that time. Dorabella and Fiordiligi are waiting impatiently and longingly for their lovers. Alfonso, however, arrives instead and imparts the disastrous news that their fiances must leave immediately for the battlefield. The couples swear eternal fidelity and with great difficulty the sisters bid farewell to their lovers. Ferrando and Guglielmo leave for the front.
Dorabella cannot restrain her despair. The servant girl Despina reacts matter-of-factly and advises the sisters to look for new lovers. Alfonso decides to involve Despina partially in his plans. He introduces her to two exotic foreigners whom he says are in love with Fiordiligi and Dorabella: Despina"s job is to help them obtain their desires. The men"s disguise is complete, for Despina does not recognise them. The sisters are horrified that strange men have gained access to their house. Fiordiligi is offended to the core by their shameless courting and proclaims the steadfastness of her and Dorabella"s fidelity.
Alfonso has to trust in Despina"s talents for the success of his next plan. She advises the foreigners to pretend to kill themselves for unrequited love. As a miracle-working doctor Despina then seems to save the lives of the two men with a magnet; their complete recovery, she says, can only be completed by a kiss from the two sisters. The women react with horrified indignation to such a suggestion.

Act II
Despina advises the sisters how to carry out a no-strings-attached flirtation with the two strangers; the two women are now prepared to allow themselves a little amusement with the men. Dorabella chooses the disguised Guglielmo and Fiordiligi the disguised Ferrando.
The men serenade the women, begging forgiveness for their forward behavior and promising to mend their ways. Alfonso and Despina arrange matters so that the new couples come closer together.
Dorabella is only too ready to exchange her locket with Ferrando"s picture for a medallion in the shape of a heart offered by the disguised Guglielmo. Their new relationship is thus confirmed.
The disguised Ferrando has, however, been rejected with disgust by Fiordiligi. Alone, she nevertheless has to admit to herself that she has fallen in love with the newcomer. Filled with remorse, she begs forgiveness for her infidelity to Guglielmo.
Guglielmo finds it extremely difficult to defend his seduction of Ferrando"s fiancee to Ferrando himself.
Dorabella is ready to begin a new life with her new lover.
Fiordiligi is offended by her sister"s behaviour. However, she intends to flee her newly discovered love and decides to go to Guglielmo. She is trying on clothing left behind by Ferrando when the disguised Ferrando himself appears; Fiordiligi can resist him no longer. Don Alfonso explains the lesson that must be learnt from their experiences to the disillusioned men: such is women"s nature. Despina arrives with the message that the sisters are ready to marry the strangers and that the notary is standing by. A double wedding ceremony is improvised and both women have just signed the marriage contracts when Ferrando"s and Guglielmo"s return is announced. The supposed bridegrooms hide in an adjoining room - only to readopt their original characters and to give the sisters the fright of their lives at their supposed return. Don Alfonso shows them the marriage contracts. The boys react furiously, but the sisters beg for forgiveness. Ferrando and Guglielmo would love to believe them, but do not want to experience something like this ever again. Don Alfonso has won his bet: young people cannot arrive at adulthood emotionally unscathed.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 26, MO
Evening:   The Big Opera. Final of the Competiton   Performance information
The Big Opera. Final of the Competiton - Bolshoi Theatre

Concert

December 27, TU
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 28, WE
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:      Video
December 29, TH
Matinée:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 30, FR
Matinée:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
December 31, SA
Matinée:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Matinée:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video
Evening:   The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich)   Performance information
The Story of Kai and Gerda (Opera by Sergei Banevich) - Bolshoi Theatre

Romantic opera for children in two acts
Music Director: Anton Grishanin
Stage Director: Dmitry Belyanushkin
Set Designer: Valery Leventhal
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Choreographer: Natalia Fiksel
Will be premiered on 28 November 2014
1996 music version

SYNOPSIS

Prologue
A rocky landscape.
The trolls are piecing together the shards of what they call the Mirror of Evil.


Act I
Introduction

The Lamplighter, our guide through this story, tells us that once upon a time an orphaned boy named Kai found a loving home in the good old town of Odense, where the Grandmother took care about him and little Gerda became his friend.

Scene 1.
Odense.

The townsfolk of Odense are looking forward for Spring to drive away winter s chill and snow.
Kai and Gerda are carried away with their exciting game. The Grandmother is calling them home, but they don t hear.
The trolls arrive. They can t bear the merry mood of the townsfolk, and above all they hate Kai s cheerful laughter. The trolls want to spoil the festivity, but the townsfolk drive them away. The trolls plot to revenge.

Scene 2.
Kai and Gerda s house.

Kai is daydreaming over a book. He wishes he could travel to faraway lands, for the old house has grown too small for him.
Gerda sets up the fire in the fireplace and lights the room with candles. Kai swears to her that he will ever be faithful and will never leave her alone.
The Grandmother comes. Kai jokingly tells Gerda the story of the Snow Queen. Gerda laughs, but then notices a shadow outside the window. Someone has been prying on them!
Now Kai understands that he has terrified Gerda, and he starts a game of blind Tom to make it up to her. As they play, they take no notice of a troll approaching.
The troll pricks an icy pointer at Kai s heart. Kai begins mocking Gerda and the Grandmother and sneering at them. Suddenly he sees frostwork turn into writings and hears the voice of the Snow Queen. She wants to take Kai with her, but Gerda refuses to let him go.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter laments the human hearts in which Winter has settled.
The trolls talk over their trick and look forward to the coming of the Snow Queen.

Scene 3.
Odense town square.

A company of strolling performers entertains the townsfolk. Gerda is doing her best to make Kai smile, but he is disdainful and arrogant and insults the townsfolk and the Lamplighter.
The Snow Queen appears and summons Kai to her icy palace. Kai heeds her calling and follows her into the snow whirl.
Gerda sets out to find her beloved.


Act II

Scene 4.
A forest at dusk.

Gerda is making her way through the thicket.
Suddenly the forest gets into motion: the robbers have found the chill in the hollows of the tree trunks. The robbers are tired and hungry and not at all content with having ventured so far away.
The Old Robber-Woman returns with booty. The robbers give praises to her and to their trade.
Gerda falls into the robbers ambush. She possesses nothing that they can rob her of, so they intend to kill her, but the Old Robber-Woman orders to keep her captive until morning.
The Little Robber-Girl appears, the daughter of the Old Robber-Woman. Gerda s story about Kai touches her heart and fills her with desire to help, but she does not know how.
The Little Robber-Girl s captured Reindeer breaks in their conversation: he saw the Snow Queen taking Kai away and knows where to find him.
The Little Robber-Girl sets Gerda and the Reindeer free.
Gerda rides the Reindeer straight to Lapland.

Intermezzo
The Lamplighter contemplates about the saddest and the most wicked thing in the world, lovelessness.

Scene 5.
The Palace of the Snow Queen.

Captive children, whose hearts are frozen by the Snow Queen, are trying to compose the word Eternity with of pieces of ice.
Kai is among the children, and his efforts to compose the word are of no avail.
The Snow Queen arrives and finds that Kai s heart is beginning to thaw. She freezes him again and leaves, and he carries on with his occupation.

Gerda arrives. She sings the song that she and Kai used to sing together, and Kai s heart gets warm again. The flame of Kai and Gerda s love brings the Snow Queen down.

Epilogue
Kai and Gerda hurry to Odense, where they are met by the townsfolk, the Little Robber-Girl and their dear old Grandmother. Everyone is impatient to welcome in the long-awaited spring.

Video
Evening:   The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky)   Performance information
The Nutcracker (Ballet by Pyotr Tchaikovsky) - Bolshoi Theatre

Ballet in two acts
Libretto by Yuri Grigorovich after the fairy-tale of the same name by Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann, ideas from the scenario by Marius Petipa used
Choreographer: Yuri Grigorovich
Designer: Simon Virsaladze
Music Director: Gennadi Rozhdestvensky

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Guests are gathering for a Christmas party at the Stahlbaum home. Among them are Drosselmeyer, godfather to Marie and Fritz, the Stahlbaums' children. He has brought them a wonderful present: a funny Nutcracker.
The children wait with impatience for when at long last they will be shown the Christmas tree and the presents. The long awaited moment comes: the handsomely adorned Christmas tree is presented to the assembled company.
Drosselmeyer suddenly appears disguised as a magician: he is not recognized by the children. Their unknown guest's ability to make their toys come alive delights the children but, as everything that is clad in mystery, it involuntarily arouses their fear. In order to calm them down, Drosselmeyer takes off his mask and the chil dren now recognize their beloved godfather. Marie wants to play with the wonderful dolls which have come alive, but they have already been tidied away. To comfort Marie, Drosselmeyer gives her the Nutcracker-Doll. Marie takes a great liking to this awkward, funny creature.
Marie's brother Fritz, who is a great tease and very naughty, acci dentally breaks the doll. With great tenderness, Marie comforts her injured Nutcracker and rocks it backwards and forwards. Fritz and his friends now put on mouse masks and tease poor Marie.
The guests appear from an adjoining room. After the final, ceremonial Grossvater dance, they all leave.
At night the room where the Christmas tree stands is bathed in moonlight. It looks mysterious and full of magical secrets. Overcoming her fears, Marie has come to the room to visit her ‘sick' Nutcracker-Doll. She kisses the doll and rocks it.
Drosselmeyer now appears. But instead of her kind godfather, he has turned into a wizard. At a wave of his hand everything around them is transformed: the walls of the room slide back, the Christmas tree starts to grow. And all the toys come alive and grow together with the tree.
Suddenly, mice creep out from under the floor boards, led by the Mouse King. The dolls are panic-stricken and thrown into confusion. The Nutcracker's quick wits and bravery save the day: lining up the lead soldiers, he boldly leads them out to do battle with the mice forces.
However, the forces are unequal, the advantage is on the side of the evil mice. The Nutcracker is left alone to face the Mouse King and his suite. Marie is out of her mind with worry over the danger that threatens her doll. At this very moment, Drosselmeyer hands her a lighted candle and she throws it at the mice who scurry away helter-skelter.
The battle field empties. The only person left here is the Nutcracker who lies without moving on the floor. Marie, together with the dolls, hurries to his rescue. And now a miracle occurs...Before Marie stands a handsome youth, the Nutcracker-Prince. He walks forward to meet her.
The walls of the house disappear. Marie and her friends are standing under a star-studded sky, by a fairy-tale Christmas tree. Snowflakes go round in a magical dance. Marie and her Nutcracker-Prince, beckon, as if to a beautiful dream, to the twinkling star at the top of the Christmas tree. They climb into a magic boat and set off for the top of the tree. The dolls follow behind them.

Act II
Marie and Nutcracker-Prince are sailing in their magic boat through the Christmas tree kingdom. There are their friends, the dolls with them. The shining star is getting closer and closer. They are just about to reach the top of the tree when they are suddenly attacked by the mice and the Mouse King who have crept up behind them. Once again, the Nutcracker-Prince goes boldly into battle. Horribly frightened, Marie and the dolls watch the fight. The Nutcracker-Prince vanquishes the enemy. Joyous victory celebrations are underway. The dolls dance, the candles burn even brighter, the Christmas tree comes alive. The evil mice have been defeated. Marie and the Nutcracker-Prince are radiant with happiness - they have reached the kingdom of their dreams! But it appears all this was just a dream. Christmas Eve is over and with it all wonderful reveries. Marie, still in the thrall of the fabulous dream, is sitting at home by the Christmas tree, with the Nutcracker-Doll on her lap.

?

Video


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