|St. Petersburg Eifman Ballet, Russia, 2017|
Tour Dates: 4th September - 25th September, 2017
Saint Petersburg Eifman Ballet, established by Boris Eifman in 1977, was from day one recognized for its new and innovative concept of ballet....
Saint Petersburg Eifman Ballet, established by Boris Eifman in 1977, was from day one recognized for its new and innovative concept of ballet. The company’s first performances already stirred the interest of the audiences and ballet critics who argued about new tendencies in Russian ballet.
In the 1980’s the choreographer and his company, characterized by an outstanding dance intellect, continued to explore new genres and develop new repertoires which are all distinguished for their strikingly sharp choreographies, intended to express the fiery passion of the ballet characters.
Today St. Petersburg Eifman Ballet is renowned among ballet lovers in Asia, Europe, the Americas and in Australia for such ballets as Tchaikovsky; I, Don Quixote; Red Giselle, Russian Hamlet, Anna Karenina, The Seagull, Onegin, Rodin, Beyond Sin, Requiem. These works not only represent the highest artistic level of achievements of contemporary Russian ballet, but also welcome the spectators into the immortal spiritual heritage of Russian and world culture that inspired the choreographer and his dancers. The creativity and innovation of Eifman Ballet and their new interpretations of cultural masterpieces carry a huge educational potential to involve a wide audience into the world of high arts.
Boris Eifman’s endeavor to engage his spectators in the infinite world of human passions, to form a spiritual liaison with the audience, to amaze viewers by the brilliance and dynamism of his plastique – all this has ensured a decades-long success of Eifman Ballet’s performances at leading venues around the globe.
Founder & Choreographer：Boris Eifman
Boris Eifman is one of the few, if not the only Russian choreographer who’s energetic and brilliant artistic life has been going on for several decades. He has created more than forty ballet performances and obtained honorary titles such as the People’s Artist of Russia, the Laureate of the State Prize of the Russian Federation, the laureate of the Golden Mask and the Golden Soffit, he is also the holder of the Order of Merit for the Fatherland, and many international prizes and titles.
The choreographer was born in Siberia and received his ballet degree from the department of choreography of the Leningrad Conservatory. Already in 1977 he set up his own company – the Leningrad New Ballet today known to millions of art lovers as St. Petersburg Eifman Ballet. The choreographer and his outstanding dancers are known for creating the new dance repertory of modern Russia. According to Boris Eifman a new century demands new choreographies that closely reflect the modern human being. Earnestly concerned with the problems of today Boris Eifman openly speaks with his audience about complicated and dramatic aspects of human life; he defines his genre as “psychological ballet”. “Throughout my creative life I’ve been expanding the boundaries of the ballet theatre and, first and foremost, searching for a body language capable of expressing the life of human spirit. Dance isn’t a physical process for me, but a spiritual one”, - says Boris Eifman.
Forming a special and innovative repertoire based upon the rich traditions of Russian psychological theater, and new choreography of the XXI century are among the key priorities within the artistic mission of Boris Eifman and his company.
Program: Anna Karenina
Boris Eifman’s ballet Anna Karenina is a true burst of inner psychological energy and is amazingly precise in delivering emotional impact upon its viewers. By setting aside all secondary storylines in Leo Tolstoy’s novel, the choreographer focused on the love triangle «Anna – Karenin – Vronsky». Using the language of dance, Boris Eifman managed to portray the drama of a woman being reborn. According to the choreographer, it is the passion of love, the «basic instinct» which has led the heroine to the breach of the then current norms of social morality, killed her motherly love and destroyed her inner world. Being completely consumed and crushed by passion, a woman is ready for any sacrifice.
The regular life of the Karenin family – the husband’s public service, the strict high society conventions – produced the illusion that harmony and peace reign there. Anna’s passionate love for Vronsky destroyed the “matter of course” in their existence. The sincerity of the lovers’ feelings was doubted and rejected and one was afraid of their frankness. Karenin’s hypocrisy was acceptable to everyone but Anna. She preferred the all-absorbing love for Vronsky over her duties towards her son. And thus she doomed herself to lead the life of an outcast. She saw no pleasure in traveling or in high society entertainments but is tragically constrained by the need of being in a sensual relationship with a man. This sort of dependence causes pain and suffering. Anna committed suicide to set herself free, to end her dreadful and agonizing life.
The choreographer says that his ballet speaks not of the past but of today: the timeless emotional content of the performance and obvious parallels to reality can’t leave the contemporary viewer indifferent.
What is a more important goal in life: to maintain the conventional illusion of existing harmony between duty and feelings, or surrender to a sincere passion? Do we have a right to destroy our family, to deprive a child of his mother’s care just for the sake of what our flesh lusts for?...All these questions haunted Tolstoy in his times, and we can’t avoid raising them over again and again today. But answers are still far-off! What remains there is only our thirst for being understood both in our life and death.
“The ballet world in search of a major choreographer need search no more. He is Boris Eifman”
- Anna Kisselgoff, The New York Times
“There now need be no doubt that choreographer Boris Eifman - theatrical magician extraordinary - is here tostay. Perhaps the only doubt is whether he is the last major choreographer of the 20th century or the first of the21st”
- Clive Barnes, New York Post