Violence, Sex & Beauty

David Dawson: «Reverence» in St. Petersburg

The fifth anniversary Mariinsky Festival started in March with the premiere of two ballets: William Forsythe’s 1996 “Approximate Sonata”  and a new ballet by British choreographer David Dawson, “Reverence.”  That this is the second year in which the Mariinsky opens with a Forsythe choreography testifies to the radical changes taking place in the “House Of Petipa.” The annual international festival is being rapidly transformed from a kind of window on Europe and America, as it was conceived five years ago, into the citadel of Russian’s ballet avant-garde.

“Approximate Sonata,” shown se­cond in the program after Balanchine’s “Apollo,” caused a real storm in the audience, which received it like a long-awaited event. The set was reduced to a poster on a tripod, with the word “ YES”  written in Russian. Dancer Andrei Ivanov appeared onstage exaggeratedly chewing gum and moving nonchalantly, as if he were just hanging around. Instead of being shocked, the St Petersburg ballet audience was in raptures. So when Ivanov suddenly asked loudly, “Did I come in right?” the public joyfully responded, “Yes!”  As soon as Ivanov began his duet with Elena Sheshina, last year’s Mariinsky premieres – ...

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Tanz Juni 2005
Rubrik: On Stage, Seite 44
von Maria Ratanova