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Le Corsaire (Ballet by Adolphe Adam)

Le Corsaire (Ballet by Adolphe Adam)

Ballet in three acts
Libretto by Jules Henri Vernoy de Saint-Georges and Joseph Mazilier edited by Marius Petipa
Choreography: Marius Petipa
Revival: Alexei Ratmansky, Yuri Burlaka
New Choreography: Alexei Ratmansky
Designer: Boris Kaminsky
Costume Designer: Yelena Zaitseva
Music Director: Pavel Klinichev
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Premiered on June 21, 2007.
Presented with two intervals.
Running time: 3 hours 35 minutes.

SYNOPSIS

Act I
Scene 1
Medora is Kidnapped

The bazaar square. The beautiful slave-girls who are up for sale, sit awaiting buyers; here too throngs a crowd of Turks, Greeks, Armenians who are examining the wares brought from all corners of the earth.
A band of corsairs appear in the square, led by Conrad. He has evidently come to the bazaar to carry out his secret plan to meet a certain beautiful stranger.
Medora, the ward of bazaar-owner Isaac Lanquedem, comes out on to the balcony of her guardian s house. Seeing Conrad, she quickly makes a selam* out of the flowers she has to hand and throws it to him. The latter, reading the selam is delighted, because now he is convinced the beautiful Medora loves him.
Isaac and Medora appear in the square. While Isaac examines the slave-girls, Medora and Conrad exchange passionate and meaningful glances.
A rich buyer appears in the square - Seyd-Pasha - and his suite. He is surrounded by dealers showing off their girls, but not one of the latter pleases the Pasha. Then Seyd-Pasha catches sight of Medora. He decides come what may to purchase her but Isaac refuses to sell him his ward, obsequiously explaining to Seyd-Pasha that she is not for sale and offering him instead a pair of other maidens.
But Seyd-Pasha insists on buying Medora. His offers are so advantageous and attractive that Isaac is unable to resist them and agrees to the deal. Issuing an order that the new slave-girl he has just bought be delivered to his harem, Seyd-Pasha goes off, threatening Isaac with punishment if Medora is not immediately dispatched to his harem. Conrad calms down Medora, promising that the corsairs will kidnap her.
At a sign from Conrad, the corsairs start a merry dance with the slave-girls, in which Medora takes an active part, to the great delight of all present. But suddenly, Conrad gives the signal, and the corsairs make off with the slave-girls and Medora too. Isaac runs after Medora and tries to snatch her from the corsairs; Conrad orders that Isaac, who is frightened out of his wits, should also be seized.

Scene 2
The Plotters

The corsairs den. The corsairs, with their rich booty and captive maidens return to their lair; also brought here is the trembling Isaac. Medora, saddened by the fate of her fellow slaves, begs Conrad to free them and he agrees. Birbanto and the other pirates protest, saying that they too have a right to the women. They become mutinous. Conrad, deflecting a blow aimed at him, forces Birbanto to his knees; then he soothes a frightened Medora and carefully protecting her, goes through with her into the tent.
Taking advantage of the general confusion, Isaac decides to make his escape. However he is seen by Birbanto and the other pirates who taunt him and, taking all his money, suggest that he participate in a plot to get back Medora. Picking a flower from the bunch, Birbanto sprays it with a sleeping potion, he then hands it to Isaac and tells him to give it to Conrad.
Conrad appears and arranges for dinner to be served. While the corsairs are having their supper, Medora dances for Conrad who swears eternal love to her.
Gradually the corsairs disperse, except for Birbanto and several of his henchmen who are keeping an eye on Conrad and Medora. Isaac now appears with a young slave-girl; pointing to Medora, he tells the slave-girl to give her the flower. Medora, clasps the flower to her breast and hands it to Conrad, adding that flowers explain all her love for him. Conrad, lovingly presses the flower to his lips but the intoxicating smell goes to his head and, despite his incredible efforts not to succumb to its effect, he immediately falls into a deep sleep. Birbanto makes a sign to the plotters to put their plan into action.
Medora is taken aback at Conrad suddenly falling asleep. She is surrounded by the corsairs who threaten her. Trying to defend herself, Medora stabs Birbanto in the arm and, attempting to flee, she faints and falls into the arms of her kidnappers.
Dismissing his henchmen, Birbanto is about to make short work of Conrad when the latter wakes up. Hearing that Medora has been abducted, Conrad and the corsairs set off in pursuit.

Act II
Scene 3
The Corsair
?s Captive
Seyd-Pasha s palace. The bored odalisques start playing various games. Zulma demands that the odalisques show her respect, but Gulnare and her friends mock the haughty sultana.
Enter Seyd-Pasha. The odalisques are required to bow down before their master, but the unruly Gulnare mocks him too. Seyd-Pasha, carried away by her youth and beauty, throws her his handkerchief, but Gulnare throws it on to her friends, eventually the handkerchief, passing from hand to hand, reaches an old negress who, picking it up, starts to chase Seyd-Pasha, smothering him with her caresses. Seyd-Pasha is hard put to it to contain his anger.
In an attempt to please the Pasha, the Keeper of the harem brings forward three odalisques.
Zulma tries to attract the Pasha s attention but, at that moment, the latter is told of the arrival of the slave trader.
Catching sight of Isaac, who leads in Medora, Seyd-Pasha is overjoyed. Medora begs Seyd-Pasha to grant her her freedom but, seeing that he is unrelenting, complains of cruel treatment by her guardian; Seyd-Pasha orders the eunuch to send the Jew packing. Going up to Medora, Gulnare is kind to her and sympathizes with her lot. Seyd-Pasha offers Medora various jewels but, to Seyd-Pasha s displeasure and Gulnare s joy, she turns them down outright.
The leader of a group of dervishes appears, who requests lodging for the night. Seyd-Pasha permits the dervishes to put up in his garden. Amused at the dervishes embarrassment at the sight of the young, seductive slave-girls, Seyd-Pasha promises to acquaint them with all the delights his harem has to offer and orders the slave-girls to start dancing.
Among the beautiful dancing girls, Conrad recognizes his beloved.
At the end of the celebration, Seyd-Pasha orders that Medora be conducted to his private rooms in the palace. Throwing off their dervish disguise, the corsairs threaten Seyd-Pasha with their daggers; Conrad and Medora embrace.
The corsairs are engrossed in their plundering of Seyd-Pasha s palace. Gulnare comes running in. pursued by Birbanto, she rushes up to Medora and begs for her help. Conrad takes Gulnare s part, meanwhile Medora recognizes Birbanto as her kidnapper and informs Conrad of his treacherous action. Laughing, Birbanto denies her accusation; in confirmation of her words, Medora points out to Conrad the wound she inflicted on Birbanto by stabbing him in the arm. Conrad is about to shoot the traitor, but Medora and Gulnare restrain him and Birbanto runs off shouting threats.
Medora, giddy with weakness and nervous tension, is on the point of fainting but, with assistance from Gulnare and Conrad, she regains consciousness and, at their request, is about to follow them when, suddenly, Seyd-Pasha s guards burst into the hall. The corsairs are routed, Conrad is disarmed and sentenced to death. Seyd-Pasha is victorious.

Act III
Scene 4
Seyd-Pasha
?s wedding
Seyd-Pasha s private rooms in the palace. Seyd-Pasha gives orders that preparations get underway for his wedding to Medora. He proposes to Medora who indignantly turns him down. Conrad in chains is led to his execution. Medora, seeing the terrible plight of her loved one, begs Seyd-Pasha to show him mercy. Seyd-Pasha promises to pardon Conrad on the condition that Medora, of her own free will, agrees to be his. Medora is at her wit s end and, in despair, she accepts Seyd-Pasha s terms.
Left on their own, Conrad hurries over to Medora who tells him on what condition Seyd-Pasha has agreed to free him. Conrad rejects the nefarious condition and they decide to die together. Gulnare who has been observing them suggests a plan; the lovers agree to it and thank her profusely.
Seyd-Pasha returns. Medora informs him she accepts his terms. Overjoyed, Seyd-Pasha gives orders that Conrad be freed from all form of persecution and that preparations be put in hand for the wedding ceremony.
The wedding procession approaches, the bride is covered by a veil. At the end of the ceremony, Seyd-Pasha gives the bride his arm, and puts a ring on her finger. The dances of the odalisques bring the wedding to an end.
Left alone with Seyd-Pasha Medora tries to entice him with her dances, but it is quite obvious that she can t wait for the hour of her delivery. Catching sight of the pistol in Seyd-Pasha s belt, she says it frightens her and asks him to take it off. Seyd-Pasha does as he is asked and hands the pistol to Medora. Her fear increases at the sight of the dagger, also tucked in his belt. To calm her down once and for all, Seyd-Pasha pulls the dagger free and gives it to her. He then tries to embrace her but, dancing, Medora slips nimbly from his grasp. Seyd-Pasha falls at her feet and, imploring her love, gives her his handkerchief. As if for a joke, she ties his hands up with it and he, amused, laughs at her prank. On the stroke of midnight, Conrad appears. Seyd-Pasha is horrified when he sees Medora hand over his dagger to Conrad; he wants to call for help but Medora aims the pistol at him and says she will kill him if he so much as opens his mouth. Seyd-Pasha doesn t dare utter a word, meanwhile Medor and Conrad quickly escape.
Seyd-Pasha tries to free himself. Gulnare comes running in and, feigning horror, unties his hands. Seyd-Pasha summons his guard and orders them to pursue the fugitives. Three shots of the cannon bring the news that the corsairs ship has set sail. Seyd-Pasha has a violent fit of temper: his beloved wife has been abducted. "I m your wife", says Gulnare, and, pointing to her wedding finger she adds, "This is your ring!"
Seyd-Pasha is left in a state of shock.

Scene 5
Storm and Shipwreck

At sea. A clear and peaceful night on deck. The corsairs are celebrating their liberation. Only the hapless Birbanto, in chains, does not take part in the merry-making. Taking pity on him, Medora asks Conrad to forgive Birbanto and the latter joins in her pleas. After some hesitation Conrad pardons Birbanto who requests permission to regale his fellow pirates with a barrel of wine.
There is a swift change in the weather and a storm gets up; taking advantage of the confusion, Birbanto again starts to stir up trouble with the pirates, but Conrad throws him overboard. The storm gets worse: there are peals of thunder, flashes of lightning and a very rough sea. A resounding crack is heard and the ship goes aground on a rock.
The wind slowly dies down and the sea becomes calm again. The moon comes out and two figures are lit up in its silvery light: these are Medora and Conrad who, miraculously, haven t drowned. They reach the rock, clamber up onto it and thank God for their salvation.

*Selam - bouquet in which each flower has special meaning. The language of flowers and communication by means of a flower code was very popular in Europe at the end of the 18th-19th centuries

?

The Main Stage

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Opera in two acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by anonymous author after the libretto by Antonio Marchi Alcina delusa da Ruggiero inspired by Ludovico Ariosto s Orlando furioso
Music Director: Andrea Marcon
Director: Katie Mitchell
Will be premiered on October 18, 2017
Co-production with Festival international d art lyrique d Aix-en-Provence (France)

Synopsis
With no news from her fiance Ruggiero, the valiant Bradamante has decided to search for him in the guise of her own brother Ricciardo, accompanied by Ruggiero"s former tutor Melisso.

ACT I
Bradamante and Melisso land on the enchanted island of the magician Alcina where they are welcomed by Alcina"s sister, Morgana, who immediately falls under the spell of the imposter Ricciardo. Ruggiero appears next with Alcina, bewitched by her charms. The young Oberto then enters: he is in search of his father, who has also fallen under the spell of the magician. Blinded by Alcina"s love, Ruggiero refuses to recognize his fiancee under the clothes of Ricciardo, ignoring Melisso"s warnings. Jealous of the imposter Ricciardo, Oronte, the would-be suitor of Morgana, makes Ruggiero believe that Alcina has fallen for Ricciardo, which triggers the ire of the young man. He then suggests to his mistress that she pushes away this rival by saving for him the same fate as the other men detained here: he asks her to transform him into a beast or a plant! Morgana hastens to warn Ricciardo who, in light of the situation, sees no other choice but to feign love for the young woman.
Melisso manages to bring Ruggiero back to reality. But when Bradamante appears, Ruggiero thinks it is a false apparition created by Alcina, and he rebuffs his fiancee. Just as Alcina is about to transform Ricciardo into a wild beast, she is stopped in mid-action by Morgana then by Ruggiero. Then, Ruggiero pretends to want to go hunting. Alcina authorizes him to leave. She promises Oberto that he will see his father again soon. Oronte then comes to announce the escape of Ruggiero and Ricciardo. Alcina collapses.
Now that he has revealed Ricciardo"s treason, Oronte thinks he can win back Morgana"s love. As for Alcina, betrayed, she invokes infernal powers to take her vengeance, but they no longer respond to her call.

ACT II
Repentant, Morgana draws close to Oronte. Alcina, desperate, tries to keep Ruggiero from escaping, but he proves determined to leave her. Bradamante, Ruggiero, and Melisso agree to reduce Alcina"s palace to rubble and return the magician"s former lovers to their human form. When Bradamante shatters the spells, Alcina and Morgana lose their power, while the animals and plants, including Oberto"s father, take back their human form.

New Stage

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Opera in two acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by anonymous author after the libretto by Antonio Marchi Alcina delusa da Ruggiero inspired by Ludovico Ariosto s Orlando furioso
Music Director: Andrea Marcon
Director: Katie Mitchell
Will be premiered on October 18, 2017
Co-production with Festival international d art lyrique d Aix-en-Provence (France)

Synopsis
With no news from her fiance Ruggiero, the valiant Bradamante has decided to search for him in the guise of her own brother Ricciardo, accompanied by Ruggiero"s former tutor Melisso.

ACT I
Bradamante and Melisso land on the enchanted island of the magician Alcina where they are welcomed by Alcina"s sister, Morgana, who immediately falls under the spell of the imposter Ricciardo. Ruggiero appears next with Alcina, bewitched by her charms. The young Oberto then enters: he is in search of his father, who has also fallen under the spell of the magician. Blinded by Alcina"s love, Ruggiero refuses to recognize his fiancee under the clothes of Ricciardo, ignoring Melisso"s warnings. Jealous of the imposter Ricciardo, Oronte, the would-be suitor of Morgana, makes Ruggiero believe that Alcina has fallen for Ricciardo, which triggers the ire of the young man. He then suggests to his mistress that she pushes away this rival by saving for him the same fate as the other men detained here: he asks her to transform him into a beast or a plant! Morgana hastens to warn Ricciardo who, in light of the situation, sees no other choice but to feign love for the young woman.
Melisso manages to bring Ruggiero back to reality. But when Bradamante appears, Ruggiero thinks it is a false apparition created by Alcina, and he rebuffs his fiancee. Just as Alcina is about to transform Ricciardo into a wild beast, she is stopped in mid-action by Morgana then by Ruggiero. Then, Ruggiero pretends to want to go hunting. Alcina authorizes him to leave. She promises Oberto that he will see his father again soon. Oronte then comes to announce the escape of Ruggiero and Ricciardo. Alcina collapses.
Now that he has revealed Ricciardo"s treason, Oronte thinks he can win back Morgana"s love. As for Alcina, betrayed, she invokes infernal powers to take her vengeance, but they no longer respond to her call.

ACT II
Repentant, Morgana draws close to Oronte. Alcina, desperate, tries to keep Ruggiero from escaping, but he proves determined to leave her. Bradamante, Ruggiero, and Melisso agree to reduce Alcina"s palace to rubble and return the magician"s former lovers to their human form. When Bradamante shatters the spells, Alcina and Morgana lose their power, while the animals and plants, including Oberto"s father, take back their human form.

New Stage

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Giacomo Puccini
Opera in four acts
Libretto by Domenico Oliva, Marco Praga, Giuseppe Giacosa, Luigi Illica, Ruggero Leoncavallo, and Giulio Ricordi based on the novel L"histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut by Abb? Pr?vost
Music Director: Jader Bignamini
Director: Adolf Shapiro
Designer: Maria Tregubova
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Choreographer: Tatiana Baganova
Premiered on October 16, 2016

SYNOPSIS

Act I
A public square in Amiens

Students enjoy the summer evening in the town square. One of them, Edmondo, sings a madrigal of youthful pleasure, hoping to attract the young women. They ask a brooding Des Grieux to join them, and to prove he is not cynical about love, he gallantly flirts with a group of girls with mock courtesy. As they all celebrate in the street, a carriage arrives at the inn carrying Geronte, Lescaut and his sister Manon. Des Grieux is struck by Manon"s beauty and shyly approaches her. She is called inside by her brother, but has been won over by Des Grieux"s words, and they make plans to meet later.
Geronte discusses Manon"s future with Lescaut. The family wants her to take the veil, but Lescaut has other ideas for her future, namely a match with the older Geronte (along with whatever benefits he may glean from the rich treasury official). The two men agree to meet for dinner, and Lescaut then joins a card game with the students. Edmondo overhears Geronte making plans to take Manon to Paris. He tells Des Grieux and agrees to help prevent this from happening.
Manon and Des Grieux meet as agreed and express their mutual attraction. He warns of Geronte"s plan to abduct her, so they run away together. Geronte is affronted, but Lescaut advises him to be patient, for he knows his sister"s expensive tastes will soon exhaust a student"s income.

Act II
An elegant room in Geronte"s house in Paris

As Lescaut predicted, Manon is now Geronte"s mistress and prepares for the day, aided by a hairdresser. When Lescaut arrives, she asks about Des Grieux, recalling their once-passionate affair. When speaking to Des Grieux, Lescaut has been vague about Manon"s whereabouts, but encouraged him to become a gambler so that he may acquire enough wealth to keep her in the style she requires.
Geronte has arranged a reception with musicians, who sing a madrigal in Manon"s honor. A dancing master teaches the minuet, but in spite of all the finery, Manon is bored with her new life. Realizing that she is unhappy, Lescaut privately decides to fetch Des Grieux. The guests depart for a stroll down the esplanade, and Manon promises to join them later.
Des Grieux appears at the door. He berates her lack of fidelity, but in begging forgiveness, she softens his resolve. Geronte returns and is thunderstruck to find them in each other"s arms. Manon counters his deriding remarks by holding a mirror to his face, reminding him of his advanced age. Threatening revenge, he leaves the couple alone.
Lescaut soon enters, breathless. Geronte has summoned the authorities, denouncing Manon"s lack of morality. Before fleeing with Des Grieux, she gathers her expensive jewelry, but that delay proves costly - the guards arrive and arrest her for thievery.

Act III
A square near the harbor in Le Havre

Manon is being held in the barracks, awaiting deportation to America with a group of prostitutes. Lescaut has bribed one of her jailors, and he and Lescaut wait for the changing of the guard to effect her escape. She is made aware of the plan while sharing a brief moment with Des Grieux. A shot betrays their scheme. Manon and the other prisoners are then led one-by-one to a ship while the onlooking townspeople make wicked comments as each one passes by. Des Grieux begs the captain to be hired as a deckhand, and he agrees to take the infatuated young man on the voyage to the New World.

Act IV
A wilderness on the edges of the Louisiana Territory

After troubles with the colonial governor, the two lovers are forced to make an escape. Manon is destitute and very weak. She sends Des Grieux ahead to look for water and shelter. When he returns it is too late. She dies believing that time will cleanse her of any sin, and he is left with nothing but memories of their too brief time together.

The Main Stage

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Giacomo Puccini
Opera in four acts
Libretto by Domenico Oliva, Marco Praga, Giuseppe Giacosa, Luigi Illica, Ruggero Leoncavallo, and Giulio Ricordi based on the novel L"histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut by Abb? Pr?vost
Music Director: Jader Bignamini
Director: Adolf Shapiro
Designer: Maria Tregubova
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Choreographer: Tatiana Baganova
Premiered on October 16, 2016

SYNOPSIS

Act I
A public square in Amiens

Students enjoy the summer evening in the town square. One of them, Edmondo, sings a madrigal of youthful pleasure, hoping to attract the young women. They ask a brooding Des Grieux to join them, and to prove he is not cynical about love, he gallantly flirts with a group of girls with mock courtesy. As they all celebrate in the street, a carriage arrives at the inn carrying Geronte, Lescaut and his sister Manon. Des Grieux is struck by Manon"s beauty and shyly approaches her. She is called inside by her brother, but has been won over by Des Grieux"s words, and they make plans to meet later.
Geronte discusses Manon"s future with Lescaut. The family wants her to take the veil, but Lescaut has other ideas for her future, namely a match with the older Geronte (along with whatever benefits he may glean from the rich treasury official). The two men agree to meet for dinner, and Lescaut then joins a card game with the students. Edmondo overhears Geronte making plans to take Manon to Paris. He tells Des Grieux and agrees to help prevent this from happening.
Manon and Des Grieux meet as agreed and express their mutual attraction. He warns of Geronte"s plan to abduct her, so they run away together. Geronte is affronted, but Lescaut advises him to be patient, for he knows his sister"s expensive tastes will soon exhaust a student"s income.

Act II
An elegant room in Geronte"s house in Paris

As Lescaut predicted, Manon is now Geronte"s mistress and prepares for the day, aided by a hairdresser. When Lescaut arrives, she asks about Des Grieux, recalling their once-passionate affair. When speaking to Des Grieux, Lescaut has been vague about Manon"s whereabouts, but encouraged him to become a gambler so that he may acquire enough wealth to keep her in the style she requires.
Geronte has arranged a reception with musicians, who sing a madrigal in Manon"s honor. A dancing master teaches the minuet, but in spite of all the finery, Manon is bored with her new life. Realizing that she is unhappy, Lescaut privately decides to fetch Des Grieux. The guests depart for a stroll down the esplanade, and Manon promises to join them later.
Des Grieux appears at the door. He berates her lack of fidelity, but in begging forgiveness, she softens his resolve. Geronte returns and is thunderstruck to find them in each other"s arms. Manon counters his deriding remarks by holding a mirror to his face, reminding him of his advanced age. Threatening revenge, he leaves the couple alone.
Lescaut soon enters, breathless. Geronte has summoned the authorities, denouncing Manon"s lack of morality. Before fleeing with Des Grieux, she gathers her expensive jewelry, but that delay proves costly - the guards arrive and arrest her for thievery.

Act III
A square near the harbor in Le Havre

Manon is being held in the barracks, awaiting deportation to America with a group of prostitutes. Lescaut has bribed one of her jailors, and he and Lescaut wait for the changing of the guard to effect her escape. She is made aware of the plan while sharing a brief moment with Des Grieux. A shot betrays their scheme. Manon and the other prisoners are then led one-by-one to a ship while the onlooking townspeople make wicked comments as each one passes by. Des Grieux begs the captain to be hired as a deckhand, and he agrees to take the infatuated young man on the voyage to the New World.

Act IV
A wilderness on the edges of the Louisiana Territory

After troubles with the colonial governor, the two lovers are forced to make an escape. Manon is destitute and very weak. She sends Des Grieux ahead to look for water and shelter. When he returns it is too late. She dies believing that time will cleanse her of any sin, and he is left with nothing but memories of their too brief time together.

The Main Stage

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Alcina (Opera by Georg Friedrich Handel)

Opera in two acts
Georg Friedrich Handel
Libretto by anonymous author after the libretto by Antonio Marchi Alcina delusa da Ruggiero inspired by Ludovico Ariosto s Orlando furioso
Music Director: Andrea Marcon
Director: Katie Mitchell
Will be premiered on October 18, 2017
Co-production with Festival international d art lyrique d Aix-en-Provence (France)

Synopsis
With no news from her fiance Ruggiero, the valiant Bradamante has decided to search for him in the guise of her own brother Ricciardo, accompanied by Ruggiero"s former tutor Melisso.

ACT I
Bradamante and Melisso land on the enchanted island of the magician Alcina where they are welcomed by Alcina"s sister, Morgana, who immediately falls under the spell of the imposter Ricciardo. Ruggiero appears next with Alcina, bewitched by her charms. The young Oberto then enters: he is in search of his father, who has also fallen under the spell of the magician. Blinded by Alcina"s love, Ruggiero refuses to recognize his fiancee under the clothes of Ricciardo, ignoring Melisso"s warnings. Jealous of the imposter Ricciardo, Oronte, the would-be suitor of Morgana, makes Ruggiero believe that Alcina has fallen for Ricciardo, which triggers the ire of the young man. He then suggests to his mistress that she pushes away this rival by saving for him the same fate as the other men detained here: he asks her to transform him into a beast or a plant! Morgana hastens to warn Ricciardo who, in light of the situation, sees no other choice but to feign love for the young woman.
Melisso manages to bring Ruggiero back to reality. But when Bradamante appears, Ruggiero thinks it is a false apparition created by Alcina, and he rebuffs his fiancee. Just as Alcina is about to transform Ricciardo into a wild beast, she is stopped in mid-action by Morgana then by Ruggiero. Then, Ruggiero pretends to want to go hunting. Alcina authorizes him to leave. She promises Oberto that he will see his father again soon. Oronte then comes to announce the escape of Ruggiero and Ricciardo. Alcina collapses.
Now that he has revealed Ricciardo"s treason, Oronte thinks he can win back Morgana"s love. As for Alcina, betrayed, she invokes infernal powers to take her vengeance, but they no longer respond to her call.

ACT II
Repentant, Morgana draws close to Oronte. Alcina, desperate, tries to keep Ruggiero from escaping, but he proves determined to leave her. Bradamante, Ruggiero, and Melisso agree to reduce Alcina"s palace to rubble and return the magician"s former lovers to their human form. When Bradamante shatters the spells, Alcina and Morgana lose their power, while the animals and plants, including Oberto"s father, take back their human form.

New Stage

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Giacomo Puccini
Opera in four acts
Libretto by Domenico Oliva, Marco Praga, Giuseppe Giacosa, Luigi Illica, Ruggero Leoncavallo, and Giulio Ricordi based on the novel L"histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut by Abb? Pr?vost
Music Director: Jader Bignamini
Director: Adolf Shapiro
Designer: Maria Tregubova
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Choreographer: Tatiana Baganova
Premiered on October 16, 2016

SYNOPSIS

Act I
A public square in Amiens

Students enjoy the summer evening in the town square. One of them, Edmondo, sings a madrigal of youthful pleasure, hoping to attract the young women. They ask a brooding Des Grieux to join them, and to prove he is not cynical about love, he gallantly flirts with a group of girls with mock courtesy. As they all celebrate in the street, a carriage arrives at the inn carrying Geronte, Lescaut and his sister Manon. Des Grieux is struck by Manon"s beauty and shyly approaches her. She is called inside by her brother, but has been won over by Des Grieux"s words, and they make plans to meet later.
Geronte discusses Manon"s future with Lescaut. The family wants her to take the veil, but Lescaut has other ideas for her future, namely a match with the older Geronte (along with whatever benefits he may glean from the rich treasury official). The two men agree to meet for dinner, and Lescaut then joins a card game with the students. Edmondo overhears Geronte making plans to take Manon to Paris. He tells Des Grieux and agrees to help prevent this from happening.
Manon and Des Grieux meet as agreed and express their mutual attraction. He warns of Geronte"s plan to abduct her, so they run away together. Geronte is affronted, but Lescaut advises him to be patient, for he knows his sister"s expensive tastes will soon exhaust a student"s income.

Act II
An elegant room in Geronte"s house in Paris

As Lescaut predicted, Manon is now Geronte"s mistress and prepares for the day, aided by a hairdresser. When Lescaut arrives, she asks about Des Grieux, recalling their once-passionate affair. When speaking to Des Grieux, Lescaut has been vague about Manon"s whereabouts, but encouraged him to become a gambler so that he may acquire enough wealth to keep her in the style she requires.
Geronte has arranged a reception with musicians, who sing a madrigal in Manon"s honor. A dancing master teaches the minuet, but in spite of all the finery, Manon is bored with her new life. Realizing that she is unhappy, Lescaut privately decides to fetch Des Grieux. The guests depart for a stroll down the esplanade, and Manon promises to join them later.
Des Grieux appears at the door. He berates her lack of fidelity, but in begging forgiveness, she softens his resolve. Geronte returns and is thunderstruck to find them in each other"s arms. Manon counters his deriding remarks by holding a mirror to his face, reminding him of his advanced age. Threatening revenge, he leaves the couple alone.
Lescaut soon enters, breathless. Geronte has summoned the authorities, denouncing Manon"s lack of morality. Before fleeing with Des Grieux, she gathers her expensive jewelry, but that delay proves costly - the guards arrive and arrest her for thievery.

Act III
A square near the harbor in Le Havre

Manon is being held in the barracks, awaiting deportation to America with a group of prostitutes. Lescaut has bribed one of her jailors, and he and Lescaut wait for the changing of the guard to effect her escape. She is made aware of the plan while sharing a brief moment with Des Grieux. A shot betrays their scheme. Manon and the other prisoners are then led one-by-one to a ship while the onlooking townspeople make wicked comments as each one passes by. Des Grieux begs the captain to be hired as a deckhand, and he agrees to take the infatuated young man on the voyage to the New World.

Act IV
A wilderness on the edges of the Louisiana Territory

After troubles with the colonial governor, the two lovers are forced to make an escape. Manon is destitute and very weak. She sends Des Grieux ahead to look for water and shelter. When he returns it is too late. She dies believing that time will cleanse her of any sin, and he is left with nothing but memories of their too brief time together.

The Main Stage

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

Comic ballet in two acts
Libretto by Adrian Piotrovsky and Fyodor Lopukhov
Choreographer: Alexei Ratmansky
Designer: Boris Messerer
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Alexander Rubtsov
Premiered on April 18, 2003.
Presented with one interval.
Running time: 2 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS (HISTORICAL TEXT)

Act I
Scene 1

A small wayside halt, in the steppes, on one of the branch lines of the North Caucasian Railway. Early autumn. The local collective farms have completed both their harvesting and autumn sowing.
A brigade of artistes from one of the capital's theatres is due to arrive in the region to take part in the harvest festival, marking the end of the field work. Some members of the nearest collective farm, The Bright Stream, have come to the halt to welcome their guests. They include the collective farm activist, Gavrilych, who, though advanced in years, is full of the joys of life and a general favorite; the school-girl Galya, and some of her friends, with a bunch of flowers for the artistes; Pyotr, an agricultural student and his wife Zina, a local amusements' organizer. The last to arrive are two dacha dwellers: an elderly man and his anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is wife. Both of the latter, bored to tears, have come to gawk at the visiting artistes. While waiting for the guests to arrive, the dreamy and thoughtful Zina buries her head in a book. Her husband, Pyotr, who is of a cheerful, buoyant disposition, tries to distract her, inducing the others to share in his efforts. Eventually all, except Zina, proceed to the platform. The excited crowd returns, together with the artistes - a ballet dancer, her partner and an accordion-player.
The amusements' organizer, Zina, hails the ballet dancer who stops in her tracks. They recognize each other as old friends, for they once studied togeth er at ballet school. Since then Zina has married Pyotr, the agricultural student, and has gone to work with him on the collective farm where no one has any idea that she used to be a dancer. The two friends, who have remained alone, gaze at each other with curiosity.
The ballerina asks if Zina has forgotten her dancing. But, living in the country, she has not forgotten her dancing skills and intends to prove it. The two friends, compete with each other, trying to see who can remember the most of their former lessons. Gavrilych and Pyotr now appear: they have come to fetch Zina and the ballerina. Zina introduces her husband to the ballerina. Dazzled by the ballerina, Pyotr begins to court her. The latter feels her first pang of jealousy.

Scene 2
The day is on the wane. Encamped among the golden sheaves of wheat, a field workers' brigade from The Bright Stream collective farm joyfully makes plans for tomorrow, which is to be a day of festival. The artistes' brigade arrives. Gavrilych presents them to the field workers' brigade.
The two brigades greet each other. An improvised celebration gets under way. The artistes display the presents they have brought with them for distri bution to the collective farm's best shock workers. There is a gramophone for Gavrilych, a silk dress for the best milkmaid. The prizewinners are lustily congratulated, and the jollity merges into a dance. The first to break into a dance are the grey-haired, bearded ‘inspectors of quality' and their Gavrilych.
The dacha dwellers turn up, late as usual. They are forced to trip a measure and, by way of a joke, they dance an ancient Chaconne. Then comes a number by some young girls, members of an amateur group organized by Zina. But it is the milkmaid who is the center of attention: they want to see her dance in her smart, new dress. The milkmaid dances with the tractor driver. The merriment increases. Gavrilych winds up his new gramophone and asks the guest artistes to dance.
Not wishing to disappoint the collective-farm workers, the artistes agree though they dislike the idea of dancing in their ordinary clothes. They improvise a dance among the wheat sheaves. Their dance gets a mixed reception. The farm workers watch it with pleasure, but the dacha dwellers only have eyes for the artistes themselves (the husband is taken by the classical ballerina, while his wife is attracted by the ballerina's partner). Zina is jealous of her husband. Pyotr, the young agricultural student, is more and more enchanted by the ballerina who seems so brilliant and talented by comparison to his modest, unassuming wife.
The accordionist is asked to join in the dancing with schoolgirl Galya. Now some young field workers from Kuban and the Caucasus burst into a gay, warlike dance which enthralls all present. The merriment reaches its height. Eventually, the assembled company is invited to partake of refreshment. As all make their exit, the old dacha dweller manages to whisper in the visiting ballerina's ear that he would like to see her again, his wife makes a similar proposal to the latter's partner. Meanwhile, Pyotr goes off with the ballerina. Zina is totally distraught, she even starts to cry. The young people, together with Gavrilych, try to calm her down. But now the ballerina returns and assures Zina that she has no intention of flirting with the latter's husband. She suggests that Zina tell the young people that she too used to be a dancer.
Zina agrees and again the two friends dance together. There is general astonishment. The ballerina proposes that a joke be played on Pyotr and the others: she will dress up in her partner's costume and go and meet the anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is dacha dweller's wife. Her partner, made up as a female dancer, shall go to the rendezvous with the old dacha dweller. While Zina shall go to meet her husband in the ballerina's costume. The plan is approved.

Act II
Scene 3

A warm, southern night. A clearing, surrounded by bushes and trees. The young people have assembled. The dacha dwellers turn up too, late as usual. The accordionist has taken a fancy to Galya, the schoolgirl, who had danced with him so merrily earlier in the day. He whispers to her that he will soon be back and that she should wait for him. Galya is quite taken aback. The old dacha dweller, his wife and Pyotr remind their ‘sweethearts' of their trysts. The young people are now determined to teach them a lesson. They quickly dress up: the ballerina in her partner's clothes, the latter in female dress, Zina in one of her friend's theatrical costumes. To add to the fun, the tractor driver puts on a dogskin. All is ready. Now Galya admits that the accordionist has invited her to a rendezvous too.
This revelation threatens to ruin their carefully laid plans, but the trac tor driver comes to the rescue. He suggests to Galya that she should meet the accordionist as the latter had proposed, but that he, the tractor driver, disguised as a dog, will not allow the accordionist to approach her. His plan is agreed. Galya, attended by Kolka-‘the dog', waits for the accordionist. He appears and is much put out by the uncalled-for presence of the dog which seems very fierce and keeps on attacking him. Finally, the accordionist realizes he is being made a fool of but, taking it in good part, he joins in the main plot.
The elderly dacha dweller turns up, wheeling a bicycle. He wants to make a good impression on the ballerina and has donned sporting gear. He is festooned with a gun, ammunition belt and telescope. The thought of the forthcoming meeting excites him. His wife turns up at the same spot. She is wearing ballet shoes to surprise the male dancer. It is time to put the plan in action. Suddenly, the dacha dweller catches sight of his beautiful ballerina , his Sylphide, in the middle of a clump of trees. It is in fact the ballerina's partner, in female garb, but the old man does not notice this. His wife, who is observing him, objects to his flirting and chases off her husband. But she, in turn, is frightened by the tractor driver who, still in his dogskin, is riding the bicycle. Appearing in her partner's costume, the ballerina mocks the dacha dweller's wife. Finally, they both run off.
Enter Pyotr, the agricultural student. He is waiting for the dancer from the distant capital, but instead, he is met by his own wife, disguised as the dancer. He fails to recognize her. Joking and flirting with him, Zina disappears into the bushes. This lyrical scene gives way to slapstick. The old dacha dweller and male dancer disguised as the ballerina now come running in. ‘Romantic passions' reach an all-time high. The ballerina, dressed in male clothing, comes out from behind the bushes, and makes a scene. She demands satisfaction from the dacha dweller. There follows a comic duel. The first to fire is the disguised bal lerina. She misses. Now the old dacha dweller is handed a pistol. Though he is frightened, he takes aim. Simultaneously, Gavrilych bangs a pail, and the old man thinks he has fired. Immediately the ballerina's partner falls to the ground as though shot. The horrified dacha dweller takes to his heels. No sooner has he disappeared, than the ‘victim' comes to life and dances amid the laughter of the delighted plotters.

Scene 4
The beginning of the morning of the following day. The harvest festival. In the meadow, an improvised stage for the artistes. All the seats are taken. Pyotr, the agricultural student, is waiting on tenterhooks for the show to begin so that he can see the ballerina whom (he thinks) he met last night in the woods.
But to his great astonishment two dancers, dressed exactly alike, appear on stage, their faces hidden by masks. Their dance over, Pyotr, unable to restrain himself, rushes towards them. They raise their veils and the secret is out. Pyotr, who sees one of the ballerinas is his wife, timidly begs her forgiveness. Eventually they are reconciled. Pyotr has learnt his lesson: he now knows that his modest Zina is both a first-class worker and a marvelous ballerina. The fes tival ends with a general dance in which alt young and old take part, togeth er with the guest artistes.

New Stage

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Giacomo Puccini
Opera in four acts
Libretto by Domenico Oliva, Marco Praga, Giuseppe Giacosa, Luigi Illica, Ruggero Leoncavallo, and Giulio Ricordi based on the novel L"histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut by Abb? Pr?vost
Music Director: Jader Bignamini
Director: Adolf Shapiro
Designer: Maria Tregubova
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Choreographer: Tatiana Baganova
Premiered on October 16, 2016

SYNOPSIS

Act I
A public square in Amiens

Students enjoy the summer evening in the town square. One of them, Edmondo, sings a madrigal of youthful pleasure, hoping to attract the young women. They ask a brooding Des Grieux to join them, and to prove he is not cynical about love, he gallantly flirts with a group of girls with mock courtesy. As they all celebrate in the street, a carriage arrives at the inn carrying Geronte, Lescaut and his sister Manon. Des Grieux is struck by Manon"s beauty and shyly approaches her. She is called inside by her brother, but has been won over by Des Grieux"s words, and they make plans to meet later.
Geronte discusses Manon"s future with Lescaut. The family wants her to take the veil, but Lescaut has other ideas for her future, namely a match with the older Geronte (along with whatever benefits he may glean from the rich treasury official). The two men agree to meet for dinner, and Lescaut then joins a card game with the students. Edmondo overhears Geronte making plans to take Manon to Paris. He tells Des Grieux and agrees to help prevent this from happening.
Manon and Des Grieux meet as agreed and express their mutual attraction. He warns of Geronte"s plan to abduct her, so they run away together. Geronte is affronted, but Lescaut advises him to be patient, for he knows his sister"s expensive tastes will soon exhaust a student"s income.

Act II
An elegant room in Geronte"s house in Paris

As Lescaut predicted, Manon is now Geronte"s mistress and prepares for the day, aided by a hairdresser. When Lescaut arrives, she asks about Des Grieux, recalling their once-passionate affair. When speaking to Des Grieux, Lescaut has been vague about Manon"s whereabouts, but encouraged him to become a gambler so that he may acquire enough wealth to keep her in the style she requires.
Geronte has arranged a reception with musicians, who sing a madrigal in Manon"s honor. A dancing master teaches the minuet, but in spite of all the finery, Manon is bored with her new life. Realizing that she is unhappy, Lescaut privately decides to fetch Des Grieux. The guests depart for a stroll down the esplanade, and Manon promises to join them later.
Des Grieux appears at the door. He berates her lack of fidelity, but in begging forgiveness, she softens his resolve. Geronte returns and is thunderstruck to find them in each other"s arms. Manon counters his deriding remarks by holding a mirror to his face, reminding him of his advanced age. Threatening revenge, he leaves the couple alone.
Lescaut soon enters, breathless. Geronte has summoned the authorities, denouncing Manon"s lack of morality. Before fleeing with Des Grieux, she gathers her expensive jewelry, but that delay proves costly - the guards arrive and arrest her for thievery.

Act III
A square near the harbor in Le Havre

Manon is being held in the barracks, awaiting deportation to America with a group of prostitutes. Lescaut has bribed one of her jailors, and he and Lescaut wait for the changing of the guard to effect her escape. She is made aware of the plan while sharing a brief moment with Des Grieux. A shot betrays their scheme. Manon and the other prisoners are then led one-by-one to a ship while the onlooking townspeople make wicked comments as each one passes by. Des Grieux begs the captain to be hired as a deckhand, and he agrees to take the infatuated young man on the voyage to the New World.

Act IV
A wilderness on the edges of the Louisiana Territory

After troubles with the colonial governor, the two lovers are forced to make an escape. Manon is destitute and very weak. She sends Des Grieux ahead to look for water and shelter. When he returns it is too late. She dies believing that time will cleanse her of any sin, and he is left with nothing but memories of their too brief time together.

The Main Stage

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

Comic ballet in two acts
Libretto by Adrian Piotrovsky and Fyodor Lopukhov
Choreographer: Alexei Ratmansky
Designer: Boris Messerer
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Alexander Rubtsov
Premiered on April 18, 2003.
Presented with one interval.
Running time: 2 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS (HISTORICAL TEXT)

Act I
Scene 1

A small wayside halt, in the steppes, on one of the branch lines of the North Caucasian Railway. Early autumn. The local collective farms have completed both their harvesting and autumn sowing.
A brigade of artistes from one of the capital's theatres is due to arrive in the region to take part in the harvest festival, marking the end of the field work. Some members of the nearest collective farm, The Bright Stream, have come to the halt to welcome their guests. They include the collective farm activist, Gavrilych, who, though advanced in years, is full of the joys of life and a general favorite; the school-girl Galya, and some of her friends, with a bunch of flowers for the artistes; Pyotr, an agricultural student and his wife Zina, a local amusements' organizer. The last to arrive are two dacha dwellers: an elderly man and his anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is wife. Both of the latter, bored to tears, have come to gawk at the visiting artistes. While waiting for the guests to arrive, the dreamy and thoughtful Zina buries her head in a book. Her husband, Pyotr, who is of a cheerful, buoyant disposition, tries to distract her, inducing the others to share in his efforts. Eventually all, except Zina, proceed to the platform. The excited crowd returns, together with the artistes - a ballet dancer, her partner and an accordion-player.
The amusements' organizer, Zina, hails the ballet dancer who stops in her tracks. They recognize each other as old friends, for they once studied togeth er at ballet school. Since then Zina has married Pyotr, the agricultural student, and has gone to work with him on the collective farm where no one has any idea that she used to be a dancer. The two friends, who have remained alone, gaze at each other with curiosity.
The ballerina asks if Zina has forgotten her dancing. But, living in the country, she has not forgotten her dancing skills and intends to prove it. The two friends, compete with each other, trying to see who can remember the most of their former lessons. Gavrilych and Pyotr now appear: they have come to fetch Zina and the ballerina. Zina introduces her husband to the ballerina. Dazzled by the ballerina, Pyotr begins to court her. The latter feels her first pang of jealousy.

Scene 2
The day is on the wane. Encamped among the golden sheaves of wheat, a field workers' brigade from The Bright Stream collective farm joyfully makes plans for tomorrow, which is to be a day of festival. The artistes' brigade arrives. Gavrilych presents them to the field workers' brigade.
The two brigades greet each other. An improvised celebration gets under way. The artistes display the presents they have brought with them for distri bution to the collective farm's best shock workers. There is a gramophone for Gavrilych, a silk dress for the best milkmaid. The prizewinners are lustily congratulated, and the jollity merges into a dance. The first to break into a dance are the grey-haired, bearded ‘inspectors of quality' and their Gavrilych.
The dacha dwellers turn up, late as usual. They are forced to trip a measure and, by way of a joke, they dance an ancient Chaconne. Then comes a number by some young girls, members of an amateur group organized by Zina. But it is the milkmaid who is the center of attention: they want to see her dance in her smart, new dress. The milkmaid dances with the tractor driver. The merriment increases. Gavrilych winds up his new gramophone and asks the guest artistes to dance.
Not wishing to disappoint the collective-farm workers, the artistes agree though they dislike the idea of dancing in their ordinary clothes. They improvise a dance among the wheat sheaves. Their dance gets a mixed reception. The farm workers watch it with pleasure, but the dacha dwellers only have eyes for the artistes themselves (the husband is taken by the classical ballerina, while his wife is attracted by the ballerina's partner). Zina is jealous of her husband. Pyotr, the young agricultural student, is more and more enchanted by the ballerina who seems so brilliant and talented by comparison to his modest, unassuming wife.
The accordionist is asked to join in the dancing with schoolgirl Galya. Now some young field workers from Kuban and the Caucasus burst into a gay, warlike dance which enthralls all present. The merriment reaches its height. Eventually, the assembled company is invited to partake of refreshment. As all make their exit, the old dacha dweller manages to whisper in the visiting ballerina's ear that he would like to see her again, his wife makes a similar proposal to the latter's partner. Meanwhile, Pyotr goes off with the ballerina. Zina is totally distraught, she even starts to cry. The young people, together with Gavrilych, try to calm her down. But now the ballerina returns and assures Zina that she has no intention of flirting with the latter's husband. She suggests that Zina tell the young people that she too used to be a dancer.
Zina agrees and again the two friends dance together. There is general astonishment. The ballerina proposes that a joke be played on Pyotr and the others: she will dress up in her partner's costume and go and meet the anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is dacha dweller's wife. Her partner, made up as a female dancer, shall go to the rendezvous with the old dacha dweller. While Zina shall go to meet her husband in the ballerina's costume. The plan is approved.

Act II
Scene 3

A warm, southern night. A clearing, surrounded by bushes and trees. The young people have assembled. The dacha dwellers turn up too, late as usual. The accordionist has taken a fancy to Galya, the schoolgirl, who had danced with him so merrily earlier in the day. He whispers to her that he will soon be back and that she should wait for him. Galya is quite taken aback. The old dacha dweller, his wife and Pyotr remind their ‘sweethearts' of their trysts. The young people are now determined to teach them a lesson. They quickly dress up: the ballerina in her partner's clothes, the latter in female dress, Zina in one of her friend's theatrical costumes. To add to the fun, the tractor driver puts on a dogskin. All is ready. Now Galya admits that the accordionist has invited her to a rendezvous too.
This revelation threatens to ruin their carefully laid plans, but the trac tor driver comes to the rescue. He suggests to Galya that she should meet the accordionist as the latter had proposed, but that he, the tractor driver, disguised as a dog, will not allow the accordionist to approach her. His plan is agreed. Galya, attended by Kolka-‘the dog', waits for the accordionist. He appears and is much put out by the uncalled-for presence of the dog which seems very fierce and keeps on attacking him. Finally, the accordionist realizes he is being made a fool of but, taking it in good part, he joins in the main plot.
The elderly dacha dweller turns up, wheeling a bicycle. He wants to make a good impression on the ballerina and has donned sporting gear. He is festooned with a gun, ammunition belt and telescope. The thought of the forthcoming meeting excites him. His wife turns up at the same spot. She is wearing ballet shoes to surprise the male dancer. It is time to put the plan in action. Suddenly, the dacha dweller catches sight of his beautiful ballerina , his Sylphide, in the middle of a clump of trees. It is in fact the ballerina's partner, in female garb, but the old man does not notice this. His wife, who is observing him, objects to his flirting and chases off her husband. But she, in turn, is frightened by the tractor driver who, still in his dogskin, is riding the bicycle. Appearing in her partner's costume, the ballerina mocks the dacha dweller's wife. Finally, they both run off.
Enter Pyotr, the agricultural student. He is waiting for the dancer from the distant capital, but instead, he is met by his own wife, disguised as the dancer. He fails to recognize her. Joking and flirting with him, Zina disappears into the bushes. This lyrical scene gives way to slapstick. The old dacha dweller and male dancer disguised as the ballerina now come running in. ‘Romantic passions' reach an all-time high. The ballerina, dressed in male clothing, comes out from behind the bushes, and makes a scene. She demands satisfaction from the dacha dweller. There follows a comic duel. The first to fire is the disguised bal lerina. She misses. Now the old dacha dweller is handed a pistol. Though he is frightened, he takes aim. Simultaneously, Gavrilych bangs a pail, and the old man thinks he has fired. Immediately the ballerina's partner falls to the ground as though shot. The horrified dacha dweller takes to his heels. No sooner has he disappeared, than the ‘victim' comes to life and dances amid the laughter of the delighted plotters.

Scene 4
The beginning of the morning of the following day. The harvest festival. In the meadow, an improvised stage for the artistes. All the seats are taken. Pyotr, the agricultural student, is waiting on tenterhooks for the show to begin so that he can see the ballerina whom (he thinks) he met last night in the woods.
But to his great astonishment two dancers, dressed exactly alike, appear on stage, their faces hidden by masks. Their dance over, Pyotr, unable to restrain himself, rushes towards them. They raise their veils and the secret is out. Pyotr, who sees one of the ballerinas is his wife, timidly begs her forgiveness. Eventually they are reconciled. Pyotr has learnt his lesson: he now knows that his modest Zina is both a first-class worker and a marvelous ballerina. The fes tival ends with a general dance in which alt young and old take part, togeth er with the guest artistes.

New Stage

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Manon Lescaut (Opera by Giacomo Puccini)

Giacomo Puccini
Opera in four acts
Libretto by Domenico Oliva, Marco Praga, Giuseppe Giacosa, Luigi Illica, Ruggero Leoncavallo, and Giulio Ricordi based on the novel L"histoire du chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut by Abb? Pr?vost
Music Director: Jader Bignamini
Director: Adolf Shapiro
Designer: Maria Tregubova
Lighting Designer: Damir Ismagilov
Chief Chorus Master: Valery Borisov
Choreographer: Tatiana Baganova
Premiered on October 16, 2016

SYNOPSIS

Act I
A public square in Amiens

Students enjoy the summer evening in the town square. One of them, Edmondo, sings a madrigal of youthful pleasure, hoping to attract the young women. They ask a brooding Des Grieux to join them, and to prove he is not cynical about love, he gallantly flirts with a group of girls with mock courtesy. As they all celebrate in the street, a carriage arrives at the inn carrying Geronte, Lescaut and his sister Manon. Des Grieux is struck by Manon"s beauty and shyly approaches her. She is called inside by her brother, but has been won over by Des Grieux"s words, and they make plans to meet later.
Geronte discusses Manon"s future with Lescaut. The family wants her to take the veil, but Lescaut has other ideas for her future, namely a match with the older Geronte (along with whatever benefits he may glean from the rich treasury official). The two men agree to meet for dinner, and Lescaut then joins a card game with the students. Edmondo overhears Geronte making plans to take Manon to Paris. He tells Des Grieux and agrees to help prevent this from happening.
Manon and Des Grieux meet as agreed and express their mutual attraction. He warns of Geronte"s plan to abduct her, so they run away together. Geronte is affronted, but Lescaut advises him to be patient, for he knows his sister"s expensive tastes will soon exhaust a student"s income.

Act II
An elegant room in Geronte"s house in Paris

As Lescaut predicted, Manon is now Geronte"s mistress and prepares for the day, aided by a hairdresser. When Lescaut arrives, she asks about Des Grieux, recalling their once-passionate affair. When speaking to Des Grieux, Lescaut has been vague about Manon"s whereabouts, but encouraged him to become a gambler so that he may acquire enough wealth to keep her in the style she requires.
Geronte has arranged a reception with musicians, who sing a madrigal in Manon"s honor. A dancing master teaches the minuet, but in spite of all the finery, Manon is bored with her new life. Realizing that she is unhappy, Lescaut privately decides to fetch Des Grieux. The guests depart for a stroll down the esplanade, and Manon promises to join them later.
Des Grieux appears at the door. He berates her lack of fidelity, but in begging forgiveness, she softens his resolve. Geronte returns and is thunderstruck to find them in each other"s arms. Manon counters his deriding remarks by holding a mirror to his face, reminding him of his advanced age. Threatening revenge, he leaves the couple alone.
Lescaut soon enters, breathless. Geronte has summoned the authorities, denouncing Manon"s lack of morality. Before fleeing with Des Grieux, she gathers her expensive jewelry, but that delay proves costly - the guards arrive and arrest her for thievery.

Act III
A square near the harbor in Le Havre

Manon is being held in the barracks, awaiting deportation to America with a group of prostitutes. Lescaut has bribed one of her jailors, and he and Lescaut wait for the changing of the guard to effect her escape. She is made aware of the plan while sharing a brief moment with Des Grieux. A shot betrays their scheme. Manon and the other prisoners are then led one-by-one to a ship while the onlooking townspeople make wicked comments as each one passes by. Des Grieux begs the captain to be hired as a deckhand, and he agrees to take the infatuated young man on the voyage to the New World.

Act IV
A wilderness on the edges of the Louisiana Territory

After troubles with the colonial governor, the two lovers are forced to make an escape. Manon is destitute and very weak. She sends Des Grieux ahead to look for water and shelter. When he returns it is too late. She dies believing that time will cleanse her of any sin, and he is left with nothing but memories of their too brief time together.

The Main Stage

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

The Bright Stream (Ballet by Dmitry Shostakovich)

Comic ballet in two acts
Libretto by Adrian Piotrovsky and Fyodor Lopukhov
Choreographer: Alexei Ratmansky
Designer: Boris Messerer
Music Director: Pavel Sorokin
Lighting Designer: Alexander Rubtsov
Premiered on April 18, 2003.
Presented with one interval.
Running time: 2 hours 5 minutes.

SYNOPSIS (HISTORICAL TEXT)

Act I
Scene 1

A small wayside halt, in the steppes, on one of the branch lines of the North Caucasian Railway. Early autumn. The local collective farms have completed both their harvesting and autumn sowing.
A brigade of artistes from one of the capital's theatres is due to arrive in the region to take part in the harvest festival, marking the end of the field work. Some members of the nearest collective farm, The Bright Stream, have come to the halt to welcome their guests. They include the collective farm activist, Gavrilych, who, though advanced in years, is full of the joys of life and a general favorite; the school-girl Galya, and some of her friends, with a bunch of flowers for the artistes; Pyotr, an agricultural student and his wife Zina, a local amusements' organizer. The last to arrive are two dacha dwellers: an elderly man and his anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is wife. Both of the latter, bored to tears, have come to gawk at the visiting artistes. While waiting for the guests to arrive, the dreamy and thoughtful Zina buries her head in a book. Her husband, Pyotr, who is of a cheerful, buoyant disposition, tries to distract her, inducing the others to share in his efforts. Eventually all, except Zina, proceed to the platform. The excited crowd returns, together with the artistes - a ballet dancer, her partner and an accordion-player.
The amusements' organizer, Zina, hails the ballet dancer who stops in her tracks. They recognize each other as old friends, for they once studied togeth er at ballet school. Since then Zina has married Pyotr, the agricultural student, and has gone to work with him on the collective farm where no one has any idea that she used to be a dancer. The two friends, who have remained alone, gaze at each other with curiosity.
The ballerina asks if Zina has forgotten her dancing. But, living in the country, she has not forgotten her dancing skills and intends to prove it. The two friends, compete with each other, trying to see who can remember the most of their former lessons. Gavrilych and Pyotr now appear: they have come to fetch Zina and the ballerina. Zina introduces her husband to the ballerina. Dazzled by the ballerina, Pyotr begins to court her. The latter feels her first pang of jealousy.

Scene 2
The day is on the wane. Encamped among the golden sheaves of wheat, a field workers' brigade from The Bright Stream collective farm joyfully makes plans for tomorrow, which is to be a day of festival. The artistes' brigade arrives. Gavrilych presents them to the field workers' brigade.
The two brigades greet each other. An improvised celebration gets under way. The artistes display the presents they have brought with them for distri bution to the collective farm's best shock workers. There is a gramophone for Gavrilych, a silk dress for the best milkmaid. The prizewinners are lustily congratulated, and the jollity merges into a dance. The first to break into a dance are the grey-haired, bearded ‘inspectors of quality' and their Gavrilych.
The dacha dwellers turn up, late as usual. They are forced to trip a measure and, by way of a joke, they dance an ancient Chaconne. Then comes a number by some young girls, members of an amateur group organized by Zina. But it is the milkmaid who is the center of attention: they want to see her dance in her smart, new dress. The milkmaid dances with the tractor driver. The merriment increases. Gavrilych winds up his new gramophone and asks the guest artistes to dance.
Not wishing to disappoint the collective-farm workers, the artistes agree though they dislike the idea of dancing in their ordinary clothes. They improvise a dance among the wheat sheaves. Their dance gets a mixed reception. The farm workers watch it with pleasure, but the dacha dwellers only have eyes for the artistes themselves (the husband is taken by the classical ballerina, while his wife is attracted by the ballerina's partner). Zina is jealous of her husband. Pyotr, the young agricultural student, is more and more enchanted by the ballerina who seems so brilliant and talented by comparison to his modest, unassuming wife.
The accordionist is asked to join in the dancing with schoolgirl Galya. Now some young field workers from Kuban and the Caucasus burst into a gay, warlike dance which enthralls all present. The merriment reaches its height. Eventually, the assembled company is invited to partake of refreshment. As all make their exit, the old dacha dweller manages to whisper in the visiting ballerina's ear that he would like to see her again, his wife makes a similar proposal to the latter's partner. Meanwhile, Pyotr goes off with the ballerina. Zina is totally distraught, she even starts to cry. The young people, together with Gavrilych, try to calm her down. But now the ballerina returns and assures Zina that she has no intention of flirting with the latter's husband. She suggests that Zina tell the young people that she too used to be a dancer.
Zina agrees and again the two friends dance together. There is general astonishment. The ballerina proposes that a joke be played on Pyotr and the others: she will dress up in her partner's costume and go and meet the anxious-to-be-younger-than-she-is dacha dweller's wife. Her partner, made up as a female dancer, shall go to the rendezvous with the old dacha dweller. While Zina shall go to meet her husband in the ballerina's costume. The plan is approved.

Act II
Scene 3

A warm, southern night. A clearing, surrounded by bushes and trees. The young people have assembled. The dacha dwellers turn up too, late as usual. The accordionist has taken a fancy to Galya, the schoolgirl, who had danced with him so merrily earlier in the day. He whispers to her that he will soon be back and that she should wait for him. Galya is quite taken aback. The old dacha dweller, his wife and Pyotr remind their ‘sweethearts' of their trysts. The young people are now determined to teach them a lesson. They quickly dress up: the ballerina in her partner's clothes, the latter in female dress, Zina in one of her friend's theatrical costumes. To add to the fun, the tractor driver puts on a dogskin. All is ready. Now Galya admits that the accordionist has invited her to a rendezvous too.
This revelation threatens to ruin their carefully laid plans, but the trac tor driver comes to the rescue. He suggests to Galya that she should meet the accordionist as the latter had proposed, but that he, the tractor driver, disguised as a dog, will not allow the accordionist to approach her. His plan is agreed. Galya, attended by Kolka-‘the dog', waits for the accordionist. He appears and is much put out by the uncalled-for presence of the dog which seems very fierce and keeps on attacking him. Finally, the accordionist realizes he is being made a fool of but, taking it in good part, he joins in the main plot.
The elderly dacha dweller turns up, wheeling a bicycle. He wants to make a good impression on the ballerina and has donned sporting gear. He is festooned with a gun, ammunition belt and telescope. The thought of the forthcoming meeting excites him. His wife turns up at the same spot. She is wearing ballet shoes to surprise the male dancer. It is time to put the plan in action. Suddenly, the dacha dweller catches sight of his beautiful ballerina , his Sylphide, in the middle of a clump of trees. It is in fact the ballerina's partner, in female garb, but the old man does not notice this. His wife, who is observing him, objects to his flirting and chases off her husband. But she, in turn, is frightened by the tractor driver who, still in his dogskin, is riding the bicycle. Appearing in her partner's costume, the ballerina mocks the dacha dweller's wife. Finally, they both run off.
Enter Pyotr, the agricultural student. He is waiting for the dancer from the distant capital, but instead, he is met by his own wife, disguised as the dancer. He fails to recognize her. Joking and flirting with him, Zina disappears into the bushes. This lyrical scene gives way to slapstick. The old dacha dweller and male dancer disguised as the ballerina now come running in. ‘Romantic passions' reach an all-time high. The ballerina, dressed in male clothing, comes out from behind the bushes, and makes a scene. She demands satisfaction from the dacha dweller. There follows a comic duel. The first to fire is the disguised bal lerina. She misses. Now the old dacha dweller is handed a pistol. Though he is frightened, he takes aim. Simultaneously, Gavrilych bangs a pail, and the old man thinks he has fired. Immediately the ballerina's partner falls to the ground as though shot. The horrified dacha dweller takes to his heels. No sooner has he disappeared, than the ‘victim' comes to life and dances amid the laughter of the delighted plotters.

Scene 4
The beginning of the morning of the following day. The harvest festival. In the meadow, an improvised stage for the artistes. All the seats are taken. Pyotr, the agricultural student, is waiting on tenterhooks for the show to begin so that he can see the ballerina whom (he thinks) he met last night in the woods.
But to his great astonishment two dancers, dressed exactly alike, appear on stage, their faces hidden by masks. Their dance over, Pyotr, unable to restrain himself, rushes towards them. They raise their veils and the secret is out. Pyotr, who sees one of the ballerinas is his wife, timidly begs her forgiveness. Eventually they are reconciled. Pyotr has learnt his lesson: he now knows that his modest Zina is both a first-class worker and a marvelous ballerina. The fes tival ends with a general dance in which alt young and old take part, togeth er with the guest artistes.

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