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Swan Lake ballet. History of the legend

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Every connoisseur of beauty from childhood is familiar withThe ballet of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky "Swan Lake". Perhaps, in Russia there is no musical theater, which did not engage in this production. The central party Odette-Odile danced the most outstanding Russian ballerinas - Ekaterina Geltser and Matilda Kshesinskaya, Galina Ulanova and Maya Plisetskaya, Ekaterina Maksimova and Nadezhda Pavlova and many others. However, at first the fate of the "Swan Lake" was developing far from cloudless.


Swan Lake ballet. History of the legend
The idea of ​​staging the ballet "Swan Lake" belonged to the director of the Moscow Imperial troupe Vladimir Petrovich Begichev. He invited Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky as a composer.

The plot was based on the old GermanThe legend of the beautiful princess Odette, whom the evil sorcerer Rothbart turned into a white swan. In the ballet, young prince Siegfried falls in love with the beautiful swan-girl Odette and swears to keep her faithfulness. However, at a ball arranged by the queen mother in order for Siegfried to choose a bride, the insidious Rothbart appears with his daughter Odile. The black swan Odile is a double and, at the same time, Odette's antipode. Siegfried involuntarily falls under the spell of Odile and makes her an offer. Realizing his mistake, the prince runs to the shore of the lake to ask forgiveness from the beautiful Odette ... In the original version of the libretto, the tale turns into a tragedy: Siegfried and Odette die in the waves.

At first Odette and Odile were completely differentCharacters. But, working on the music of the ballet, Tchaikovsky decided that the girls should be original twins, which leads Siegfried to a tragic mistake. Then it was decided that Odette and Odile must be played by the same ballerina.

First setbacks

Work on the score continued from the spring of 1875On April 10, 1876 (this date is indicated in the score by the hand of the composer himself). However, rehearsals on the stage of the Bolshoi Theater began even before the end of the composition of music, March 23, 1876. The first choreographer of the Swan Lake was the Czech choreographer Julius Wenzel Reisinger. However, the play, premiered on February 20, 1877, was not successful and, after 27 performances, disappeared from the stage.

In 1880 or 1882 the Belgian choreographerJosef Hansen decided to resume the production. Despite the fact that Hansen slightly changed the dance scene, in fact, the new version of "Swan Lake" differed little from the previous one. As a result, the ballet was shown only 11 times and, it would seem, forever went into oblivion and oblivion.

Birth of a legend

October 6, 1893, and without waiting for the triumphHis creation, Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky died in St. Petersburg. In memory of him, the Petersburg Imperial troupe decided to give a grandiose concert consisting of fragments of various works by the composer, including the second act of the unsuccessful ballet Swan Lake. However, the chief choreographer of the theater Marius Petipa did not undertake to stage scenes from a deliberately flop ballet. Then this work was entrusted to his assistant Lev Ivanov.

Ivanov brilliantly coped with theHis task. It was he who managed to turn Swan Lake into a legend. Ivanov gave the second act of ballet a romantic sound. In addition, the choreographer decided on a revolutionary step for that time: he removed the artificial wings from the swans' suits and gave the movements of their hands a resemblance to the wings of the wings. Then the famous "Dance of the Little Swans" appeared.

The work of Lev Ivanov produced the strongestImpression on Marius Petipa, and he suggested to the choreographer to put together the full version of the ballet. For the new edition of "Swan Lake" it was decided to rework the libretto. This work was commissioned by Modest Ilyich Tchaikovsky. However, changes in the content of the ballet were not significant, and the finale remained tragic.

January 15, 1895 at the Mariinsky Theater inThe premiere of the new edition of the ballet "Swan Lake" was held in St. Petersburg. This time, the production was waiting for a triumphant success. It was the version of Petipa - Ivanov that began to be considered classical and, to this day, lies at the heart of all the performances of Swan Lake.

Today, "Swan Lake" is considered a symbolClassical ballet and does not leave the stage of the leading theaters of Russia and the world. It should also be noted that most modern ballet productions have a happy ending. And this is not surprising: "Swan Lake" is a beautiful fairy tale, and fairy tales should end well.

Swan Lake ballet. History of the legend Was last modified: July 5th, 2017 By Sibpyyqx
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