In the end of June 2012, in the end of the 81st theatre season, Samara Academic Opera House prepared a first night of the ballet “Romeo and Juliet” by S. Prokofiev. When it first appeared in 1936, this ballet really amazed the contemporaries by its brave choreographic embodiment of W. Shakespeare’s tragedy, as well as by sharp-conflict music, which is not typical for a ballet. It took a long time for rejection to be replaced by realizing the power of this music’s effect and triumphant recognition of this ballet by the public. The eternal story of Romeo and Juliet’s love has found a new choreographic embodiment on the stage of Samara Academic Opera House.
Conductor-Director – Eugene Khokhlov
Conductor - Honored Artist of Russia, People’s Artist of Republic of Belarus, awardee of the national theatre prize “Golden Mask”, awardee of the State Prize of Republic of Belarus Alexander Anisimov
Choreograph - Director – Distinguished Artist of Russia, awardee of the international ballet-masters contests, awardee of the Maurice Béjart’s prize Kirill Shmorgoner
Art Director – Distinguished Artist of Russia Felix Volosenkov (St Petersburg)
Lighting Designer – Roman Krikunov (Rostov-on-Don)
Assistant Ballet-Master – Distinguished Artist of Russia Elena Kamenskaya
Romeo wanders the streets of Verona, dreaming of love. There is a brawl between the Montagues and the Capulets, resulting in casualties. The Prince of Verona introduces capital punishment for armed conflicts within the city. Young Juliet prepares for the ball. Her mother wants her to behave like a lady. Paris and other guests go to the ball at the Capulets’. Benvolio and Mercutio persuade their friend Romeo to go there too, in disguise. Knights dance their intimidating dance at the ball, followed by Juliet’s charming appearance. Romeo is stunned by her beauty and wouldn’t hide his delight. His mask is dropped, and Juliet sees his face. Recognized by Tybalt, Romeo has to leave the enemy house.
Juliet dreams of Romeo at her balcony. He arrives there. They profess their love. Juliet’s Nurse brings Romeo a message from his sweetheart. Juliet has decided to be his. Romeo and Juliet come to Friar Laurence and get married. Friar Laurence hopes this marriage will help to reconcile the rival clans. Mercutio, Benvolio and other Montagues are confronted by Tybalt on a city square. Romeo tries to intercede, but Tybalt and Mercutio fight, and Mercutio gets killed. Infuriated, Romeo challenges Tybalt and kills him.
Romeo says farewell to Juliet: he is exiled from Verona. He leaves Juliet with the sunrise. Juliet meets her fiancé, Paris. She defies her parents’ will, but they insist. Juliet rushes to Friar Laurence for help. Moved by Juliet’s self-denying love for Romeo, Friar Laurence gives her a potion to fake her death. Their plan is to let Romeo recover Juliet from her family vault once her lifeless body is brought there. Back at home, Juliet drinks the potion. Her friends, family and fiancé think she is dead. Romeo comes to the Capulets’ vault unprepared. He doesn’t want to live without Juliet and poisons himself. Juliet wakes up to see him die. She kills herself with his dagger. The Montagues and the Capulets arrive and find their children dead. The two clans reconcile over the lovers’ bodies.
Composer – Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953). Based on the story of the tragedy of the same name by W. Shakespeare