The renowned Moscow Festival Ballet returns to Harris Center for the Arts, Feb. 4 to 6, to perform one of the most popular classical ballets of all time, “Swan Lake.”
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“Swan Lake,” a ballet composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky in 1875, is fashioned from Russian folk tales and tells the story of Odette, a princess turned into a swan by an evil sorcerer’s curse.
“Swan Lake” is one of the most technically and emotionally challenging classical ballets. Its music far exceeded its time — many of its early performers claimed it was too difficult and complex to dance to. Little is known of its original production but its revised production by the famous choreographers Petipa and Ivanov is the base of the many versions performed today.
Artistic Director Sergei Radchenko, the former principal dancer of the Bolshoi Ballet, has fused the highest classical elements of the great Bolshoi and Kirov Ballet companies into the Moscow Festival Ballet.
Leading dancers from across Russia have come together to forge this exciting new company under Radchenko’s direction, staging new productions of timeless classics such as “Giselle,” “Don Quixote,” “Paquita” and “Carmen” with great success.
The Moscow Festival Ballet has also performed with great success in Turkey at the Istanbul Festival and in Greece at the Athens Festival and recently completed a two-month tour of Japan, Korea, Singapore and Hong Kong.
In addition to commissioning new works from within Russia and abroad, the company specializes in 20th century full-length ballets such as “Cinderella,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “Legend of Love,” “Stone Flower” and “The Golden Age.”
Born in 1944, Sergei Radchenko graduated from the Moscow School of Dance in 1964 and then joined the Bolshoi Ballet, where he worked for 25 years.
He danced the entire repertoire at the Bolshoi but enjoyed a special reputation for Spanish dance, particularly the role of the bullfighter in the Bizet-Schedrin “Carmen Suite.”
He is the founder and artistic director of the Moscow Festival Ballet and has achieved a remarkable feat in the establishment and development of this young-but-great Russian ballet company.
Radchenko presents a large number of master-classes, inviting leading teachers from the Bolshoi and Maryinsky theaters to ensure the continuation of the rich traditions of the Russian classical school.
The “Moscow Festival Ballet: Swan Lake” will be presented on Tuesday, Feb. 4 at 7:30 p.m.; Wednesday, Feb. 5 at 2 p.m.; and Thursday, Feb. 6 at 7:30 p.m. Performances will be at the Harris Center, 10 College Parkway in Folsom.
Tickets are $29 to $49 and premium tickets are $59, children and students with ID are $25. Tickets are available online at harriscenter.net or from the Harris Center ticket office at 916-608-6888 from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and two hours before show time. Parking is included in the price of the ticket.