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Eifman Honors Blockade Survivors

Published: January 29, 2014 (Issue # 1795)



  • Boris Eifman's 'Requiem' at the Alexandrinsky Theater on Jan. 27.
    Photo: Yevgenia Matveeva

  • Boris Eifman's 'Requiem' at the Alexandrinsky Theater on Jan. 27.
    Photo: Yevgenia Matveeva

World War II veterans and survivors from the Siege of Leningrad were among the first to be invited to preview Boris Eifman’s ballet, "Requiem," which premiered at the Alexandrinsky Theater Monday night.

Dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the final lifting of the Siege of Leningrad, the performance was based on a poem by Anna Akhmatova’s set to music by Shostakovich and Mozart. Supporting the modern ballet performance was the Moscow Virtuosi chamber orchestra, led by renowned conductor Vladimir Spivakov and joined by the chorus and soloists from the Masters of Choral Singing.

Related: Eifman Academy holds auditions

President Vladimir Putin, who was in the city Monday to pay tribute to the victims of the siege, also made a brief appearance, attending the first act along with former St. Petersburg Governor and current Chairman of the Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko. Current St. Petersburg Governor Georgy Poltavchenko was also in the audience along with other city officials.

Performing to a full house, Eifman’s dramatic interpretation began with a one minute silence before then being presented in two acts — each exploring the themes of loss, love and triumph during the 872-day siege. True to form, the evening was a display of technical bravura that drew on all the elements for which Eifman is celebrated — lighting, sets and costumes, all of which explore psychological dimensions.

Related: City Remembers Siege of Leningrad

“I have never been so sincere, so spiritually naked as in Mozart’s Requiem,” said Eifman. “It is my past, present and future, whether you accept it or reject it. This is my memory, which brings an unprotected youth into the world, resurrects the ordeals of maturity, the wisdom and weakness of old age. How much viciousness, defamation, jealousy and violence my memory holds, how many never-fading touches of happiness, love… This is all inside me, inside each of us.”

The event, in addition to being dedicated to survivors of the siege, provided local residents the opportunity to remember and pay respect to the sacrifices made by those who perished while defending the city.

'Requiem' will be performed again at the Alexandrinsky Theatre on Feb. 10 and 11.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the club’s website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit “Neophobia” at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBA’s Marketing and Communications Committee’s round table discussion on “Government Relations Practices in Russia” this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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