On November 30, The Firebird one-act ballet, a production by the Leonid Yacobson Theatre in collaboration with the prominent European choreographer Douglas Lee, premièred to a full house at the main venue of the Alexandrinsky Theatre.
The show was preceded by a welcoming address by Alexander Govorunov, vice-governor of St. Petersburg, and the Yacobson Theatre's art director, Andrian Fadeev. The new performance programme, dedicated to the 50th anniversary season of the famous troupe (which was founded by Leonid Yacobson, a truly remarkable choreographer), serves as an excellent example of how Yacobson's ballet innovations have been preserved and interpreted by the new generations.
The first two parts of the show present a refreshing, refurbished take on Leonid Yacobson's masterpieces, beautifully restored by the professional masters of choreography and set design, who have kept the daring spirit of Yacobson's productions intact. This has to be one of the reasons why the avant garde body language of dancers performing The Firebird is such an organic continuation of the legendary 20th century ballet master's ground-breaking experiments with choreography. Both the general audience and the experienced ballet connoisseurs have been left in awe by the virtuoso-level skills of the dancers, who had to become acquainted with the completely unfamiliar neoclassical techniques within a limited period of time. The original costumes by the ingenious Eva Adler and lighting by the charismatic Sakis Birbilis have been found equally impressive. The critics have been especially appreciative of the powerful energy that seemed to sweep over the auditorium in mighty waves at the especially dramatic plot points. The show's producer, Douglas Lee, in turn, speaks highly of the youthful ballet troupe's creative potential, mentioning that he might return again to replicate the collaboration's success.