Subscribers to the Bolshoi Theater official channel on YouTube will be treated to a series of broadcasts of the theater’s “gold collection” performances from April 15 to May 11, 2020, in association with Google.
The series to be broadcasted will include recordings of 5 ballets; Le Corsaire, Spartacus, A Hero of our time, The Bright Stream, Don Quixote, operas Katerina Izmailova and Sadko, as well as a Concert of soloists of the Bolshoi Opera.
Each performance is expected to begin at 7 p.m. Moscow time and will remain online for 24 hours after the initial premiere.
According to Vladimir Urin, General Director of the Bolshoi Theater the decision to go this route was informed due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic which has forced spectators to stay at home.
“Since we cannot restore the theater’s normal operation yet, and our beloved spectators are forced to isolate themselves, we decided to continue broadcasting our performances on the Internet. Obviously, it brings great joy to people. I want to highlight two events here – two anniversaries, which we will celebrate virtually. First, on April 18 we will show Spartacus ballet, on the day of the 80th anniversary of Vladimir Vasiliev, the People’s Artist of the USSR and the first performer of the role of Spartacus. We were going to spend a gala evening in the theater, but life adjusted our plans. The good thing is that online the whole world will be able to celebrate the anniversary of one of the greatest ballet dancers in history. Second, the opera “Sadko” by Rimsky-Korsakov, the latest premiere on the Historical Stage of the Bolshoi Theater, will be shown on the birthday of the director Dmitry Chernyakov, who will be celebrating his half-century anniversary on May, 11” he said.
On her part, Julia Solovieva, Head of Google Russia expressed her excitement on the role technology is playing in bringing the beauty of Russian ballet and opera to the world.
“Today, everyone who continues to stay at home needs additional resources, and classical art, such as ballet and opera, is one of the best streams of good emotions and balance. I think more than 380 thousand people who in recent weeks subscribed to the Bolshoi Theater channel on YouTube and left more than 60 thousand comments there would agree with this. I am sincerely proud that today our technologies help bring the beauty of Russian ballet and opera to audiences around the world” she added.
François Duplat, Chief Executive Officer, CEO of Bel-Air Media is no less effusive.
In his words, “Due to the current painful and sad circumstances surrounding the Coronavirus epidemic, which has affected all of us and everywhere, on behalf of Bel-Air Media, I am pleased to make a small contribution to supporting the Bolshoi through the broadcasts of the wonderful performances that we recorded in recent years. I hope this brightens up the need to stay at home for spectators who, through our joint work, will see high-quality recordings of exceptional productions of the Bolshoi Theater. I hope that soon the Bolshoi will open its doors again, and we, in turn, will be able to continue to shoot its magnificent productions and delight the audience with a meeting with their favorite opera and ballet artists,” he added.
Also speaking, Thierry Fontaine, President of Pathé Live one of the digital partners of The Bolshoi Theatre is excited about the prospect while looking forward to the resumption of actual performances at the Theatre.
“As the producer and worldwide distributor of the Bolshoi Ballet in cinema series, Pathé Live, in association with Bel Air Media, is enthusiastic about the Theatre’s initiative. These 4 ballets are some of the Bolshoi’s most emblematic productions and are among the greatest successes of our broadcasts in cinemas. We feel this is the best way to remain in touch with ballet lovers as cinemas are forced to close all over the world. We hope this opportunity will bring comfort to our audiences during these challenging times, and look forward to meeting everyone again in cinemas once this is behind us” said Thierry Fontaine, president of Pathé Live” he said
Also lending his voice to the issue, Herve Boissiere, Chief Executive Officer, CEO of Mezzo expressed his happiness in being part of the project.
“For a few years already, Mezzo is very proud to be the partner of Bolshoi Theater, one of the greatest historical institutions in the musical world. We’re presenting regularly great opera productions, mostly live, and we have the honor to share them with viewers in more than 60 countries, spreading the best of Russian culture all over the world. We deeply thank Maestro Sokhiev and Mr. Urin for their talent, loyalty, and trust. During this unprecedented crisis, we are more than ever decided to support the complete Bolshoi Theater’s team and his amazing artists. See you soon on Mezzo and Mezzo Live HD and take care!” he added.
Recall that the first six shows of the “Bolshoi Online” project gained more than 6.5 million views in 2 weeks. From Swan Lake to The Nutcracker – online events brought to their monitors more than 3 million unique viewers from 134 countries: including Russia, the USA, Canada, Mexico, Hong Kong, Japan, Brazil, and others.