Libretto after Vladimir Begichev and Vasily Geltzer
The production features choreography by Marius Petipa, Lev Ivanov, Alexander Gorsky, and Asaf Messerer
Choreography and Staging: Nacho Duato
Stage and costume designer: Angelina Atlagić
Lighting Designer: Brad Fields
Musical Director of the production: Alevtina Ioffe
Stage Designer’s Assistant (sets): Magdalena Vlajić
Stage Designer’s Assistant (costumes): Srdjan Perić
ballet in three acts
music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Premiere of the production: 1 October 2021
Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato’s version of “the Russian stage’s foremost ballet” is more fantasy than fairy tale. “We are moving away from the romance of medieval castles and court rituals,” says the choreographer. “I want to create a more contemporary story, a profoundly emotional and human one. These emotions stem from the music of Tchaikovsky, but the setting will be the twentieth century. The artist Angelina Atlagic has devised fantastically beautiful costumes and an extremely elegant stage design.” Nacho Duato uses fragments of the classic choreography by Lev Ivanov and Marius Petipa in his production, but the final act will be something completely new. “The final scene may surprise audiences,” the choreographer hints. “I don’t want to give it away — better for everyone to interpret it in their own way. But if I’m asked whether there’s a happy ending, I’ll say this: the way I see it, there is.”
A garden by the lake. Prince Siegfried’s friends have gathered to celebrate his coming of age. In the midst of the feast, the Queen arrives: she gives the prince a crossbow as a present and informs him that tomorrow at the ball he must choose a bride among the invited princesses...
Moonlit night on the lake. Swans come ashore and the last to appear is Odette, the Swan Queen. She tells Siegfried that the evil wizard has turned them into birds and only at night, they can take on their human form. Only selfless love of a young man for Odette can break the spell. Siegfried swears his eternal love to Odette. Dawn breaks, Odette and Siegfried have to part for now.
Ball at the palace. Tonight Siegfried has to choose his bride. Guests gather for the celebration, but the prince himself is not there. When he finally arrives, the Queen invites him to make his choice. However, the prince has sworn his love to Odette and will be faithful only to her.
Suddenly fanfare heralds the arrival of new guests. It is Rothbart, accompanied by his daughter Odile — Odette’s lookalike. Odile must enchant Siegfried so that he confesses his love to her: this way, he will break the vow he made to Odette.
The prince mistakes Odile for Odette and announces his decision to marry her. Siegfried swears his love to Odile. Rothbart is triumphant.
Siegfried realizes that he has been deceived and hurries to the lake in despair.
Shore of the lake. The swan girls anxiously await Odette’s return. She appears to tell her friends about Siegfried’s betrayal. The girls are desperate.
Siegfried is looking for Odette to beg forgiveness for his mistake. He swore his love to Odile only because he mistook her for Odette. Rothbart’s arrival interrupts their date. Nevertheless, nothing can break the love of Odette and Siegfried: it is better to die than to surrender to Rothbart. Siegfried kills the evil wizard. The spell has been broken.