Children often become the most grateful spectators of the ballet - emotional sensitivity, impartiality and faith in miracles help them a great deal. Usually, you can take a first grader with you to the theater without any problem, but it is important to choose a performance by age and observe the rules of etiquette. Here we will tell you about 5 ballets that kids will definitely like.
The Sleeping Beauty, the Bolshoi Theater
The Sleeping Beauty by Tchaikovsky and Petipa has been the most ceremonial ballet in the repertoires of theaters since its creation to this day. The modern version at the Bolshoi was created by the choreographer Yuri Grigorovich, this is the third edition of The Sleeping Beauty in his career. He was working on the ballet together with the famous Italian set designer Ezio Frigerio. The invited artist wanted the scenery to take the audience into the historically accurate atmosphere of the 17th-18th century palace. As a result, the performance became a visual guide to the history of costume and architecture of that era. All the characters in the ballet are good, and the fairy Carabosse is ominously beautiful. By the way, this part is traditionally performed by men.
Children always get so delighted with the performance that they gladly come to The Sleeping Beauty again.
The Nutcracker, the Bolshoi Theater
The Nutcracker was premiered in 1892. Back then, Tchaikovsky's music seemed to the critics “not ballet”, too complicated and symphonic. Time has set things right: the authentic choreography of the first ballet has not survived, but the music is alive and considered by many to be genius.
Today at the Bolshoi Theater they perform The Nutcracker in the production by Yuri Grigorovich and musical version by Simon Virsaladze. In their version, the children's Christmas fairy tale has become deeper and more philosophical, filled with sadness about an unattainable dream. Now, the characters’ emotional experiences harmoniously echo the shrill and occasionally disturbing music by Tchaikovsky. Young spectators will see a fairy tale on the stage, and adults will probably experience a bright sadness for their departed childhood.
Swan Lake, the Bolshoi Theater
Swan Lake is a symbol of the ballet itself. The performance to the music by Tchaikovsky is based on an old knight’s tale. The children usually enjoy the plot, full of magical transformations, although originally it was not made for children. The philosophical meaning is the same as in The Sleeping Beauty - true love overcomes all the magic spells.
During a century and a half, the ballet has been edited many times, and not all versions were successful. Since 1969, the Bolshoi Theater has been given the production by Grigorovich and Virsaladze. The choreography was made almost anew, they left only the best of Alexander Gorsky and Marius Petipa, the former producers. The performance was freed from complex semantic build-up and sham. The plot became clear, and the sets and costumes - not literal, but rather intuitive.
Cinderella, the Mikhailovsky Theater
Cinderella at the Mikhailovsky Theater is a modern version of the 1945 production. The ballet still features the music by Sergei Prokofiev and the choreography by Rostislav Zakharov has been carefully preserved by the producer Mikhail Messerer. The classic “fairytale” scenography has become even more spectacular thanks to up to date interactive solutions.
To the delight of young spectators, the plot of their favorite fairy tale is completely recognizable, the characters are vivid and understandable. There are no multi-layered contradictory meanings: in the finale, good wins and dreams come true without any “buts”. Even adults leave the theater full of hope and wonder.
Cipollino, the Mikhailovsky Theater
Choreographer and producer Gennady Rykhlov invited Karen Khachaturyan to write the score for the ballet after he had heard the composer's music in the cartoon Cipollino. In collaboration of two talents, one of the best ballets for children was created. Today, at the Mikhailovsky Theater you can see the production of Cipollino by Genrikh Mayorov to the libretto by Rykhlov.
The performance is very bright and colorful, but tasteful at the same time. The scenography convincingly creates the atmosphere of a fantasy town invented by Gianni Rodari. At the same time, the choreography of the ballet is rather complicated, for which reason Cipollino is called the children's Spartacus. Dance vocabulary no worse than words is able to convey the idea of the value of real friendship to the children.