The Pharaoh's Daughter by Marius Petipa and Pierre Lacotte, music by Pugni
With Svetlana Zakharova (Aspicia) and Sergei Filin (Lord Wilson/Taor) – Bolshoi Ballet
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Marius Petipa — Choreographer
Alexander Rubtsov — Lighting
Svetlana Zakharova — Aspicia
Sergei Filin — Lord Wilson / Taor
Maria Alexandrova — Ramzé
Dimitri Gudanov — The Fisherman
Inna Petrova — The Fisherman's wife
Gennadi Yanin — John Bull / Passiphonte
Vladimir Moiseev — King of the Nile
Anastasia Yatsenko — Guadalquivir
Ekaterina Shilupina — Congo
Elena Andrienko — Neva
Pierre Lacotte's production for The Pharaoh's Daughter, initially choreographed by Marius Petipa, is here magnificently performed by the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow.
Choreographed by Marius Petipa after Théophile Gautier's Le Roman de la momie, The Pharaoh's Daughter encountered great success when it was first premiered in 1862, before it sank into oblivion during the 20th century, because it did not fit the criteria of the socialist realism that was in force during the Soviet Union. In 2000, Pierre Lacotte was invited to the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow to create a new rendition of the ballet, with new settings and new costumes.
This program filmed in 2003 stars the couple of Svetlana Zakharova and Sergei Filin. The dreams of opium, the Egyptian-inspired costumes, make-up and settings as well as the story itself drive the audience into an exotic world, just like in the Bayadère, which was premiered a few years later. This new choreography brings together extremely difficult variations for the soloists and great scenes with almost the totality of the Bolshoi Ballet's dancers. Cesare Pugni's music, finally, is performed with grace by the Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra, conducted by Alexander Sotnikov, who adapted the original score.
Picture © Damir Yusupov