Category Archives: Blog

Swan Lake – behind the scene

It has been a week since the tour started. And it has been a great, extremely busy, stressful at times and rewarding week. With each production you tour with, you need to know and do different things. So you are adjusting and getting used to the dancers, technicians, being on the road and working on the go 24/7 during the first week.

Russian State Ballet and Opera Theatre of Komi have proven to the British audience that they can be just as graceful and beautiful on stage as any other top ballet companies. In the past week they have performed Swan Lake Ballet and am sure champagne and flowers will be received. 😉

Images from the rehearsals

Monday is usually a day off for people on tour. Not for people who are left in the office. On days off, the cast enjoy much rewarded sleep in and a walk around the town they are stopping at. Last Monday the dancers enjoyed the wonderful Nottingham city centre. What I personally like about Nottingham is that everything is near by. You can walk to most places. The cast will visit a few big cities like Manchester, Liverpool and of course London. London is always the favourite. Perhaps because its the city that always circulates in Russian text books while learning English.

As this is the first behind the scene post, we would love to know what in particular you are interested to know. Perhaps, the time of rehearing or a few videos taking with soloist dancers?

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What Sleeping Beauty is about

Hello and welcome back,

I hope you have enjoyed the last post about the story of Swan Lake. Sleeping Beauty is another wonderful ballet, however, it”s not as popular. I think people who have seen it appreciate the dance and the story behind it.

Sleeping Beauty which literally translates as “Beauty sleeping in the woods” was first performed in 1890. The music was written by Pyotr Tchaikovsky. The original choreographer was the brilliant Marius Petipa. The premiere of the fine ballet was performed in Mariinsky Theate in St. Petersburg. You will be surprised to know that Sleeping Beauty received a lot more applauds than Swan Lake. If you read our post about Swan Lake story  you would already know that Swan Lake was not well received at its premiere.  Sadly, Tchaikovsky passed away in 1893 as Sleeping Beauty became an instant success outside of Russia.

The story of Sleeping Beauty in my words.

The ballet opens us with the christening of Princess Aurora. When the party is in full swing the six fairies arrive to present their gifts for their goddaughter, the princess. The first five fairies give her gifts of honesty, beauty, prosperity, song and generosity. Suddenly the evil fairy Carabosse turns up without the invitation.

Of course the evil witch is angry that she has not been invited. As she is a horrible fairy (no wonder the King and the Queen didn”t invite her) her gift to princess Aurora is a curse. She will become the most beautiful princess in the world, but, having reached the age of sixteen, she will die from pricking her finger on a knitting needle. Fortunately, one of the fairies soften the spell – “Yes, you will fall asleep, sweet Aurora, but not forever. You”ll sleep a hundred years and you will be awakened by the kiss from Prince Charming.”

Sixteen years pass on and Princess Aurora is a beautiful young lady. There is a celebration in the castle to mark Aurora which opens up with a waltz. As always everyone is having a great time, dancing and celebrating.

An old woman gives Aurora a bouquet of roses, she accepts it and brings it with her in the dance.Generelt om Maria CasinoMaria casino pa nett er et friskt nettcasino som tilbyr sine kunder ekte casinounderholdning i toppklassen, og her finner vi spill fra flere sentrale aktorer. Suddenly her spinning stops. She looks at her hand, horrified to see blood. There was a needle hidden in the flowers!  The old woman drops her cloak and reveals herself as the evil Fairy Carabosse.

The Lilac Fairy (who soften the spell) tries to calm down the King and the Queen. She explains-  “In exactly a hundred years a handsome, loving prince will awaken her with his kiss.”  The Sleeping Princess, accompanied by the royal couple and court entourage, moves into the palace.

After one hundred years pass there is a Prince hunting animals in a nearby forest. Members of his court are looking out for the most beautiful girls in the country for their master, Prince Desire. So you probably guessed that the Fairy appears and tells the Prince of the beautiful Princess Aurora. The Prince is intrigued and immediately falls in love. After Prince finds Aurora, he rushes to the sleeping beauty and kisses her. Aurora wakes up, and with her the entire castle becomes alive. The Prince asks the Kind and the Queen of the Princess”s hand.

The magnificent wedding of Princess Aurora and Prince Désiré takes place.The kingdom is gathered in celebration. Amongst the many guest are all our beloved fairy tale characters; Princess Florine and the Bluebird, Puss in Boots and White Cat, Little Red Riding Hood and the wolf, Cinderella and Prince Charming, and Cannibal.

Aurora and Désiré are given gifts of diamonds, sapphires, gold and silver from the fairies. And of course, the Lilac Fairy is there as a symbol of the triumphant force of good.

THE END.

What a lovely story.  While I was writing this post I started to feel romantic and happy. If you have never seen Sleeping Beauty ballet you can come to any of our shows and I promise you, you will have a fantastic evening.

Click here to check dates and venues. Sleeping Beauty dates and venues.

We hope to see you at one of our shows this Autumn.

What Swan Lake is about

Hello all,

I thought it would be useful to write a post about the story of Swan Lake just in time for the weekend reading.  I am not afraid to say that Swan Lake is one of the most popular ballet of all times. Most people familiar with the story of the beautiful lady who turns into Swan by an evil curse. Not many people know that the ballet actually has two endings. The ‘happy’ ending and the ‘sad’ ending. I will tell you the story of ‘happy’ ending.

The legendary composer Tchaikovsky wrote the music for Swan Lake from 1875-1876. Most of the original work about the Swan Lake story has not survived so we can only assume that the story came from the Russian folktale.

The very first production of Swan Lake was performed on 4 March 1877. Unfortunately, the premie was not well received. Despite the  criticism the ballet continued to be performed .  A few years later Petipa decided to modify the choreography of Swan Lake and since then many other choreographers infused their own thoughts into the ballet. Slowly, Swan Lake became the world’s favourite ballet.

I won’t repeat myself in writing the Swan Lake synopsis in detail as it is already written on our website under the ‘Swan Lake performance’. I cannot help but mention the wonderful love story that Swan Lake has brought into our lives.

The Story in my words….

The ballet starts with Prince Siegfried’s birthday in his castle. As in most parties the guests are having a lovely time dancing. Siegfried’s mother reminds the Prince that there will be a ball tomorrow where he must choose the bride for himself. Of course, the young Prince is not happy about it as he is not in love and doesn’t even have a girlfriend. To take his mind of things he goes hunting. In the forest he notices swans flying in the skies. Prince Siegfried follows them to the lake. At the lake Prince sees the beautiful white swans swimming near the shore of the lake. The swans are cursed by an evil spell and only power of selfless love can break this evil spell.

Prince Siegfried notices the beautiful Swan (Odette) and is dazzled by her beauty. Later, she reviles to him that only everlasting love can break her spell. Siegfried promises to love Odette forever.

The next day the ball takes place in the queen’s castle. Prince is nowhere to be seen. When he eventually arrives he is presented with  the young girls from who he is to make a choice to be his bride. He dances with them only to satisfy his mother but his thoughts are all about Odette.

Suddenly an unknown knight arrives (disguised as the evil curse) and his beautiful daughter Odile. The Prince is confused as Odilie looks very much like Odette. Siegfried is fascinated by Odile and his doubts disappear. The father of Odile (evil curse) requests the Prince to prove the love for his daughter by swearing to love her eternally. As soon as he does that he sees a white swan in the window.

*Editor note- Odette has told the Prince when they met  that she can only become a human again if a man falls in love with her and chooses to be with her forever. The Prince to me is quite foolish not to question this when he sees Odilie.   

Siegfried realises that he became a victim of the evil curse. In despair, he rushes to the lake to see Odette.

The Prince appears at the lake and begs Odette’s forgiveness. He assures her of his strong and lasting feelings for her.

Suddenly Rothbart appears in a fury and recognises that the two of them realised what is going on. Siegfried invited Rothbart to fight him and he wins. The evil spell is broken straightaway and all the swans are changed into young girls.

LOVE wins over EVIL.

Stay with us and next week you can enjoy reading the story of Sleeping Beauty.

Sneak Peek: Swan Lake

Now that we are in September, its time to really focus on our upcoming Autumn Tour. From 6th October til the 15th December we will be bringing the world famous Russian State Ballet and Opera House to perform to UK audiences!

Today I thought I would share some of the pictures of the theatre HGH performing Swan Lake. I won”t share too many photos as I don”t want to spoil the surprise for those coming to the show…

Let me know which picture is your favourite! If you would like to find out which venues near you Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty will be visiting CLICK HERE.

Premiere of Russian State Ballet in UK

It’s now less then a month until our beautiful Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty tour kicks off in UK. I thought it would interesting to post some information about theatre that will be performing for thousands of people this Autumn.

The Russian State Ballet and Opera Theatre of Komi came to life in 1958, with the premiere of Tchaikovsky’s “Eugene Onegin” staged by Professor Leningad and composed by Alexander Kireev. The theatre is located in the Russian town of Syktyvkar which is the capital of a republic Komi just to the north of Moscow. Syktyvkar is perceived as an international centre for events in the cultural field. The theatre has developed into an arena for professionals performing a variety of cultural genres such as ballet, symphony orchestra, soloists and chorus. Consequently, the theatre boasts a mix of exciting production and staging. The repertory theatre delivers more than fifty performances a year from all genres of musical theatre: opera, ballet, operetta, musicals and children’s fairy tale.


Picture Source

The State Opera and Ballet Theatre of Komi Republic participate in cultural exchange, discovering the formation of aesthetic and cultural preferences of foreign audiences. Partnerships have been established with major European companies. As a result the theatre tours Western Europe: Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Spain, Portugal and Turkey. It also regularly tours Russia and Finland. The theatre regularly participates in various prestigious international projects.

Picture source 

We hope to see you at one of our many venues this Autumn.

Our 1st blog post

We have decided that now is the time to start writing a blog. We have a lot of new tours coming up and we would like you, readers, and fans to know a bit more about us and what we do. Facebook and Twitter is a great way to stay in touch but blog gives you that extra information that you may be looking for. I won’t go into detail about Amande Concerts as all the information is already on the website but instead I will provide details about our upcoming up tours and while we are touring you will know what goes on behind the scenes and much more.

It is now start of August and most people in England feel that they have been ‘robbed’ of summer. However, I have heard a rumour that September is going to be hot so let’s be optimistic and hope it will be. Before it does get hot, in the office this month we will be busy talking to national and regional newspapers about Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty.

A few months before the tour starts it’s always fascinating time. We try to do as much as you possible to inform people about the show in the lead up to the premiere. On average we have 40 venues, imagine talking to 10 or more newspapers in each venue! With a lot of organisation and good technology it is actually very rewarding when we see our show featured in the newspapers with a beautiful photo of the ballet.

#SwanLake 2012 tour.

Yours Sincerely,

Julia x