Saturday, 9 April 2016
The Fountain of Bakhchisarai
The Fountain of Bakhchisarai (Russian: Бахчисарайский фонтан) is a Russian ballet inspired by the 1823 poem by Alexander Pushkin of the same title. With music by Boris Asafyev and choreography by Rostislav Zakharov, the ballet premiered in Saint Petersburg, (then Leningrad) in 1934 at the Kirov Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet (now the Mariinsky Theatre).
Bakhchisarai is in the Crimea, near Yalta. Bakhchisarai Palace was originally built in the sixteenth century and has been repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt since. The fountain, which actually exists, is called the Fountain of Tears.
In the film version the roles were danced by Galina Ulanova as Maria, Maya Plisetskaya as Zarema, Pyotr Gusev as Khan Girey, and Yuri Zhdanov as Vaslav. This is the only known footage of Ulanova and Plisetskaya, who succeeded Ulanova as prima ballerina assoluta of the Bolshoi Theatre, dancing together.