The Taming of the Shrew – a show of unity from the Bolshoi

When crisis hit the Bolshoi, choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot assumed his new production would be postponed. In fact, he tells Sarah Crompton, his ballet has united a divided company

““I’m a very happy man and I heard someone say the other day that happy people never change the world. That’s absolutely right. But they might just give you a reason not to want to die.” The choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot chuckles with pleasure at this pronouncement. He is talking about his version of The Taming of the Shrew for the Bolshoi Ballet – a transformation of Shakespeare’s play into a joy-filled and stylish dance drama. “It’s not Shakespeare’s play. It’s a ballet about the play,” he explains of the production, which is about to come to London as part of the Bolshoi’s summer season at Covent Garden.

Maillot, a 56-year-old Frenchman who has run the Ballets de Monte-Carlo as choreographer and director since 1992, couldn’t have taken on the project in worse circumstances. It was Sergei Filin, the Bolshoi’s then director, who tempted him to make a new ballet for the great Russian company; but in January 2013, just months before Maillot was due to arrive in Moscow, Filin had acid thrown into his face and was partly blinded. The attack was prompted by rivalries within the company, and opposition to Filin’s directorship.

Related: The Taming of the Shrew: ‘This is not a woman being crushed’

Related: Sergei Filin may be as much a victim of Bolshoi politics as acid attack | Judith Mackrell

Continue reading…
Source: Guardian Dance News

Share this post
Instep Dancewear