Czech choreographer Jiri Kylian’s contemporary ballet masterpiece ‘Falling Angels’ has its world premiere at the Astana Ballet Theater

NUR-SULTAN – Eight ballerinas took to the stage of the Astana Ballet Theater on April 1 to perform in the Kazakh premiere of “Falling Angels” – a choreographic miniature, one of Czech choreographer-philosopher Jiri’s most famous works Kylian.

“Falling Angels” choreographed by Jiri Kylian. Photo credit: Astana Ballet Theater

The ballet, accompanied by Steve Reich’s drum composition, features eight ballerinas and eight different women. Kylian explores different facets of female sensuality through her eclectic choreography.

According to the main soloist Tatyana Ten, the dance was interesting and complex, requiring very good physical shape and a very good performance, because the ballerinas do not leave the stage for the entire duration of the ballet, which is 15 minutes.

Ten said Kylian’s genius comes through in his particular choice of plastic. “I’ve danced Kylian’s repertoire before. These are his masterpieces “La petite mort” and “Symphony of Psalm”. The three ballets (including ‘Falling Angels’) use completely different plastics,” she said.

Kylian’s phenomenal musicality also shines through in “Falling Angels.” “Throughout the ballet, we rely on ourselves to get into our individual rhythms. Listening to the music, you pick up your own accent in the music, a certain rhythm for each solo performer,” Ten said. The dancers practiced using only the count-in for several weeks, before adding the music.

The Astana Ballet Theater has a distinctive cast of fine, classically trained dancers, who were highly regarded by Kylian’s choreographer-director and assistant Stefan Zeromski.

“Each of the eight parts of ‘Falling Angels’ is a different type of woman, a different character. When casting the roles, we made sure the dancers not only matched the steps and choreography, but also the type of character. which matched the initial group of women, who danced in the first cast,” Zeromski said.

What viewers should expect, Zeromski said, is that Kylian is very musical and has prepared a certain idea for the dance, but it’s also important to leave some mystery.

“Everyone will find something for themselves. The idea is not completely spelled out, everyone will come up with their own interpretation,” Zeromski said.

Astana Ballet Theater director Alexandr Sovostyanov said it took more than a year and a half to stage ‘Falling Angels’.

“Not all theaters have the right to stage such works, which are considered modern classics. They make a serious analysis of the troupe before authorizing the staging of the ballet. We are very happy to be on the list of top theaters allowed to stage such masterpieces,” he said.

“Falling Angels” was first created in 1989 and is part of Kylian’s “The Black and White Ballet” series.

Kylian is a world renowned choreographer, who has staged over 100 works, 77 of which have been performed at the Nederlands Dans Theater, where he worked as a director for almost a quarter of a century.

His works are often characterized by surrealism and minimalism and have been considered masterpieces of contemporary choreography. Kylian has been recognized around the world and has received numerous awards, the most recent being his investiture as a member of the prestigious Académie des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

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