LNOBT Welcomes the Premiere of Michael Corder’s Ballet “The Snow Queen”
On 16, 17 and 18 May Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre is presenting its fifth premiere of the season – immensely beautiful and stylish ballet “The Snow Queen”, set to the music by Sergei Prokofiev and choreographed by one of today’s most famous choreographers Michael Corder. The production was first presented in 2007 by the English National Ballet company, and the current premiere in Vilnius is its first appearance outside of the UK.
"I’d had the idea of creating a ballet of ‘The Snow Queen’ for many years,“ – says M. Corder. “I had always thought Hans Christian Andersen’s original fairy tale beautiful and fascinating in its mythological feel and the way it deals with nature. For me, the key to creating this ballet was Sergei Prokofiev’s music for ‘The Stone Flower’, composed in 1948, as I had always loved Prokofiev’s music and had a special affection for this score in particular ever since I first heard it as a teenager. Listening to the score of ‘The Stone Flower’, I was free to make my own associations with this wonderful music. The various rustic, magical and wintry sounding elements in the score seemed to me to lend themselves completely naturally to the requirements of ‘The Snow Queen’ story. And so the idea stayed on the shelf until I felt the time was right to finally develop it as a full-length ballet.”
Michael Corder is one of the world’s leading classical choreographers and follows in a distinguished line of British dance creators that include Sir Frederick Ashton and Sir Kenneth MacMillan. He has been successfully making works for dance for four decades, and his ballets are in the repertoire of UK and foreign companies alike. Corder’s choreography is distinctively and fluently musical and he is not afraid to use the full range of the classical vocabulary as the foundation for each work he creates. Firmly believing in the institution of ballet and the creativity it can stimulate, the choreographer asserts he “loathes the attitude that classical ballet is an elitist art form with no relevance for today’s audiences and society in general.” This commendable devotion to his art means that Corder has become one of the most prolific and accomplished choreographers working today.
In Vilnius M. Corder is working together with trusted members of his creative team: music director and conductor Martynas Staškus, conductor Alvydas Šulčys, designer Mark Bailey (UK), lighting designer Paul Pyant and video designer Imantas Boiko. Sergei Prokofiev’s music was arranged by Julian Philips.
“The Snow Queen” enabled the whole ballet company of the LNOBT to take part in the production. Principal dancers include Anastasija Čumakova, Greta Gylytė, Rūta Juodzevičiūtė, Olga Konošenko, Erina Takahashi (Snow Queen), Stanislav Semianiura, Genadij Žukovsky, Andrius Žužžalkinas (Kay), Grytė Dirmaitė, Kritstina Gudžiūnaitė, Julija Turkina (Gerda) and others.