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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

Love and freedom are two qualities we're supposed to fight, even die, for. Combine those with the French Revolution and a Bolshoi ballet and you know you're set for an evening of passion and supreme mastery.

The Flames of Paris will be screened at K Cinplex Nicosia, Limassol, Larnaca and Paphos tomorrow, as performed by the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow.

This famous production of the two-act ballet, set during the French Revolution, and choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky travels back to the origins of the ballet, first performed in 1932, to revive some of the most stunning pas de deux. As the dancers move to the music, based on the songs of the French Revolution, by Boris Asafiev, love and freedom flow into one liberating dance movement.

Act one is set in Marseille, where a battalion is making its way to Paris. Jerome (Denis Savin) and his sister Jeanne (Margarita Shirainer) encounter the Marquis Costa de Beauregard (Semyon Chudin) with his daughter, Adeline (Ana Turazashuvili), along the way. The Marquis makes advances towards Jeanne. When Jerome comes to his sister's defence he is arrested. Adeline frees Jerome, which makes Marquis furious enough to send his daughter away to Paris with her keeper (Irina Zibrova). Once in the city, Marquis and Adeline go to a court ballet where King Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette make their entrance.

Act two opens in a square in Paris. The battalion from Marseille signals the start of the assault on the Tuileries. Suddenly, Jerome catches sight of Adeline and rushes over to her and they declare their love for each other. Her sinister keeper spies on their meeting. After a volley of cannon firing, the crowd dashes off to storm the Tuileries and takes the palace, led by Jeanne. Members of the new government mount the Tribune. The president of the Convention unites the hands of Jeanne and Philippe, the first young newlyweds of the new Republic. In the distance the muffled thuds of the falling knife of the guillotine is heard. In order to get revenge, her keeper reveals Adeline's true origins and so, the crowd demands her death.

The story was adapted from a book by Felix Gras and the ballet was premiered at the Kirov Theatre in Leningrad on November 7, 1932. The Bolshoi Ballet premiered the full work on July 6, 1933 at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow.

Flames of Paris

Screening of the opera by the Bolshoi Ballet. May 6. K Cineplex Nicosia, Limassol, Larnaca and Paphos. 7.30pm. e1/48/10. Tel: 77-778383

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Publication:Cyprus Mail (Cyprus)
Geographic Code:4EXRU
Date:May 5, 2018
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