LIFE / CULTURE
National Ballet of China to perform in June as cultural events return to Beijing
Published: Jun 08, 2022 10:33 PM Updated: Jun 08, 2022 10:30 PM
Poster of Dunhuang Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China
Poster of Dunhuang Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China


 
Poster of Onegin Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China
Poster of Onegin Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China


 
Poster of Giselle Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China
Poster of Giselle Photo: Courtesy of National Ballet of China


 After Beijing announced the reopening of cultural venues on Monday, the National Ballet of China (NBC) also announced new performances at the National Centre for the Performing Arts to kick off its latest performing season. Three performances, Dunhuang, Onegin, and Giselle will be performed from June 9 to 19, covering realist and romantic ballet.

For ballet dancers, although performances were halted over the past month, rehearsals continued under strict COVID-19 prevention and control measures and closed loop management.

"Only you can tell if you don't practice for a day, but after three days everyone in the audience will be able to tell" is a saying prevalent among dancers.

Dunhuang
The ballet dance Dunhuang follows researchers' life-long efforts to protect and study the ancient art of Dunhuang. The performance uses dance to depict the many difficulties young cultural workers overcame to protect China's cultural heritage.

The performance not only pays tribute to workers dedicated to cultural relic protection, but also recreates the splendid Dunhuang frescoes on stage so audiences may enjoy a breathtaking combination of ancient art visuals and modern ballet.

Onegin
Based on the novel Eugene Onegin by Alexander Pushkin, the ballet is a reflection of Russian social life in the 1820s. The story depicts the awakening of the young generation of that era, and raises many important social issues.

The performance tells the story of the arrogant and cynical aristocratic youth Onegin, who doesn't know about true love and coldly rejects the courtship of the innocent country girl Dagiana. When the two meet again many years later, Dagiana has become a duchess and rejects Onegin's love for her.

The performance breaks from the stylized expression of classical ballet. Through silent dance, it ingeniously depicts the inner emotions of the characters and their development. As early as 2021, this performance also evoked a wave of adoration among audiences in Beijing.

Giselle
This ballet is one of the oldest and the most staged French romantic ballets. It tells the tragic story of a simple country girl, named Giselle, who dies of a broken heart when she discovers her lover Albrecht is engaged to someone else. Returning to haunt him, she joins the ghostly ranks of the Wilis (abandoned brides who rise from the grave to prey on the men who wronged them). But finally, Giselle chooses to protect Albrecht with love and forgiveness.

Global Times