The world premiere of the dramatic ice performance Romeo and Juliet, directed by Ilya Averbukh, took place at the Iceberg Ice Palace.
The performance became very long-awaited for the Sochi public - long before the premiere, all the seats for the first performances were sold, there was not a single free seat in the hall. Ilya Averbukh invited 7 Olympic champions at once, and each of them had their own memorable role. Tatiana Totmianina and Maxim Marinin played Romeo and Juliet, Alexey Yagudin and Roman Kostomarov played Mercuzzio and Tybalda, Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov played the prince and princess of Verona. Ilya Kulik's appearance was greeted with loud applause. Olympic champion Nagano has lived in the United States for a long time, but despite this, his brilliant performance became one of the main sensations of the evening and was warmly received by the Russian public.
For more than six months, the team of Ilya Averbukh was preparing this grandiose project for release, and the lion's share of this time was occupied by the script - "transferring Shakespeare's tragedy to skates." We also worked hard on the musical accompaniment. The production uses works by Sergei Prokofiev, Mozart, Bach, Mendelssohn and original music created by the leading composer of Russian musicals, Roman Ignatiev. The project involved 22 long-distance athletes, 14 ice ballet dancers, 5 vocalists, 10 ballet dancers, 5 musicians. The skaters were trained by professional fencers, choreographers and acting teachers. The stunningly beautiful costumes were created by a whole team of artists - in total, more than 160 costumes were sewn. More than 150 people work in the creative and technical group of the performance.
From the very first minutes, the action unfolding on the stage captured the hall, and then the intensity of passions was steadily increasing. Juliet's appearance in the middle of the first act was greeted with an already enthusiastic roar. But the main surprise awaited the audience at the end. To bow, the skaters went out on the ice barefoot, taking off their stage costumes and remaining in ordinary clothes. In such a symbolic way, the director decided to show "real life" without embellishment. The audience, already inspired by the performance, greeted such "removal of masks" with a flurry of applause, the audience applauded standing for more than 10 minutes.
Ilya Averbukh: “It was important for me not to retell the story written by the great Shakespeare, but rather to show all the hidden lines of the text, to tell the story the way I see and feel it. And we are not talking about literal transposition of the original text at the feet of athletes. The performance has its own idea, which we reveal at the very end.
Everything that happens on the ice is a game. But there is a real life between rehearsals, even between outings on the ice, and everyone lives it in their own way. But what I have become convinced of over the years of work is that everyone is driven by love and this is the main theme of the performance!"
In the future, the artists will perform 58 more times on the Iceberg Olympic ice - guests and residents of Sochi will be able to see the production of Romeo and Juliet until October 1.