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Astana, Kazakhstan • 16 February, 2023 | 10:35
3 min read

The Call of the Steppe Ballet Returns to the Stage Transformed

The production will be presented on February 18 and 19

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Astana Opera

The Call of the Steppe returns to Astana Opera after three years, updated. The ballet about universal values and motivation to realize dreams and goals has become more mobile and universal thanks to the new vision of the choreographer Patrick de Bana. The spectacular production, in which the magic of life, power of love, and wisdom of ancestors are closely intertwined, will be presented on February 18 and 19, QazMonitor reports.

“Whenever I go back to the same production for the second time, normally there are always changes. For me, I call my ballets my babies. Therefore, I want them to have a full life. Time goes by, dancers change, and consequently, there is a need to renew the choreography as well. We still kept two acts, but together with the artistic director of the ballet company Altynai Asylmuratova we decided to make the production a little shorter and a little bit more compact,” choreographer Patrick de Bana said.

“Three years ago the premiere was a big success, which I am very happy about. Of course, I would like as many people as possible to see this ballet, including audiences abroad, as part of touring. Because this production represents Kazakhstan and fully conveys the beauty of this country,” the choreographer noted.

As a reminder, internationally acclaimed masters worked on the design of the production – set designer Ricardo Sánchez Cuerda and costume designer Stephanie Bäuerle. The set designer captured the aesthetics of the national style. He was inspired by the expanses of the Kazakh steppe and designed the sets in the first act realistically with beautiful nature imagery and a mausoleum. In the second act, the stage looks contrastingly futuristic. His colleague, costume designer Stephanie Bäuerle, created associative costumes for the animal characters and the shaman, original costumes for the female dancers in the scene where the sketches for the city are created, and the famous scene with briefcases, which are remembered by everyone who ever sees it. She also designed national costumes in an unusual way.

Astana Opera
Astana Opera

Patrick de Bana noted that this ballet would fit organically at a number of world opera houses.

“It would be convenient to go on tour to the Opéra National de Paris or to London’s Royal Opera House – these are big opera houses where there is enough space for these sets,” the choreographer concluded.

However, this ballet will be convenient for different stage venues, and understandable not only to the audiences of Paris and London. It is harmonious and easy to perceive anywhere in the world, because the plot touches on the themes of universal values, gives the viewers an opportunity to think about the meaning of life, motivates them to realize their dreams, and is also absolutely unique thanks to the original music and national zest.

The musical basis of the ballet is created from works by Kuat Shildebayev, Renat Gaissin, Tolegen Mombekov, and Carlos Pino-Quintana, as well as compositions from the repertoire of the folklore and ethnographic ensembles Turan, Hassak and the ethno jazz group Steppe Sons.

It is a well-known fact that music has always been a source of inspiration for artists. This ballet is no exception, and the national zest of the musical material completely captivates the dancers at rehearsals. On different days, February 18 and 19, brilliant dancers will take the stage. Thus, Galymzhan Nurmukhamet and Bekzat Orynbayev are preparing to perform the part of the Son/Master. The Muse – Aigerim Beketayeva and Anastasia Zaklinskaya. The Shaman – Sultanbek Gumar, Serik Nakyspekov. The Mother – Assel Shaikenova, Adelina Tulepova, Anel Rustemova. The Father – Olzhas Tarlanov, Zhanibek Akhmediyev, Zhanibek Imankulov. The Opponent – Yevgeniy Rybkin, Dias Kurmangazy, Oleg Leontiev, Sunggat Kydyrbay, and many others. The author of the adaptation of the choreographic libretto is Jean-François Vazelle.

The performances will begin at 5 pm.

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