Stabat Mater, Romeo and Juliet Kick-Start Brno Ballet in 2023

Romeo and Juliet returns to Janáček Theatre on January 19, 20, 27 and 28. Photo credit: NdB.

Brno, Jan. 12, 2023 (BD) – Stabat Mater, a triple-bill evening dedicated to Pavel Šmok, one of the most iconic figures of Czech ballet, returns to Mahen Theatre this week with performances on Friday and Saturday.

It is one of many performances in ballet, opera and theatre offered by the Brno National Theatre (NdB) this month, and every month throughout the year. Click here for more details and to order tickets.

Šmok (1927-2016) was a legendary Czech choreographer. Sabat Mater features three different performances of his choreographic vision. First, Verklärte Nacht (Transfigured Night) by Arnold Schoenberg is a score based on a poem by Richard Dehmel. Šmok sets the story of a pregnant Jewish woman in the post WWII era. She returns from a concentration camp and meets her new love, but he needs to know a secret from her past – she bears the child of another. Second, a dance will be performed to Trio in G Minor by Bedřich Smetana. In this piece, Smetana comes to terms with the death of his daughter, Bedřiška. Šmok follows the score order and adds to the musicality, transforming it into the urge to express hidden thoughts and emotions. The final performance is the cherry on top: Sabat Mater. It is one of Šmok’s most acclaimed works. It will be danced to the well‑known oratorio of the same name by Antonin Dvořák.

Romeo and Juliet returns to Janáček Theatre at the end of the month, with performances on January 19, 20, 27 and 28. The full-evening ballet retells the story of famous young lovers in a neo-classical choreography by Mário Radačovský. It is directed by Martin Glaser. Romeo and Juliet is one of the most beloved ballets in the NdB repertoire. It has a strong tradition, which started with it’s world premiere in Brno in 1938.

Further into 2023, there will be guest appearances by world-class principal soloists, who will perform alongside Ballet NdB. The first is Anastasiia Matviienko, the former Principal dancer of the legendary ballet theatre, Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg. After her stunning performance as Aurora in Sleeping Beauty this fall, Matviienko will return to star as Odette/Odile in Swan Lake on March 11.  

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