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Bolshoi postpones ballet premiere after attack

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Published : 2013-02-03 19:52
Updated : 2013-02-03 19:52

MOSCOW (AFP) ― Russia’s Bolshoi ballet Friday postponed one of its most eagerly anticipated premieres of the year, a new version of Igor Stravinsky’s “The Rite of Spring,” after the acid attack on its artistic director Sergei Filin.

The Bolshoi had invited the British choreographer Wayne McGregor to choreograph an entirely new ballet to Stravinsky’s iconic score which this year marks 100 years since its premiere by the Ballet Russes in Paris.

The ballet was due to have premiered in late March in a festival of dance celebrating the 100th anniversary of the “The Rite of Spring,” the kind of innovative programming championed by Filin.

“The Bolshoi management and the stage team led by Wayne McGregor have taken a joint decision to postpone ‘The Rite of Spring’ as Sergei Filin is undergoing treatment,” the Bolshoi said in a statement.

It said that new dates for the production would be announced when Filin returns to work at the theater.

The “Rite of Spring” anniversary festival ― expected to include the celebrated companies of the late Pina Bausch and Maurice Bejart ― would still take place, it said.

Filin has undergone repeated operations to try and save his eyesight after an unknown attacker last month threw acid into his face. He is expected to go for further treatment next week in the German city of Cologne.

The management blamed the attack on internal conflicts in the theater which left Filin on the “front line” for months but investigators have yet to offer any insight on the progress of the case.

McGregor’s world premiere of his “The Rite of Spring” in Moscow was eagerly awaited after his abstract ballet “Chroma” proved a smash hit at the Bolshoi in 2011.

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