"The Nutcracker" - the ballet test without conditions even for rehearsals
The National Ballet of Kosovo is preparing for one of the biggest projects at a time when it has not only been left without a home, but there are also no conditions for staging such a show with which it aims for another level. The state institution with Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker", one of the most popular and performed ballets, moves to a private hall on the outskirts of the capital. Space is also reserved for rehearsals.
For the Ballet troupe, it is an advantage that this time the rehearsal space is exactly a reflection of the scene for the premiere. "The Nutcracker" comes to Kosovo for the end-of-year holidays on December 16, an atmosphere that is also conveyed in the show.
The closure of the National Theater of Kosovo for renovation since July of last year led the performing arts institutions to improvisations with a hall and show. Theater and Ballet were given the Amphitheater in the Palace of Youth and Sports, but the facility of the national song and dance ensemble "Shota" also became a place for BKK rehearsals.
Even the performances that he performed, he mainly transformed into contemporary format performances by adapting them with a smaller number of performers, such as "Time" with choreography by Taulant Shehu and "Correr o Fado" with the Portuguese choreographer Daniel Cardoso
The classic "Nutcracker" is the contrast to these contemporary shows. Unlike the latter, where the Ballet had to adjust the number of dancers in certain scenes of the performance, the upcoming project bypasses the limits. The troupe has been completed with dancers from Tirana and Sofia, and recently auditions were held for young and professional dancers.
The mosaic of scenes from the show "The Nutcracker" has started to take shape. From the scenes in which it was worked, a harmonious spirit and very attractive play was observed. The choreography seems to be challenging and delicate, requiring precise movements.
When choreographer Ilir Kerni invites the dancers to perform certain pieces, some of them seem like a done deal. According to the choreographer from Albania, who has collaborated with the National Ballet of Kosovo for other shows over the years, the space of the National Theater of Kosovo, now with a temporary home in the Amphitheater, was narrow and in poor conditions.
"Obviously an opera and ballet theater will have to be built one day, I hope it will happen. However, this environment is very suitable for work. Quite different from the small hall he had in the Theater and with not very good conditions. In this regard, these conditions are very good".
The Kosovo Philharmonic will join the Ballet, when it will accompany the two acts and three scenes of "The Nutcracker" with Tchaikovsky's music. The show, according to Kern, comes even more complete in this form.
"This project is really big, on a scale that includes the Kosovo Philharmonic for the first time, so we will have a full show and we can say without fear that the metropolis of Kosovo, Prishtina, will have the show that is from the performed over the Christmas period across Europe and beyond. I am very happy to be a part of this giant project, I would say, because it includes several companies: the Ballet, the Philharmonic, there is scenography, costumes and others".
That this show requires a large space is shown when in some scenes the dances include large steps, spins and dynamic play. The number of dancers as far as it is now known that the Ballet will work in the show and others in the future, is another matter.
The dancer Fatmir Smani said that this time they have space to make the correct movements as on stage in front of the public.
"The conditions are much better. We have the space to just show it, to do the movements exactly as we should do them on stage. Then we had a very big change from the hall to the stage, now we are completely free. Except to think about our role and do it in the premiere and in the rerun".
In the show, the dancer Smani will play Herr Drosselmeyer, Klara's uncle, a role that will be played by the ballerina Jeta Musolli.
The "1 October" hall was the Ballet's choice for the premiere of the show. In a written answer, the director of the National Ballet of Kosovo, Sinan Kajtazi, has indicated that due to the ongoing renovations in the hall, the premiere there has been impossible.
For ballerina Aulonë Nuhiu, moving to a bigger hall was more than necessary. According to her, "at least the aspect of the stage is one less thing".
"One of the main reasons we came to this facility is the space. It is known that dancers always need a big hall and a big stage. It is very good that we started here, to acclimatize to a bigger space, as it is a very big show and requires a lot of dancers. I think that we will also have the stage in these dimensions of this hall. It is very good for us that at least these months we have our own place where we can hold the rehearsals".
In the play, the ballerina Nuhiu plays the role of Klara's friend and that of the Arab dancer who comes as a role in the second act.
The "Nutcracker" ballet, apart from the conditions, also challenged the institution in terms of the number of ensemble members. In addition to those invited, there is a need for other professional dancers and small ones.
Russian Tchaikovsky's 1892 Nutcracker is set on Christmas night in Nuremberg, Germany. Decorations are placed there, it is celebrated, gifts are given, and on the other side are the mysterious figures. When the decorations are removed, only one toy remains: a carved wooden nut. Everything then develops around her. "The Nutcracker" suite by the composer Tchaikovsky will be the second time that the Kosovo Philharmonic performs alongside the BKK. The orchestra also accompanied the performance "Halili and Hajrija" by Tish Daia last year, when the half century of the National Ballet of Kosovo was marked.
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