Kiev National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet

15.02.16
Kiev National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet

Almost every Kiev city tour brings visitors to busy Volodymyrs’ka and Bohdana Khmelnytskoho streets crossing where the Kiev Opera House is situated. However, this is not just one of plenty places to see in Kiev, but it is also worth visiting.

Photo: National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine

The history of the National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine started in 1867 when numerous petitions addressed to the government yielded the creation of a regular opera troupe in Kiev, which was then one of the significant centers of the Russian empire. However, the present appearance of this magnificent construction was preceded by a misfortune. The original building was burned down in February of 1896, after the morning performance of ‘Eugene Onehin’ by P. Tchaikovsky, when one of the dressing rooms went on fire. The fire spread in a matter of seconds and in a few hours the building constructed according to the project of architect Ivan Shtrom was burnt down to cinder.

Photo: National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine
The present building was constructed by outstanding architect Victor Schroeter at the intersection of two busy roads and was inaugurated on September 16, 1901. The intrigued audience dressed in their Sunday best came to the long-awaited opening. The new appearance of the theater truly fascinated the imagination of the contemporaries: half-oval facade richly decorated with stucco work and narrow, deep arches raise the construction upwards. The interior looked impressive with Venetian mirrors, gilding, bronze, patterned stucco of walls and ceilings, marble stairways and mosaic floors, elegant velvet armchairs and subtle Viennese lamps and the queen-lamp in the middle of the patterned ceiling.

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Photo: National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine
More than fifty operas and ballets are included in the theater repertoire today. One can enjoy the masterpieces of world-known maestros such as Rossini, Donizetti, Gounod, Cimarosa, Khachaturian, Skorulsky, Puccini, Ravel, Bizet and Minkus, as well as discover the creations of the most famous Ukrainian and Russian composers: Lysenko, Gulak-Artemovsky, Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Borodin, Liatoshynsky, Mussorgsky and Prokofiev.

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 Photo: Ballet ‘Romeo and Juliet’, O.Orlova, National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine
Along with classical performances such as ‘The Swan Lake’ and ‘The Nutcracker’, the ballet troupe of the Kiev National Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet staged plenty of contemporary pieces. In 1971 renowned choreographer Anatoly Shekera staged ‘Romeo and Juliet’, which is still included in the repertoire, for the first time. This performance is awarded with the UNESCO medal as the best interpretation of the Shakespeare’s work.

Contacts
50 Volodymyrska str., Kyiv
http://www.opera.com.ua/en
Box office
Open daily from 11am till 7.30pm
(till 7pm on Monday)

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