Bucharest National Opera Ballet Company

The Romanian Opera House was established on April 1st, 1921. In 1924, Anton Romanovski moved to Romania and set up the first ballet company of the opera. The former prime-soloist of Polish origin had danced with Vaslav Nijinski, Anna Pavlova, Tamara Karsavina and Matilda Ksesinska. The first ballet performances staged by him are strongly influenced by the style of the choreographer Mihail Fokin.

In 1929 Vera Carally, graduate of the Imperial Ballet School from Moscow, former prime-ballerina at Balshoi Theatre and member of the "Russian Ballets", took over the company. She staged "Swan Lake" in 1932, by the initial choreography, with an entirely Romanian ensemble. In the same year, more Romanian ballets had their premiere: "At the market" and "Miss Mariuta" by Mihail Jora, "Wedding in the Carpathians" by Paul Constantinescu.

The first ballet master of the company was Floria Capsali, whose activity started in 1938. She expanded the number of dancers, promoted the young soloists in main roles, formed a generation of assistants and she closely took care of them. In works as "The Mystery” by Mihai Andricu, "Priculiciul” by Zeno Vancea or "The Carnival” by Robert Schumann, she created an original mixture of folklore and educated dance.

After the World War II, Russian ballet masters and choreographers were invited and they staged "The fountain of Baccisarai” by Boris Asafiev (c.: Seda Vasilieva),"Seherazade” by Rimski-Korsakov and "The red poppy” by Reinhold Glier (c.: Ivan Kurilor), "The copper horseman” by Reinhold Glier (c.: Igor Smirnov).

Starting with 1953, after the inauguration of the present-day theatre building, the repertoire was enriched with divertimentos from operas and dancing miniatures amounting to about 50 works in different styles, from academic to neoclassical and modern: "The Romanian Rhapsody” by George Enescu, "Prelude for the Afternoon of a faun” by Claude Debussy, "Rhapsody in blue” by George Gershwin, "Seherazade” by Rimski-Korsakov etc.

In 1957 Oleg Danovski restaged "Swan Lake", Tilde Urseanu staged "The Nutcracker", and Vasile Marcu staged "Giselle” by Adolphe Charles Adam, "Sleeping Beauty" by P.I. Ceaikovski and "Romeo and Juliet" by Serghei Prokofiev. Among the original choreographies there were: "Concert in F" by George Gershwin and "Fantastic Symphony" by Hector Berlioz with a choreography by Oleg Danovski, "The Cocked hat" by Manuel De Falla and "Seherazade" by Rimski-Korsakov with a choreography by Vasile Marcu, “Bolero” by Maurice Ravel, "Petruska" by Igor Stravinsky, "The Little Serenade" by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and "The unfinished symphony" by Franz Schubert with a choreography by Tilde Urseanu. In the same time, the repertoire of the ballet company promoted works such as: "The Outlaws" by Hilda Jerea with a choreography by Vasile Marcu, "Calin” by Alfred Mendelssohn with a choreography by Tilde Urseanu, "The Prince and the Bagger" by Laurentiu Profeta, "Nastasia” by Cornel Trailescu with a choreography by Oleg Danovski.

Due to their exceptional artistic performance appreciated on the occasion of their participation to international ballet contests or similar festivals and during the many long tours they made, some of the prime-soloists received the international recognition which situates them among the ballet stars: Irinel Liciu, Gabriel Popescu , Valentina Massini, Sergiu Stefanski, Magdalena Popa, Ileana Iliescu, Elena Dacian, Gheorghe Cotovelea, Marinel Stefanescu, Petre Ciortea, Ioan Tugearu, Rodica Simion.

Starting with 1965, after a tour in Paris with the work of Stere Popescu “The hammer without master" by Pierre Boulez, many ballet dancers chose to go on with their career abroad, working as ballet masters and teachers until today: Magdalena Popa, Sergiu Stefanski (Canada), Marinel Stefanescu, Stefan Banica, George Bodnarciuc (Italy), Pavel Rotaru, Marin Boeru (USA), Aurora Rotaru (Swede), Cristina Hamel, Florentina Cristali, Rodica Simion (Germany), Gelu Barbu (Spain), Gigi Caciuleanu, Ruxandra Racovitza (France).

Over the years, a great number of foreign famous dancers performed on the stage of the opera in Bucharest unforgettable performances: Vladimir Vasiliev, Ekaterina Maximmova, Mihail Baryshnicov, Maina Gielgud, Elisabeth Platel, Jean Guizerix, Willfried Piollet, Margot Fonteyn, Birgit Culberg, Mats Ek, Andrian Fadeev, Anton Bogov, Giuseppe Picone, Alina Cojocaru, Johan Kobborg. The faithful public of the ballet performances of the opera had the opportunity to applaud with admiration companies as Kirov Theatre, Balshoi Theatre from Moscow, Royal English Ballet in London, Hamburg Ballet, Miami Atlanta Ballet from USA, Culberg Ballet from Sweden, Opera from Athens, Komische Oper from Berlin, beside contemporary dance companies led by Gigi Caciuleanu, Karine Saporta and Josepj Nadj from France and Nederlands Dans Theatre.

After 1990, under the artistic management of Ioan Tugearu (1990-1993), of Ileana Iliescu (1993-2001), of Mihai Babuska (2001-2008) and of Gheorghe Iancu (2008-2009) the repertoire of the company included works such as: "Romeo and Juliet” by Serghei Prokofiev, "The Hunchback of Notre-Dame” (musical collage), "Anna Karenina” (collage from P.I.Tchaikovsky) with a choreography by Ioan Tugearu, "Sleeping beauty” by P.I.Tchaikovsky, "Carmina Burana” by Carl Off, "The Nutcracker" by P.I.Tchaikovsky, "Red and Black" by Livia Teodorescu with a choreography by Alexa Mezincescu, "Daphnis and Chloe” by Maurice Ravel with a choreography by Gelu Barbu, "La Bayadère” by Ludwig Minkus , "Le Corsaire" by Adolphe Charles Adam with a choreography by Marius Petipa, "Fantastic Symphony" by Hector Berlioz with a choreography by Gigi Caciuleanu, or the last productions: "Swan Lake” by P.I.Tchaikovsky and "Women” (musical collage) with a choreography by Gheorghe Iancu.

Starting with may 2009, the Bucharest National Opera ballet company is managed by Ph.D. Simona Somacescu.

Reply by ivelisse 2013-04-17 15:31:49
Hello. We will visit Bucharest from 2 June to 5 June and would like to know if you have any performances scheduled at that time. Or, if there is any other classical performances at that time. Regards, Ivelisse de Leon

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