The Mariinsky Ballet is also known outside Russia as the Kirov Ballet, its Soviet name, but inside the company’s homeland it is today called by its original name of the Ballet Company of the Mariinsky Theatre.
The Mariinsky Ballet Company is closely linked with the entire history of Russian choreographic art which began some 250 years ago.
Beginning in 1783, the company performed at the St. Petersburg Bolshoi (Stone) Theatre, but from 1885 onwards, ballet productions have been staged at the Mariinsky Theatre.
In 1869, the position of principal ballet master was entrusted to Marius Petipa who markedly raised the professional standards of the company. The greatest accomplishments of this famous master were his ballets staged in collaboration with composers Pyotr Tchaikovsky and Alexander Glazunov -The Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake and Raymonda – and the talents of many generations of ballerinas have been revealed in them.
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