The exhibition, featuring photography and video material of Vishneva's dancing, opens at the Museum of Theatre and Music Arts in St Petersburg tomorrow, June 22. The gala, with a program built around several contemporary dance productions, will take place at the Mariinsky Theater on June 23.
“I'm in no way trying to sum anything up with this exhibition. It's an attempt to talk about what interests me at this moment. Earlier this year, we showed Angelin Preljocaj's ‘Le Parc' at the Mariinsky Theater. I then went on to prepare ‘Lady of the Camellias,' one of my favorites. And now I'm focused on my work with the Martha Graham company.”
Vishneva, who has been dancing with the American Ballet Theatre since 2005, said she will present “Anna Karenina” at the Metropolitan Opera in New York in July, a new production that is dedicated to Maya Plisetskaya.
Vishneva's June 23 gala at the Mariinsky Theater will feature “Errand into the Maze,” choreographed by Martha Graham, one of the founders of contemporary dance. This will be the first showing of “Maze” in Russia.
Two years ago, I saw a performance of the Martha Graham company, and felt a strong affinity. I knew there were no classical dancers in her productions, so I was amazed when they invited me to work with the company for a whole season. For this reason I knew immediately that I wanted to perform something from the Graham repertory at my gala. It's so strange that productions by this extraordinary choreographer are still not presented in Russia.
The gala's program is built around contemporary dance pieces. According to Vishneva, this is because a classical image is too hard to present within the framework of a gala. She also believes that it is important that the Mariinsky Theater pays more attention to contemporary ballet.
The gala also features episodes from “Three Point Turn” by choreographer Dwight Rhoden, Angelin Preljocaj's “Le Parc,” and John Neumeier's “Lady of the Camellias,” among others. Vishneva will dance together with Roberto Bolle, Desmond Richardson, Benjamin Robert Schultz, and Vladimir Malakhov.
Desmond Richardson & Diana Vishneva in Three Point Turn – photo © & courtesy of Nina Alovert
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.