Ballet by Marius Petipa
New version by Ray Barra
Music by Alexander Glasunow
was created at the Imperial Maryinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg in January 1898. It is the last great work of the choreographer Marius Petipa, the creator of The Sleeping Beauty
, La Bayadère
, Don Quixote
and, together with Lew Ivanov, Swan Lake
and The Nutcracker
. With the brilliant score by Alexander Glasounov it attained equal artistic standard to the great Tschaikowsky ballets. When he created Raymonda
, Petipa was nearly eighty years old, a world famous artist in the eve of his creative life, while Alexander Glazunov was a young composer of thirty-two, who had already made a name for himself as a young genius. In close collaboration they created a late highlight of the glamorous tsarist ballet era in St. Petersburg, which is the base and core of our idea of ballet classicism.
The choreographer Ray Barra, who has already produced revised versions of Don Quixote
and Swan Lake
for the Bayerische Staatsballett, has now devised the production of Raymonda
. Again he has preserved the important choreographic tradition of Marius Petipa, while at the same time intensifying the dramatic action around the heroine. Raymonda is emotionally caught between two men: the crusader Jean de Brienne to whom she has been betrothed from childhood, and the Saracen Caliph of Cordoba Abderakhman who courts her and tries to elope with her. In a duel Abderakhman is killed by Jean de Brienne and the grand wedding festivities thereafter are the expected climax of the ballet. However, Raymonda will never forget her encounter with that disturbing erotic elemental force and the deep conflict of emotions she had to go through.