Ballet in three acts and a prologue music by Ludwig Minkus
Don Quixote is one of the most life-affirming, colorful and festive ballets. It’s interesting that despite its name, this brilliant piece is not a stage version of the famous novel by Miguel de Cervantes, but an original choreographic work by Marius Petipa vaguely based on Don Quixote.
In 1869, the Moscow Bolshoi Theatre gave a première of the comic play staged by Marius Petipa to Minkus’s music, telling a story of the failed wedding of a young beauty and a rich nobleman, because of the true love of the heroine to a poor guy. In 1871, Petipa created a new version of the ballet for the première at the Bolshoi Kamenny Theatre in St. Petersburg. In 1900, a new production of Don Quixote was staged by Alexander Gorsky. Gorsky kept the scenario plan and, partly, Petipa’s choreography. Gorsky organized the crowd scenes in a new way to avoid “any symmetry”. Borrowing from the principles of theatrical aesthetics of the Moscow Art Theatre, Gorsky did much for the “revival” of academic ballet.
In 1902, the Gorsky’s production was shown at the Mariinsky Theatre. The stars of the imperial stage, as Mathilde Kschessinska (Kitri), Nicholas Legat (Basilio), Enrico Cecchetti (Sancho Panza) contributed to the success of this remarkable performance. The production became the classical one.
Running time — 3 hours
Tickets cost — 500 - 3500 roubles