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Anna Karenina

OpernhausFalkenstrasse 1, Zürich, 8008, Switzerland
November 15 20:30, November 20 19:00, November 27 19:00, November 29 14:00, December 04 19:00, December 11 20:00, December 12 19:00
Performers
Ballett Zürich
Paul ConnellyConductor
Jörg ZielinskiSet Designer
Emma RyottCostume Designer
Christian SpuckSet Designer
Martin GebhardtLighting Designer
Tieni BurkhalterVideo Artist
Deniz UzunMezzo-soprano
Adrian OetikerPiano
Philharmonia Zürich
Ballett Zürich Junior Company

The beautiful Anna Karenina is married to a strict and highly respected government official in St. Petersburg, but her marriage to him is a joyless one. When she meets the easy-going officer Count Wronski, it’s love at first sight – but she is initially reluctant to have an affair. Wronski courts her until she becomes his secret lover. This amour fou does not remain undiscovered for long, and the adulteress is socially ostracized. Anna despairs, caught between love and the moral obligation to marry. Nothing can stop the impending catastrophe.

With Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy wrote a novel that achieved international reach. Not only does it tell the story of a love affair that fails because of prevailing moral concepts, but it also sketches a multi-layered panorama of Russian society at the end of the 19th century. In Tolstoy’s opulent morality tale, Lewin, the honorable landowner, and his wife Kitty, the daughter of St. Petersburg nobility, are presented in contrast to Anna and Wronski. Their relationship is dominated not by passion, but by responsibility, sincerity, and tenderness, and they find fulfillment in living a happy life in the country.

Christian Spuck’s ballet adaption of this demanding novel has found itself a steadfast place in the great ballet companies the world over. Oslo, Moscow, Munich, and Seoul keep the ballet in their repertoire, and the Ballet Zürich was celebrated with guest performances of the production in Tel Aviv and Hong Kong. The titular hero’s fate lies at the center of the story Spuck tells, but the artistic director of the Ballet Zürich also turns his attention to the other main characters’ lives. Set to symphonic music by Sergei Rachmaninoff and Witold Lutosławski, he translates the fate of Tolstoy’s heroes into haunting choreographic images.

© Gregory Batardon
© Gregory Batardon
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