Notre Chopin

Fryderyk Chopin / Liam Scarlett, Krzysztof Pastor

  • Part 1

    45 min.

  • Intermission

    30 min.

  • Part 2

    35 min.

Duration: 1 h 50 min.

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Ballet evening in two parts

Celebrating 100 Years of Poland’s Regained Independence

Concerto in E minor
A ballet in one act by Liam Scarlett
Music: Fryderyk Chopin

Concerto in F minor
A ballet in one act by Krzysztof Pastor
Music: Fryderyk Chopin

World premiere: 17 November 2018, Polish National Ballet

‘The world is so beautiful that I can’t describe it to you… I have to say it with dance,’ says the titular Devil in Andrzej Żuławski’s 1972 film. Somehow, we have to come to terms with the fact that Chopin did not write a single stage piece – worse, his orchestral pieces can be counted on the fingers of one hand. He was an unmatched master of one instrument: it seems that he did not want to waste his short life to chase many rabbits. He has found his happy place by the piano and that is where he stayed. A symphonic Chopin is a construct we may attempt to infer from the two concertos he wrote in his youth. Notre Chopin came to life because two excellent choreographers thought the concertos’ ethereal beauty can be translated into the language of ballet. Written by a young man in love, the two pieces are a crowning achievement of the brilliant style. (They are also a tad tired, especially if you follow the finals of the Chopin Piano Competition with the avidity of a sports fan.) They are not the work of a terminally ill genius evoking ‘coughing willows’. Instead they tell a story of love, at times  joyous, at times melancholic, but full of life. For us, Poles, the ‘ourness’ of Chopin’s music is deeply rooted in the national subconsciousness, its romantic idiom giving us ‘patriotic goose bumps’. And while Krzysztof Pastor was in a position to treat Chopin as ‘his’, Liam Scarlett, who is resident choreographer with the Royal Ballet, London, approached Chopin’s music as an outsider hailing from a culture which sees the genius of the great romantic composer is in more universal terms.

Credits

Polish National Ballet
Orchestra of the Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera

Sponsors

  • Patron of Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera

  • Partners of Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera

  • Logo Perlage
  • Logo Sisley
  • Logo Albert Riele
  • Partner of the Polish National Ballet

  • Carried out as part of the NIEPODLEGŁA programme for 2017–2021

  • Partners of the reception

  • Logo Opasły tom
  • Media patrons