Famous Sculptures Brought to Life by Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg

Based on last night's Opening Show, this is a visual spectacle of sculptures that chasséd into stories of French sculptor Auguste Rodin's passionate and often tumultuous affairs told in "Pyschological Ballet". The Eifman Ballet of St Petersburg convincingly made Rodin's famous sculptures such as The Eternal Idol, The Gates of Hell, and The Cathedral come to life!

Image by Nikolay Krusser

Image by Nikolay Krusser

CHICAGO — The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University welcomes the Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg to the stage for the Chicago Premiere of “Rodin” May 17 - 19. Dedicated to the life and creative work of the great French sculptor Auguste Rodin and his apprentice, lover and muse Camille Claudel, “Rodin” tells the epic saga of two artistic geniuses and the price they pay to foster their work. Choreographed and developed by Boris Eifman, “Rodin” brings the visionary choreographer’s “psychological ballet” style to the Auditorium Stage with his company that “The Financial Times” hails as “the dance equivalent of a guilty pleasure.” Tickets ($30 – $90) are on sale now and available online at AuditoriumTheatre.org, by calling (800) 982-ARTS (2787) or at the Auditorium Theatre Box Office (50 E Congress Pkwy).

“It is a privilege to present the Chicago premiere of Boris Eifman’s inventive exploration of true artistic genius in “Rodin” on the Auditorium’s landmark stage,” said Auditorium Theatre Executive Director Brett Batterson. “It has been a truly remarkable, diverse season at the Auditorium and what better way to end it than with the innovative, originality of the Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg.”

Defying the boundaries of classic ballet, Boris Eifman brings an entirely new approach to storytelling through dance. His “psychological ballet” allows him to combine dramatic stagecraft, exquisite technique and powerful dramatic interpretation that can be seen in his newest ballet, “Rodin.” Based on the life of French sculptor Auguste Rodin (1840–1917) and his turbulent relationship with his mistress and muse, Camille Claudel, this epic tale, set to music by Saint-Saëns, Massenet and Ravel, tells the story of instinctive human passions and the terrible price of artistic genius. This inventive ballet delves into the creative process of artistic minds and the never-ending balance between following ones ambition or ones heart.

Making its world-premiere performance in 2011 at the Alexandrinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, the new ballet earned Principal Dancer of the Eifman Ballet, Oleg Gabyshev, a Golden Mask Russian National Theater Award for his portrayal of Auguste Rodin. The Ballet also garnered four “Golden Soffits”, the reputable St. Petersburg theater awards, including Best Ballet Production, Best Male Dancer (Oleg Gabyshev), Best Female dancer (Nina Zmievets) and Best Set Designer in music theatre (Zinovy Margolin).

“The life and love of Rodin and Claudel is an amazing story of two artists struggling to find themselves and their work through one another,” said Choreographer Boris Eifman. “My goal for this piece was to turn a moment frozen in stone by these two masters into an irrepressible sensuous stream of body movements. Through body language, we are able to express the immense passion, internal struggle and despair that both Rodin and Claudel infused into their work.”

Choreographer Boris Eifman’s depiction love and creation comes to life as Set Designer Margolin transforms the Auditorium Stage into the home and workspace of a French artist. Olga Shaishmelashvili’s offers a striking visual spectacle through her costumes while Gleb Filshtinsky’s and Eifman’s lighting design creates stark contrast between romance and passion infused with angst and madness.

The Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg’s “Rodin” is made possible through the support of the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation and Seymour Persky.

Performance Schedule and Ticket Information

Eifman Ballet of St. Petersburg performs “Rodin” at the Auditorium Theatre:

Friday, May 17 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 18 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, May 19 at 3 p.m.

Tickets ($30 - $90) are available online at AuditoriumTheatre.org, by calling 
(800) 982-ARTS (2787) or in-person at Auditorium Theatre’s Box Office (50 E Congress Pkwy).

About the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University

The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, located at 50 E Congress Pkwy, is an independent, not-for-profit organization committed to presenting the finest in international, cultural and community programming to Chicago, and to the continued restoration and preservation of the National Historic Landmark Auditorium Theatre. The Auditorium Theatre is generously supported by the Illinois Arts Council, CityArts and the Palmer House Hilton. For more information about programming, volunteer and donor opportunities or theater tours, call (312) 341-2310 or visit AuditoriumTheatre.org.

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