Since the publication of the novel "Les Liaisons Dangereuses" in 1782, it has been accompanied by an aura of scandal. Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, using the image of the aristocracy of eighteenth-century France as the background of the events, exposed the baseness of the human soul, talking about revenge, lust and manipulation. It is a story in which men are cynical and impertinent, women are cruel and calculating each move, and there is no room for love, tenderness nor innocence.
The history of film adaptations of this title is truly an interesting phenomena. The most popular one was Stephen Frears' film from 1988, with Glenn Close, John Malkovich and Michelle Pfeiffer.
Leading Polish choreographer Krzysztof Pastor and Latvian composer Arturs Maskats met in Riga, Latvia. The idea for the ballet "Dangerous Liaisons", inspired by the novel and film, was born from conversations and meetings. The composer did not hide the fact that the topic was extremely fascinating.
- I'm glad that I managed to introduce vocals to ballet music. I composed an aria for a countertenor and a short interlude for the vocal ensemble. I am not trying to imitate the music from the era in which Choderlos de Laclos wrote the novel, - said Arturs Maskats. - But I must admit that baroque and classical forms, especially dances, were an inspiration for me. The world premiere took place in Riga, then the choreography was performed by the National Theater in Ostrava and the Grand Theater in Poznań.
Now it's time for Opera Nova in Bydgoszcz: the Ballet company and the Orchestra are working intensively.
Premiere: November 11, 2023
Fot. Robert Wolański
Director of the Polish National Ballet and in 2011-2020 artistic director of the ballet of the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theater. He was born and trained as a dancer in Gdańsk. He was a soloist of the Conrad Drzewiecki Polish Dance Theater, the Grand Theater in Łódź and the Lyon Ballet. In 1985, he joined the Dutch National Ballet (Het Nationale Ballet) and began working as a choreographer there. After ending his stage career, in 1997-1999 he was a choreographer with the Washington Ballet, and then continued his work in Amsterdam, where in 2003-2017 he was resident choreographer of the Dutch National Ballet. Most of his original ballets were created there. He has performed over 70 different choreographies, also with companies from Australia (The Australian Ballet, West Australian Ballet), Belgium, the Czech Republic, Hong Kong, Israel, Canada, Lithuania, Latvia, Germany, New Zealand, Poland, Sweden (Royal Swedish Ballet), Turkey, Hungary, Great Britain (Scottish Ballet), Italy and the USA (Washington Ballet and Joffrey Ballet).
In 2009, he accepted the invitation of director Waldemar Dąbrowski to take over the direction of the ballet of the Grand Theater - National Opera, which soon gained artistic autonomy and was raised to the rank of the Polish National Ballet. Under his direction, the ensemble began a new period of dynamic development, strengthening its artistic composition and enriching its repertoire with world-class choreographic masterpieces and new works by Polish creators. He staged several of his earlier ballets on the Warsaw stage: Tristan, Kurt Weill, In Light and Shadow, Moving Rooms, Romeo and Juliet, The Tempest, Bolero and Do Not Go Gentle... as well as new choreographies: And the rains will pass..., Adagio&Scherzo, Casanova in Warsaw, his own version of Swan Lake and Concerto in F minor to Chopin's music.
Winner of choreographic awards of the International Ballet Competition in Helsinki and the Dutch Dansersfonds'79 Foundation, special awards of the Polish Minister of Culture and National Heritage, the Association of Polish Stage Artists and ZAiKS. He was awarded the Gold Medal for Merit to Culture - Gloria Artis (2011), the Officer's Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (2015) and the Honorary Gold Star of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania (2016) and the Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit to Lithuania (2021). In 2017, he received the title of "Outstanding Pole" from the Polish Promotional Emblem Foundation "Teraz Polska". In 2019, his ballet Dracula, produced by the West Australian Ballet, received the Performing Arts Western Australian Dance Award for Best New Dance Work.
Fot. Veli-Pekka Väisänen
stage and costume designer
First graduated as an architect in Warsaw she entered the University of Art and Design in Helsinki and obtained a Master’s degree in stage design in 1984. Her master thesis consisted of the set and costume design for The Little Prince Ballet for the Finnish National Opera 1982, which she was appointed at the same year. She has designed the sets and costumes for over 160 operas, ballets and theatre productions.
Cooperation outside Finland
Japan, United States, France, Poland, Germany, Estonia, Russia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Sweden, Latvia.
Besides exhibiting around the Finland, her work has been seen in Prague, Warsaw, Tokyo, Toronto, Bilbao, Tallinn and Tarto.
Prizes and nominations
Silver medal at the international Prague Quadriennale in 1995 of her stage and costume design for the opera The Nightingale, The Finnish Wihuri Prize in 2002 of her costume designs for the opera Khovanshchina,The Best Opera in the world 2017 YAMawards for the opera Miracle boy A with her scenography and costumes and The Onegin Award (the most important musical theatre award in Russia, 2017) for set design and costumes for César Cui’s opera The Prisoner of the Caucasus,
The Crystal Mask Prize at the Teatralnaya Vesna Festival (Russia, 2018) for Best Set Design and Costumes for The Prisoner of the Caucasus.
Cerificate of appreciation awarded by minister of foreign affairs of the Republic of Poland Krzysztof Skubiszewski for her promotion of Polish culture abroad 1991, Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland for her promotion of Polish culture in Finland 1999, Knight of the Lion of the Republic of Finland awarded by President of the Republic of Finland 2014, The Officer’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland 2017.
In addition, Anna Kontek gives lectures at universities in Finland, Spain, Portugal and Poland.
Fot. Simona Skrebutėnaitė
dyrygent symfoniczny i operowy
A graduate of the F. Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw at the Faculty of Composition, Conducting and Theory of Music, majoring in symphonic and opera conducting in the class of prof. Antoni Wit (2003). She won the second prize at the International Competition for Opera Conductors in Orvieto, Italy.
In the years 2002-2013, she was associated with the Grand Theater in Poznań as a conductor. She made her debut on this stage with the premiere production of the opera Faust by Prince Antoni Radziwiłł, together with Adam Hanuszkiewicz (director) and Franciszek Starowieyski (set design).
At the Grand Theater in Poznań, she prepared many opera productions, including the Polish premiere of the opera The Gamblers by Dymitr Shostakovich / Krzysztof Meyer, in cooperation with the composer Krzysztof Meyer and Andrea Chenier by Umberto Giordano together with Mariusz Treliński (director). As a music director, she prepared the premieres of Weber's The Freeshooter, Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel and the ballet premieres of Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream, Karłowicz's Stanisław and Anna Oświęcim, Løvenskjold's La Sylphide, Maskats' Dangerous Liaisons with Krzysztof Pastor (choreography).
For many years, she conducted as music director performances of the operas Nabucco and Otello by Verdi, Cosi fan tutte by Mozart, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk by Shostakovich and Tchaikovsky's ballet Swan Lake. In 2007, together with Wiesław Ochman, she prepared a series of concerts entitled Polish tenors in memory of Jan Kiepura, presented at the Warsaw National Philharmonic. As part of her cooperation with the Opera in Kraków, she conducted, among others, performances of Mozart's Don Giovanni with Mariusz Kwiecień in the title role (2009). In 2010, she conducted Puccini's La Bohème - a mega-spectacle at Stara Gazownia in Poznań, directed by Agata Duda-Gracz. Together with the director Paweł Szkotak, she staged two productions on the stage of the Polish Theater in Poznań: Shaffer's Amadeusz was awarded by the monthly "Teatr" in the "best music" category, and Brecht-Weill's The Threepenny Opera, for which she vocally prepared the actors and the musical group, which she led by playing keyboard instruments.
In cooperation with Hanna Śleszyńska and Bartosz Bandura, she implemented her own project titled Sing Brecht, commissioned by the Leszno Barok Plus festival. In 2014, she began the cooperation with the Musical Theater in Poznań. As a music director, she prepared and conducted operetta performances - The Merry Widow by F. Lehar, Die Fledermaus by J. Strauss - as well as musical productions: Hello Dolly by Herman, Fiddler on the Roof by Bock, Nun in Disguise by Menken, Evita by Webber, performances There's Nothing Like the 1920s and 1930s (CD CD with Grażyna Brodzińska) and concerts based on the musical repertoire: From Broadway to Hollywood, anniversary concerts, New Year's Eve concerts, etc.
In April 2018, at the invitation of the Łódź Philharmonic, she conducted the Grand Opera Gala with the Metropolitan Opera soloist Mariusz Kwiecień and the Łódź Philharmonic Orchestra. She collaborated several times with Klassik Radio in Hamburg, conducting numerous concert tours through the most famous halls of Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Sweden and others, conducting concerts, consisting of hits from film music, operettas and musical classics, later recorded on CDs entitled "Proms" and "Die besten Klassik Hits". She collaborated with Jacek Delong's big band at the Academy of Music in Łódź. As a conductor, she has conducted over 700 performances (opera, operetta, musical) and symphonic concerts (including the orchestra of the National Philharmonic, the Łódź Philharmonic, the Częstochowa Philharmonic).
During her career so far, she has cooperated with directors Mariusz Treliński, Maciej Prus, Adam Hanuszkiewicz, Michał Znaniecki, Paweł Szkotak, Sebastian Gonciarz, Maria Sartova, Artur Hoffman; soloists: Grażyna Brodzińska, Damian Aleksander, Edyta Krzemień, Janusz Radek, Małgorzata Walewska, Mariusz Kwiecień, Artur Ruciński, Joanna Woś and many others.
Since 2009, he has been teaching at the I. J. Paderewski Academy of Musici in Poznań. She was awarded the Bronze Medal for Long Service and the honorary badge of Merit for Polish Culture by the President of the Republic of Poland.
Suffering and love told through contemporary dance
20th of February:We will begin to sell tickets to our May performances!
Since the publication of the novel "Les Liaisons Dangereuses" in 1782, it has been accompanied by an aura of scandal. Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, using the image of the aristocracy of eighteenth-century France as the background of the events, exposed the baseness of the human soul, talking about revenge, lust and manipulation. It is a story in which men are cynical and impertinent, women are cruel and calculating each move, and there is no room for love, tenderness nor innocence. The histor...
Works, associated with the construction of Opera Nova, will benefit our audience in the future. However, before it happens, we all have to face certain constraints.We politely remind our visitors about the difficulties linked to the liquidation of the of the car park in Karmelicka Street and traffic restrictions in this area, which also includes Brda Boulevard. If travelling by car is essential, we suggest designated parking spaces:Grudziądzka Street (15 minutes walk from the Opera House),...