Spectacular Russian Opera and Ballet Theater

Novosibirsk State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre is the largest and one of the most technically advanced theaters in Russia.

Its main floor features ticket offices and vestibule; on the second floor and the third floor there is a concert hall with adjoining ‘wings’ featuring rehearsal halls, administrative rooms, wardrobes and theater set departments.

The vestibule.

It was completed in February 1944, the first performance being held on May 12th, 1945. During these years, over 340 opera and ballet performances have been held here. Today, over 800 people work in the theater and about half of them are performers.

Construction works lasted for about 10 years, from 1931 till 1941. Some say that is was built by Germans but it’s not true. During WWII, a lot of exhibits from museums located in the European part of the USSR were kept here, including the Hermitage, Tretyakov Gallery and Bolshoi Theater.

The total area of the building is 11,837 m², the volume is 294,340 m³. The theatre is often called “Siberian Coliseum” for its size and beauty.

They spent over 33 million dollars on its renovation which ended in 2005. After that, its computerized stage equipment became the most technically advanced in Russia.

The concert hall.

The grand hall.

After the reconstruction, they increased the number of seats in the grand hall to 1,774.

The filled the space between the columns of the upper gallery with 16 sculptures.

The ceiling of the grand hall is a kind of the acoustic screen made of pressed carton.

The chandelier is 6 meters in diameter and has a weight of over 2 tons.

This is a theater set for La Bayadère.

The view from the roof of the theater.

Compare it with this photo which was taken a year ago.

The principal construction of Novosibisk theatre’s building is the big dome, 60 metres wide and 35 metres high. The dome is a unique construction that supports itself without girders or columns. The ratio of its thickness (an average of 8 cm) to its radius is less than that of a chicken egg.

This photograph was taken from the top of a neighboring building.

Now, let’s check what happens backstage.

This is a large rehearsal hall for ballet dancers (there is also a small rehearsal hall in the theater).

Assembling the theater set for La Bayadère.

This stage is one of the largest in Eurasia.

We’ve got this high (27 meters above the ground) to see how this setting is fixed.

These electric motors are used to pull the setting up and down.

With this clock they synchronize the process of raising and lowering the theater setting.

Lift devices.

They control the setting from one of the balconies above the stage.

The orchestra pit.

Right now, they are carrying out a sound check.

Karen Movsesyan is an opera singer and head of the theater’s PR department.

Behind the stage, they keep hard setting elements.

Here, they make costumes.

Each costume is made individually for each actor or ballet dancer.

Here they repair musical instruments.

Before another play. They always play to a full house!

Location: Novosibirsk

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