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19–21 Apr 2024
Age restrictions

On 19–21 April, GES-2 House of Culture will host the world premiere of the ballet Graphite, jointly staged by GES-2 and the Ural Opera Ballet.

Seats for the ballet are by prior registration. Members of the audience choose themselves where to sit. The ballet will also be visible from other parts of the GES-2 building, which can be accessed via the usual system of building entry tickets by prior registration.

The café and shop on the Prospekt will remain open during the performance.


Graphite is a new ballet created by choreographer Anton Pimonov and composer Vladimir Gorlinsky especially for the GES-2 Prospekt. The Prospekt, which takes up most of the ground floor of the GES‑2 building, is an open space where musicians, dancers, and spectators converge in intimate proximity. Here, classical ballet is thrust into an unexpected spatial context. The technical and rhythmic complexity of the music calls for new patterns of interaction between the performers; the traditional elements of ballet are transformed and acquire new meaning. The dancers, surrounded on all sides by the audience, remain on show throughout the performance, both when they are in movement and when they are at rest, waiting and observing. Dynamism and stasis are two equal, mutually reinforcing strands of the choreography.

The title of the ballet contains several references that are important to its creators. The term “graphite” resonates with the Russian phrase “grafika tantsa” (“the graphics of dance”) reminding us that the language of choreography often defies translation into words. Graphite is a soft material used to make pencil lead, but it is also related to diamond, the hardest of minerals.

Graphite is a system, made up of many subtle and delicate interconnections, which gathers the energy of concentration and shared experience into a single point in space.

Creative team

Anton Pimonov is a choreographer. He trained at the Vaganova Academy of Russian Ballet where he studied under Yury Umrikhin. He was a dancer at the Mariinsky Theatre in 1999–2013, where he took solo roles in Russian and international premieres. He made his debut as a choreographer at the Mariinsky Theatre in 2012 and proceeded to win the national Golden Mask Theatre Award in 2017 for his production of the ballet Violin Concerto No. 2. Anton Pimonov has choreographed productions at the Bolshoi Theatre, the Leonid Yacobson Ballet Theatre, Ballet Moscow, and the Bavarian Ballet and led the ballet company at the Perm Theatre of Opera and Ballet in 2020–2023. Since 2017, he has worked at the Ural Opera Ballet in Yekaterinburg, serving as deputy director and choreographer for three seasons and staging Brahms Party, The Humpbacked Horse (with Slava Samodurov), and Hungarian Dances.

Vladimir Gorlinsky is a composer and improviser. Since training at the Moscow Conservatory, he has been a prizewinner at the Schnittke Interregional Open Competition for Composers (Moscow, 2002), the Jurgenson International Competition for Young Composers (Moscow, 2007), the Pythian Games (St. Petersburg, 2008), Rostrum (Dublin, 2008), the YouTube online composers’ competition (2010), the Impuls Academy Competition (Graz, 2011), and Open Space (Moscow, 2015). Vladimir Gorlinsky works as performer and composer at the Stanislavsky Electrotheatre and the Malaya Bronnaya Theatre in Moscow. His recent works include the play Post (commissioned and produced by V–A–C Foundation), Beyond Light. Journey through the Ensemble written for the 30th birthday of Moscow’s Studio of New Music, as well as a musical prologue and epilogue to a staging of Francis Poulenc’s one-act opera La voix humaine at the Perm Opera Theatre. Graphite is Vladimir Gorlinsky’s first collaboration with Ural Opera Ballet.

Elena Trubetskova is a costume designer. She studied dance at the Perm School of Choreography and the Diaghilev Arts Lyceum in Yekaterinburg. She joined the dance company of the Urals Opera Ballet in 1998 and stayed on after 2017 as designer and maker of costumes. She has worked on ballets by August Bournonville, Anton Pimonov, Igor Bulytsyn, Slava Samodurov,and Maxim Petrov as well as productions by Anna Shchekleina and Alexander Frolov at the Ural Opera Ballet, the Perm Theatre of Opera and Ballet, the Provincial Dance Theatre, the Leonid Jacobson Ballet Theatre, and the Mariinsky Theatre.

Konstantin Binkin is a lighting designer. He completed his studies in 2014 at the Russian State Institute of Stage Arts in St. Petersburg where he specialised in stage design and particularly in lighting (a course led by Vladimir Lukasevich). He has designed lighting for ballet performances at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg. In Moscow, he worked at the Bolshoi Theatre, the Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko Musical Theatre, and Ballet Moscow. Outside Russia, he has contributed to ballet and opera productions in the UK, Italy, Germany and the USA, as well as the Origen Festival of Culture in Switzerland. He has created lighting for symphonic concerts at GES-2 House of Culture, dramatic performances at the Bolshoi Drama Theatre and Lensovet Theatre in St. Petersburg, and at the Old House Theatre in Novosibirsk. His collaborations with the Ural Opera Ballet include The King’s Order by Slava Samodurov, Overture by Igor Bulytsyn, Brahms Party by Anton Pimonov, and Tales of Pierrot by Maxim Petrov, Konstantin Khlebnikov and Alexander Merkushev.

Ural Opera Ballet in Yekaterinburg is one of Russia’s foremost venues for music and dance performance. The Theatre opened in 1912 and has had its own resident ballet company since the late 1920s. The repertoire is designed to bring the public fresh versions of 19th century classics and landmark works of the 20th century. New works are also commissioned and new Russian composers, choreographers and directors are regularly invited to stage opera and ballet productions. Composers who have worked at the Ural Theatre include Artem Vasiliev, Anatoly Korolev, Yury Krasavin and Alexei Sysoev. The Theatre’s choreographers have included Slava Samodurov, Anton Pimonov, Konstantin Keichel, Andrey Kaidanovsky, Maxim Sevagin and Maxim Petrov who became director of the ballet company at the Ural Theatre in 2023. The Theatre company tours annually in Russia and abroad and has won numerous short-listings and prizes at Russia’s Golden Mask and Onegin performing arts awards.

After its premiere at GES-2 House of Culture, the production will be adapted for the stage of the Ural Opera Ballet in Yekaterinburg where the first performances will take place on 8–9 June.

Ural Ballet artists
Anna Domke, Elena Glushakova, Anastasia Kerzhemankina, Mikhail Khushutin, Igor Korol, Anna Melikyan, Varvara Pugacheva, Gleb Sageyev, Tomoha Terada, Mikhail Volkov

Maksim Petrov artistic director

Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble | MCME
Konstantin Efimov flute
Oleg Tantsov clarinet
Ignat Krasikov saxophone
Dmitry Sharov trombone
Mikhail Dubov piano
Maria Sadurdinova synthesiser
Evsevy Zubkov, Philipp Fitin percussion
Evgeny Subbotin violin
Olga Demina cello
Leonid Bakulin double bass

Elizaveta Korneyeva сonductor

Roman Zhaurov designer and maker of custom instruments
Victoria Korshunova director of MCME

Ekaterina Arkhipova, Kira Berman, Ksenia Makshantseva, Mikhail Yatskov

Technical production
Artem Kanifatov, Konstantin Petruk, Mikhail Sarkisyants

Marat Bariev, Sergei Kochetkov


Curator of the GES-2 dance programme:
Anastasia Proshutinskaya

Curator of the GES-2 music programme:
Dmitry Renansky

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