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Passport Picks

Editor’s Choice

Prix Benois de la Danse

he international dance festival Prix Benois de la Danse is back in Moscow this spring. The festival began at the Bolshoi Theater in the early 1990s and was hosted in subsequent years by different European capitals, with its fifth anniversary celebrated at the UNESCO palace in Paris. This year’s festival highlights the achievements of modern dance in Russia, inviting representatives of various dance schools that have contributed to the development of Russian choreography. It is also a means to raise funds to support retired dancers who have been influential in the area of modern dance. The program this year includes a concert by the nominees and, of course, a celebration of the award winners. On the second day, a charity gala concert of last year’s

Bolshoi Theater, May 6 & 7, 19:00

Benois laureates will take place. Stars from American Ballet Theater, Teatro Argentino, the Monte Carlo Ballet, the State Berlin Ballet, the Royal Ballet, New National Theater (Tokyo), the Mariinsky Theater, the Paris National Opera, and the Munich Ballet will be performing at the Bolshoi Theater.

Alexander Gindin: Triumph of the Grand Piano

lexander Gindin is one of the most talented pianists of his generation. At 17, he won the prestigious Tchaikovsky Competition and two years later was a soloist with the Moscow Philharmonic. The 30-year-old graduate of the Moscow Conservatory is a member of the faculty there and performs all over the world. For his Moscow concert, Gindin will present a musical program the highlight of which will be the Grieg piano concerto, written when the Norwegian composer was only 26. The Grieg concerto will be framed by two compositions, one by Grieg and another by Alfred Schnittke, based on Peer Gynt by Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen.

May 29, International House of Music, 19:00

Summertime, and the listenin’ is easy

eorge Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess was last performed in Moscow in 1951. This month the strains of the 1935 opera will once again be heard in Russia as Living Arts, Inc. presents performances in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Members of the New York City Opera will perform this genuinely American chef d’oeuvre, whose story weaves together passion and pride, sincerity and pathos, all of which is reflected in the harmony of jazz and blues music.

June 6 & 7
Svetlanovsky Hall
International House of Music

Roisin Murphy

ritish vocalist Roisin Murphy is the voice and soul of the band Moloko. Formed when Roisin met dance music producer Mark Brydon, the group released four albums between 1994 and 2006: Statues, I Am Not a Doctor, Things to Make and Do, and Do You Like My Tight Sweater? In addition, Roisin has collaborated with such musicians as Handsome Boy Modeling School and The Psychedelic Waltons. It was thanks to another collaborator, Boris Dlugosh, that the band’s single “Sing It Back” became a worldwide hit in 2000. The same year, the band went on tour with their third album, Statues, which did not feature the unusual rhythms that characterized their previous work, containing instead more instrumental compositions. “The Time Is Now,” a single from that album, was another a huge success on the world charts.

B1 Maximum, May 23, 21:00

After the Statues tour, the band members, which included percussionist Paul Slowly, pianist Eddie Stevens, and guitarist Dave Cooke, parted and embarked upon solo careers. After releasing her first solo album in the autumn of 2007, Roisin is now on tour.

Anton Langue: Miles of Russian Photographs

nton Langue is a famous Russian photographer whose usual sphere of activity is commercial advertising photography. In May, however, we will have a chance to see his other face. Together with the Russian Railways Company, Langue will present a large project dedicated to a large country. “Russia Viewed from a Train Window” is a collection of about 200 of Langue’s photos from his trips to the Caucasus, Urals, and Russian Far East. The modern artist highlights the issue of environmental protection, underscoring our responsibility to preserve the beauty of the natural world so that it can be enjoyed by future generations of artists and nonartists alike. The exhibit is also something of an homage to another Russian photographer, Sergei Prokudin-Gorsky, whose “Collection of Russian Sights”

Novy Manezh, May 1 – 17, 10:00 – 19:00

contains color photographs taken between 1905 and 1916. The exhibition, supported by the Library of Congress in the United States, will go on to New York.

Sweet Cherry Wood Festival

weet cherry trees don’t grow in Moscow, but every spring, thanks to the Bosco di Ciliegi [Sweet Cherry Wood] Company, they bloom here. The Sweet Cherry Wood Festival is not simply a program of concerts and exhibitions but an attempt to revive the robust artistic salons that existed in 19th - and early 20th-century Moscow, St. Petersburg, and other European cities. The festival is in Moscow for the eighth time this May, uniting the performing and visual arts at such prestigious venues as the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the Chekhov Moscow Art Theater (MKhAT im. Chekhova), and the Moscow Conservatory. This year’s theme, “Awakening of Feelings,” promises an exciting program with the participationsof both veteran and young artists. The program includes a screening of Franco Zeffirelli’s Autobiography at the Pushkin Museum as well as an exhibition of Parmigianino’s ”Antea.” Fashion historian Alexander Vassiliev will present the photo exhibit “Fashion and Cinema of the 1930s – 1940s,” and Russian actor and MKhAT

For venues and schedule see

artistic director Oleg Tabakov will present the premiere of a musical based on the children’s story Konek Gorbunok [The Little Hump-Backed Horse].

Art Moscow

nterest in — and the prices of — modern art is on the rise in Russia. The 12th annual Art Moscow art fair will take place at the Central House of Artists in May. This international art forum brings together curators, galleries, critics, artists, collectors, and experts from leading Russian and European galleries. The central event will be a three-day conference, the Contemporary Art Fair Course. Initiated by the Sotheby’s Institute of Arts and oriented toward contemporary modern art and its market, the event will include presentations by specialists on the criteria used to evaluate pieces of art, the logic of collecting, Russian and European artists, and working with dealers and galleries. In addition, private collections will be on display. This year Valery Shandalov of Optima group and Jeanne Bulloc of RIGroup will present their treasures. In addition to the program at the Central House of Artists, there will be events at

Central House of Artists, May 14 – 18
12:00 – 20:00,

other venues, such as the opening of an exhibit of work by Julia Winter at the Moscow Museum of Modern Art and of George Condo’s “Condomaximum” at Gary Tatintsyan’s gallery. Plus master classes, Gallery Night at Winzavod, and lots more — and you’re invited!


Kuskovo Palace

Tsaritisyno (literally, Tsarina’s) was purchased by Catherine the Great from Irina Godunova in 1775. The architect Vasily Bazhenov was commissioned to construct a summer palace for the Tsarina. He designed a park in the English style, creating pleasure buildings, grottoes, lakes and bridges, and even artificial ruins in a mixture of Gothic and Old Russian styles. Red bricks and white stones were meant to recapture the look of traditional Russian wooden architecture. Catherine liked everything but the palaces, which she ordered torn down. Matvei Kazakov continued the work, with only slight amendments to Bazhenov’s patterns. The mansion was not finished during Catherine’s reign, remaining half-built for centuries until a recent renovation. The park is a popular destination for Muscovites.

Kuskovo was a patrimonial estate of the Sheremetyev boyars since the 16th century. Boris Sheremetyev (1652-1719) received Kuskovo from Peter the Great as an honor for the victory over Sweden at Poltava. His son Peter commissioned the best architects available to construct the mansion. The park is described as the “Versailles of Moscow,” and the main edifices were begun in 1760. Andrei Vogt and Yuri Kologrilov, who had spent much time in Italy, supervised the construction. The architects Karl Blank and Fyodor Argunov (a former serf) were responsible for the Classical style of the mansion itself, the grotto in the park, the orangerie, and the open-air theater, which became a favorite gathering place for the Moscow nobility in the 18th century.

M. Tsaritsyno, Orekhovo
Tuesday-Sunday, 10:00 - 18:00
Closed Monday
M. Ryazansky Prospekt
Wednesday-Sunday, 10:00 - 18:00
Closed Monday & Tuesday



Ostankino is another mansion connected with the name Sheremetyev. It was constructed for the two passions of Count Nikolai Sheremetyev: his wife Praskovia Zhemchugova-Kovalyova and his theater. Intended to be a summer residence and theater, it was designed by Quarenghi in 1794, though it was Fyodor Argunov who completed the construction and combined the features of an urban residence and a country villa. The lack of heating in the wooden palace has helped to preserve the structure over time. Another feature of the estate is the Trinity Church, whose Moscow baroque exterior contrasts with the Classical style of the elegant palace. Ceramic tile inlays and white stone carvings contribute to the festive appearance of the church, which was built in 1683.

The Arkhangelskoye estate is located on the picturesque bank of the Moscow River and is named for the Church of the Archangel Michael, which was constructed in Nikita Odoyevsky’s mansion in 1667. In 1810, the estate was purchased by Prince Nikolai Yusupov as a setting for his well-known collection of fine furniture and art. While serving as an ambassador abroad, he opened his collection to the public. French architect Chevalier de la Huerne designed the mansion, which consists of a maIn building with a belvedere and a portico with four columns. The view from the garden includes terraces with statues, a French park, and the river.

M. VDNKh, bus #549
Tuesday-Sunday,10:00 - 18:00
Closed Monday
M.Tushinskaya, bus #549
Wednesday-Sunday, 10:30 - 17:00
Closed Monday & Tuesday

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