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25 June 2019 (Tue), 20:00 Alexandrinsky Imperial Ballet Theatre (established 1756) - Modern Ballet Modern Dance Ballet of Boris Eifman"Up & Down" after the "Tender is the Night" by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Schedule for Modern Dance Ballet of Boris Eifman"Up & Down" after the "Tender is the Night" by F. Scott Fitzgerald. 2021

Lighting Designer: Gleb Filshtinsky
Set Designer: Zinovy Margolin
Composer: Franz Schubert
Choreography: Boris Eifman
Composer: George Gershwin
Composer: Alban Berg

Orchestra: Symphony Orchestra "Congress"

Premiere of this production: 27 January 2015, Alexandrinsky Imperial Ballet Theatre. St.Petersburg

Boris Eifman is justly called a “choreographer-philosopher”. However, a much more subtle definition that accurately captures the aesthetic individuality of the Maestro would be a “choreographer-psychoanalyst”. Rightly believing that ballet tools open truly unlimited research opportunities before a dance creator, Eifman plunges into the unknown depths of his characters’ inner worlds and penetrates into the most hidden places of the subconscious.

The quintessence of the choreographer’s psychoanalytic research has become the ballet Up & Down. The semantic space of the performance encompassed between two oppositely directed vectors of the plot (the degradation of the talented young doctor and the ascension of his wife and patient), is turned into a field for surrealistic experiments. With the help of the original plastic vocabulary Eifman depicts the disintegration of characters’ consciousness, bringing their nightmares and delusions to the surface. The choreographer emphasizes rather ironically: the ballet Up & Down is not just a full point but a blot in his many years of psychiatric ballet epic.

The characters’ ups and downs take place in the magnificent Jazz Age – the unstoppable feast of life; the era of freedom, sensuality, and hedonism, masterfully recreated by Boris Eifman and his dancers.


Act 1

A psychiatric clinic. A bizarre kaleidoscope of obsessions, fears, and fragments of patients’ minds. A young Psychiatrist is in the center of this phantasmagoric world. Striving to help the miserable, he plunges into the innermost secrets of their fractured souls.

Young female Patient, a new inmate of the clinic, brought there by her millionaire father. The perceptive Psychiatrist manages to earn the confidence of the patient. The established spiritual connection develops into affection. But what is the root cause of the nightmares that torture the girl?

Psychiatrist finds Patients's Father. Under doctor’s pressure he confesses to the sin of incest.

Psychiatrist’s care helps Patient break free from the burden of the past. Psychiatrist suffers the pangs of conscience: doctor’s commandments deny any possibility of intimacy with patients.

Patients's Father – the ominous personification of the power of money – would not mind buying a personal doctor for his daughter. Such fate is unacceptable for Psychiatrist. He has to part with his patient.

Bouts of madness remind of the fragility of the Patient’s regained sanity. Her mind, split by the mental illness, generates a sinister twin that haunts the girl. And yet now, she has never been closer to recovery. Psychiatrist’s love is a salvation for her. Inhabitants of the clinic celebrate Psychiatrist and Patient’s wedding.


Act 2

The just married couple’s family life goes within the clinic walls. The insidious disease, ready to return at any moment, saddens their marital happiness. Patient does not want to share Psychiatrist with other inmates, so she makes him leave the clinic.

The couple’s everyday existence is turned into a carnival. However, the never ending feast does not save Psychiatrist from the aching longing for his old life filled with the doctor’s noble work. The flow of luxury that hit Psychiatrist after his marriage to the possessor of millions consumes him rapidly. The corruption of the soul cannot be stopped.

Psychiatrist meets Movie Star. The romance between them does not bring him the harmony he wishes for.

Patient’s illness finally recedes, revealing the cold and power-hungry nature of her blood. Psychiatrist’s marriage falls into pieces. Patient gets closer with Buddy, who has been long in love with her.

Psychiatrist is broken and crushed. Desperate drunken escapades are the ultimate gesture of helplessness. His medical talent is ruined, his will to live has drained, and the mind is clouded with the haze of impending madness. Psychiatrist returns to the clinic that he has left once. From now on he is its new patient.


Schedule for Modern Dance Ballet of Boris Eifman"Up & Down" after the "Tender is the Night" by F. Scott Fitzgerald. 2021

Boris Eifman's Up & Down - Official Trailer
About This Video
Ballet by Boris Eifman

Music: G. Gershwin, F. Schubert, A. Berg

Sets: Zinovy Margolin

Costumes: Olga Shaishmelashvili

Light: Gleb Filshtinsky, Boris Eifman

Premiere: January 27 and 28, 2015. Alexandrinsky Theatre (St. Petersburg).

European premiere will be held at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris on February 9, 10, 11.

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