Opening Asia for Russia

02.01.2021 100 просмотров

The TV channel "Big Asia" hosted a unique DANCE TELEMATHON, which was presented by the Ilze Liepa Charitable Foundation for the Promotion of the Development of Choreographic and Fine Arts with the support of the Presidential Grants Foundation and the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. 


As part of the telethon, Ilze Liepa gave an interview to our media resource. 




With People's Artist of Russia, laureate of the State Prize, founder of the Charitable Foundation for the Promotion of the Development of Choreographic and Fine Arts Ilze Liepa talk host Valery Rybkin.

- Our interview with you takes place within the framework of Telethon, dedicated to the 10th anniversary of the All-Russian Children's and Youth Dance Competition "The Rite of Spring". How did the idea to create Award within competition?

Of course it was the way to go! It all started with the creation of a ballet school. I am lucky - I have a friend and colleague Subbotovskaya, with which we go hand in hand. Our idea was to create a unique studio for personal training in the right directions, such as Pilates, because Pilates was brought to Russia by Maria first. At first we were surprised, but then we realized that fate itself makes us think that we need to open a studio, a school for children.

then less and less and less. At that moment, I realized that we do not have a methodology for working with children of such a young age. Precisely in preparing them for ballet. The famous system of Agrippina Yakovlevna Vaganova, for which Russian ballet is famous and which has spread all over the world, is designed for children from the age of 11.


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Having entered the space of ballet schools, Maria and I decided to organize a competition-festival, so that there would be an event for "our" children, to invite professional choreographic schools and see what exists in general in the children's dance space.

The first competition, it was a competition-festival, we held on our own facilities. This inspired us a lot, and also raised another question: well, we saw dancing children from Moscow vocational schools, from Moscow dance groups. But how does our country dance? How do amateurs dance in our country?

Our country is huge. Accordingly, there are a lot of dancing children, dancing youth. What is our youth dancing? That was a huge question, and we really wanted to dive deep into it. And then we went across the country. We used everything, including my personal tours. I watched where contests and festivals were held, connected to them as just an observer, and, if possible, was a member of the jury.

Even then we began to receive support from the governors around the country. We organized our own competitions in order to get acquainted with this dance space. Not only with young people, but most importantly, with their teachers and choreographers. Because we perfectly understood that young people dance what teachers teach and what choreographers offer. Therefore, it was very important for us to reach this contingent of choreographers and teachers.

Along the way, we had many wonderful discoveries, as well as a lot of questions and many depressing moments. This is also our great way to comprehend the dance space of Russia. Then it became clear to us that we cannot change this whole space, but we must give some guidance to the dance community. Flavor guide. Some kind of aspiration for the guys, so that they would like to get somewhere, to strive for something. After all, how can you convince a guy or a young man of 13-15 years old that he made the right choice by going to the dance space and that his peers who go to the boxing, swimming studio, he, the guy who dances in a folk or modern group, does not concedes that his life can be in many ways more interesting than the lives of his peers who are in sports? Sport is great, I am for sport. Absolutely. But art is a very bright space that can, literally, save our youth, give an interesting youth with the right passion in life - for example, like our guys, who are already entering the orbit of our competition.

The competition and the award are a whole symbiosis of several projects, and it is very valuable for us that on this path we received the support of the Moscow Department of Culture, then we were supported by the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Finance. A year ago, with the support of the Presidential Grants Fund, we were able to expand our project throughout Russia. The project has become multi-layered, which begins with competitions in the regions; and the laureates who win in their region come to Moscow for the final competition for the National Prize.

The winners of the National Prize who come forward become participants in our unique performance, our gala performance, which takes place on the stage of the Bolshoi Theater , and which we make a team of real theater and dance professionals. This is what the participants of our competitions and awards are striving for. We are becoming one big dance family!


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- What is the role of mentors-teachers in the formation of personality? 

- This is the main role in whose hands the child will fall. Next year the Russian National Ballet School will be 20 years old. When I entered the ballet class and saw the eyes of 4-5-year-old children, I was completely amazed by this purity, openness, naivety and this feeling that the children will now accept everything that you give them. Everything is absolutely! .. You will tell them: “This is good,” and they will trustingly repeat after you. You say something else, and they trustfully repeat it. What is the teacher's responsibility - to understand this space of admissibility and necessity of what needs to be said to children! 

Therefore, our master classes are aimed specifically at teachers. It is very important to meet exactly with teachers, evaluate their work, tell them their mistakes, positive qualities; praise them for their discoveries, scold them mercilessly for unacceptable things. Because these trusting eyes are the qualification and the measure of responsibility that every teacher faces. And of course, I want to fill these children's eyes with interest.

- Why "The Rite of Spring"? Did you take the name after Stravinsky's ballet or did you have any other ideas?

- Of course, we thought about how to name our prize. Competitions have become part of our awards. This name gives us the very collective feelings that moved us when we created the award. "Spring" is like an awakening. The awakening of nature, the birth of man. The willow branch as the first awakening has become the symbol of our award.
And “sacred” is our attitude towards the youth. This is what hands and what thoughts you need to go with and you can enter this youth space. Therefore, the name “The Sacred Spring” has become so natural for us. This is our attitude towards the younger generation and how it should be with us, adults.

- Tell us about the first steps of the award. What were the difficulties, joys, successes?

- The project is huge. It requires huge funding. The first difficulties were - to understand how we will find these funds in order to work with 10-11 teams, laureates. After all, the teams are from all over the country. Each team has a laureate who becomes part of our final performance. The choreographer should go to the region, make choreography there. At the same time, our leading creative group always monitors what the choreographer is doing. 

In parallel, the script is written during the year, the artists are selected. A week before the premiere of the performance, we host our teams with choreography already set, we host them in Moscow. In parallel, hundreds of suits are made according to the measurements sent. In the play "Prince Vladimir" there were about two hundred costumes. When the guys arrive in Moscow, the fitting of costumes begins. The performances begin. Like a puzzle, a gigantic spectacle we must put together in a week. We have only one day of rehearsal at the Bolshoi Theatre. Thanks to our very professional stage team –  lighting designer, set designer, our technical director, and all services - we can start this giant mechanism.

Usually it takes months, we manage to do it in a week. As a result, a day and a half for a rehearsal in the theater. These are huge nerves, huge tasks. But for us it is infinitely valuable.


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All participants, youth, teachers and choreographers of our teams say: "Participation in your project is a new step for us." The best are still involved. The best of the best become part of our theatrical project. But they also take it to another level. They show this bar, become our standard-bearers for the entire dance space. Because we already have a serious, great authority in the world of the dance community. We are being monitored and watched. 

It is very valuable for us that even now we can see that our projects are alive. In order for the participants to further promote this level of taste, our views on dance creativity. In order for this to spread further, we have decided to transfer our performances to our favorite and worthy groups.

We have thoughts and our desires, which we hope we can fulfill thanks to the support of the governors. We really want to transfer the play "Prince Vladimir" to Samara to the team "Zadumka" - a very talented team. Samara is a special region for us. Dmitry Azarov, the governor of Samara, is incredibly supportive of our initiatives. It is a great responsibility for me that I was invited by him to participate in the work of the group on culture under the State Council, which he heads. In Samara, we can develop many of our projects and then broadcast them to other regions. 

The support of the governors is a very big force. What happiness that there is an understanding of the need for what we are doing. 

- What is the next step for the award and the competition? Where to go next? All of Russia knows you, what will you take next?

- The creation of this award is not our ambition. Are we thinking about how to make our learning projects more effective and more interesting? How to get closer and deeper with tutorials? This is very important! 

- What is your most vivid impression in the 10 years of the contest's existence?

- There are many of them. In each project, it is a meeting with new guys who become your team, your troupe for some time. You fall madly in love with them, get to know them, watch how they work. 

There are incredible moments. For example, in our first performance. A guy from the team was standing next to me backstage, and he tells me: “Your costume is cool.” It's so great, because when he says this, he feels like a part of this single space - me, him, the artists. He understands this for sure, that now we are all one family. We are one creative organism.

This is an amazing energy that comes from the dancing youth. They dance in amateur groups, but they do it with such dedication that the stage of the Bolshoi Theater knew in the era of the stellar golden generation of the Bolshoi Theater, to which my father belonged, among other things. It doesn't matter if this guy or girl is in the front line or the last one, they work like it's their last show. It's so cool! So unforgettable. For them, this level of dedication and the ability to work on stage with such dedication is absolutely amazing. We set this task for them together with their leaders. We get it. It's great. 

Some of them will join the ranks of folk ensembles in the regions. Ensembles of Siberia love to replenish their ranks with such guys and girls from amateur groups.  

- Ilze, for several years you worked on the Orpheus radio, hosted the Ballet FM program. Are you thinking about a television cycle? For example, "Big Ballet at Big Asia!"

- Great thoughts! If the Big Asia channel invites me, I'll be happy to think about it.


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