Bolt. 6 December 2014 – 28 February 2015. GRAD: Gallery for Russian Arts and Design
This Winter, GRAD: Gallery for Russian Arts and Design present an exhibition on experimental ballet ‘The Bolt’, Dmitri Shostakovich’s controversial 1931 production, through costumes, set-design and period photographs. Curated by GRAD’s Elena Sudakova and Alexandra Chiriac, the exhibition is organised in collaboration with the St Petersburg State Museum of Theatre and Music.
That ‘The Bolt’ was produced in 1931 is significant. Shostakovich was commissioned by the Moscow Art Theatre to compose the score to a ballet that would serve and support the goals of socialism and communism. Combining circus music, waltzes, marches and tangos together with popular tunes, the composer envisaged the piece to be a celebration of the proletariat. Nonetheless, ‘The Bolt’ was banned by the Soviet authorities amongst suspicions that it was a satirical work.