NCPA is one of the very few venues that supports all kinds of art forms. You can always catch a good play over there or even a musical concert. What it also has apart from live performances is the best of world theatre. It is next to impossible for these performances to be live, but we have next best thing where you can catch a screening of popular British plays like Hamlet or one of the numerous performances by Bolshoi Ballet. The theatre purists might scoff at the idea of watching a theatrical performance on screen but isn't that the best we could actually have here?
Wednesday evening where people were coming home from work and would love nothing more than to crash. There were quite a few who made their way to Godrej Dance Theatre where they were screening Bolshoi Ballet's A Hero of our Time. The story is adapted from a novel by Mikhail Lermontov. It follows the adventures of a soldier in the Russian army by the name of Pechorin. The novel is divided into five novellas and is written from the perspective of three different people. The Ballet only adapts three of these stories – Bela, Taman and Princess Mary.
The thing about Ballet is that it is not for everyone. There are people who are extremely moved by the graceful weaving of story they see on screen while there are also people who find the lack of dialogues uninteresting. If you ever wanted to see the power of dance when it comes to narrating a story, you should not miss a performance by Bolshoi Ballet.
Curiously, they use different actors to depict the same character through the stories. You don't understand the reason behind this until all the three actors perform on the stage together. The first story takes place in the Caucasus mountains where Pichorin finds Bela and loses her because of his misdeeds. The second story is Taman where he takes refuge in a house for a night only to discover that a smuggling operation is undergoing right under his nose. After a lot of battles, he chooses to do nothing about it. The third one is the longest and the best. It speaks of Princess Mary and how Pichorin makes her fall in love with him only to get back at Grushnitsky who was also a contender for her affection. For Pichorin, Princess Mary is just a pawn but while wooing her, he loses his true love, Vera, too. A Hero of our Time is essentially a story about a man who might have done heroic deeds (being a soldier) but essentially how he treats the other aspects of life makes him an anti-hero.
If you have a love for ballet, watching it on the screen will actually not make a huge difference. Although there is an added bonus where they take you behind the scenes and let you meet the music conductor and the choreographer of the ballet.
Bolshoi Ballet is a world-renowned theatre company and they have a good many productions to their name. You shouldn't miss any of them and you can catch them all at NCPA.
Upcoming Bolshoi Ballet screenings: