Winter 2001 (9.4)
The ballet of "Caspian
Ballad" by Tofig Bakikhanov (1930- ) was performed
for the first time in 25 years at Baku's Opera and Ballet Theater
on November 4 2001.
The ballet's choreography, created by Siyavush Mammadzade and
Tamilla Shiraliyeva, relates directly to Azerbaijan. Oil workers
in the Caspian rejoice as a new oil well gushes, but their celebration
is soon tempered when a violent windstorm sparks a fire on the
water. The workers manage to subdue the flames and return to
the difficult task of extracting oil from the sea.
said he was inspired to write the ballet in 1966 after paying
a visit to Oily Rocks, the world's first
offshore oil drilling project. "I was struck by the nature
of the sea - sometimes it's calm, sometimes it's turbulent and
violent. It seemed like the perfect setting for a ballet."
To his knowledge, the Caspian Ballad is the only ballet based
on a story of man subduing the mighty forces of sea and oil.
At the recent performances, Tamilla Shiraliyeva served as Producer-Choreographer,
with Javanshir Jafarov as conductor. New sets were designed by
Tahir Tahirov and Agharahim Aliyev. According to Bakikhanov,
the ballet has not been performed in Baku for decades because
the original sets and costumes were so outdated.
Other ballets by Honored Art Worker Bakikhanov include "Eastern
Novel" and "The Good and the Bad," written for
Nizami's 850th Jubilee.
Listen to excerpts
from Tofig Bakikhanov's "Caspian
Below: Rauf Abdullayev conducts
the Azerbaijan Symphonic Orchestra performing "Caspian Ballad"
ballet, composed by Tofig Bakikhanov, which is now being revived
after 25 years.
(9.4) Winter 2001.
© Azerbaijan International 2002. All rights reserved.
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