BORIS EIFMAN is one of the few, if not the only Russian choreographer, who continued his active creative work for decades. Perhaps none of his contemporaries can take pride in such achievements. There are more than forty performances on the director’s account. He was the laureate of the prestigious theatrical awards «Golden Soffit» and «Golden Mask», of the State Prize of Russian Federation, received the Order of Arts and Letters of France, the People’s Artist of Russia title, Order of Merit for the Fatherland and many other prizes and titles.
The choreographer was born in Siberia, finished the department of choreography of Leningrad (St. Petersburg) Conservatory. In 1977 he organized Leningrad New Ballet (today called Saint Petersburg Eifman Ballet), the only individually managed theatre in Russia, developing the art of modern choreography. He did not only create an original style, which absorbed the achievements of new time art and which is based on the classical school, but also brought up a team of kindred spirit, for whom no unsolvable tasks exist.
The current Company’s repertory includes the following works that have been already recognized worldwide are «Requiem», «Tchaikovsky», «I, Don Quixote», «The Karamazovs», «Red Giselle», «My Jerusalem», «Russian Hamlet», «Don Juan, or Moliere Passions», «WHO is WHO», «Musagete», «Anna Karenina», «The Seagull», «Onegin» and the most recent one «Rodin».
Boris Eifman is a choreographer-philosopher. He is concerned with the problems of the modern world; with the secrets of creativity and the magic of geniuses, which uncover themselves in his interpretation of the fates of Tchaikovsky, Spesivtseva, Moliere or Rodin. He makes experiments with such dark and fearful sphere as human psyche («Idiot», «Murderers», «I, Don Quixote», «Russian Hamlet» and «Anna Karenina»), creating the images of stage psychoanalysis. He strives for showing extreme states of human mind, regarding his heroes` madness not as an illness but as their ability to penetrate into another worlds. The choreographer pulls apart the limits of his imagination with the help of his heroes` fantasies, deepening in the questions of spiritual and philosophic life of humankind, which interest him most.
Boris Eifman’s desire to draw his spectators into the inexhaustible world of human passions, to establish live spiritual connections with the audience, to stun it with brilliance and dynamism of plastic language – all this determined the success that accompanies the theatre’s performances on the leading stage venues of the world for decades. The choreographer marks: «The spectator wants to receive from a ballet performance, first of all, a catharsis, a deep emotional shock. And visiting our performances, he receives this live emotional charge. We aspire to that the psychological theatre would be the privilege not only of a drama, but also of a ballet. And from this point of view we are unique. Such type of theatre to which our Company belongs – with the strong dramaturgic base, the deep philosophical maintenance and high heat of passions - is necessary for many spectators».
Creating his own style Eifman worked at various dancing systems. The theatre became a kind of laboratory for him. The choreographer did not limit himself with the frames of a purely ballet performance, since the most important thing for him is theatricality. His plays are unforgettable shows, revealing new forms and new principles of dancing action. Boris Eifman has created his theatre – a theatre of unconcealed emotional feelings.
Press about Boris Eifman
«Boris Eifman is undoubtedly the most interesting modern Russian choreographer. He has a magnetism of both his own personality and his constant desire for renewal».
«The ballet world in search of a major choreographer need search no more. He is Boris Eifman…»
Anna Kisselgoff, The New York Times
«Eifman’s personal qualities are strength and unrestraint. His nervous “painful style is a cover for the most brilliant skills».
«Boris Eifman will remain one of the most creative artists of Russia».
Anna Kisselgoff, The New York Times
«There is no doubt any longer that the choreographer Boris Eifman is an amazing magician of the theatre. … Probably the only thing one can still have any doubts about is whether he is the last leading choreographer of the 20 century or the first choreographer of the 21st».
Clive Barnes, New York Post
«The artists of Eifman’s theatre are phenomenal. Everybody from the soloists to the perfect corps de ballet. Amazingly skilful and flexible, they can equally purely and vividly perform the most incredible creation of the choreographer and any classical pas and are outstandingly expressive and musical».
Russian Daily – Novoye Russkoye Slovo