Last Friday we got the chance to attend an opera at the famous Bolshoi theatre in Moscow. We were very lucky to have been invited by a colleague of Wim, because from what we’ve heard it’s quite difficult to get hold of tickets for the Bolshoi.
We were also lucky because it was Carmen, an opera we were more or less familiar with. Although it’s an opera in French, it was very difficult to make out the words and unfortunately the surtitles were only in Russian, which wasn’t very helpful!
Nevertheless it was enjoyable. The opera was lovely – to my surprise it’s actually not the bits that are the most famous that are also the most beautiful! And the theatre was immensely impressive and already forms an attraction in itself. As witness the pictures …
By the way, did you know that “bolshoi” means “large” or “grand” in Russian? At the time of the construction of the theatre (in 1825), big cities used to have two theatres: one for opera and ballet and one for plays. Because opera and ballet were considered nobler than drama, the opera houses were named “Grand theatres” (Bolshoi theatres) and the drama theatres were called “Small theatres” (Maly theatres).