Before the performance I was looking for an ATM to get cash and stumbled across St John’s Estonian Lutheran Church. Apparently it was used by the Soviets as offices. When communism fell, the Estonian community, and probably also the Estonian government, rebuilt it in 1995. By the look of the pictures at the entrance it was a huge project.
It was a wonderful experience to see Nutcracker last night, in the theatre where it was first performed in 1892.
I have very happy memories as a child of hearing this music played on a 45 EP on our first record player. In those days I had no idea it was a ballet, but I loved the music.
I was in a box last night. Around me was a proud father with his 5 year old daughter, she was transfixed for the whole night and was quietly taking it all in. Next to me was a woman with her 8 year old grandson Victor (who wanted to practice English with me: “hello”, “good evening”, “that is red”.) Victor wasn’t so impressed and was a bit restless. When we were leaving, the Babushka rang someone, presumably Victor’s parents to pick them up. I overheard her saying something like “he was sitting still some of the time”.
Going home in the number 6 bus was no problem.
The Mariinsky theatre is showint its age a little, but rather than renovating it, they have built a new theatre right next to it, with the unimaginative name “Mariinsky-2”. Nevertheless, it looks good and I might try going there as well.