TALLINN - In total 185,548 ballet and opera lovers attended altogether 398 performances at the Estonian National Opera during 2019.
The most popular productions this year included the ballets "Alice in Wonderland" by Gianluca Schiavoni and "The Nutcracker" by Tchaikovsky as well as the musical "Fiddler on the Roof" by Jerry Bock. 10,544 people visited the opera and ballet house as part of educational projects.
Among the most memorable events of the year were the national opera's guest performances at the Moscow Bolshoi Theater from Jan. 9 to 12, as part of which a 300-strong troupe traveled to Moscow.
On May 24, the legendary musical "West Side Story" by Leonard Bernstein premiered at the national opera. For the first time in Estonia, it was possible to hear the musical in Estonian as well as in English.
In addition to Tallinn, the national opera also gave performances in Tartu, Paide, Johvi, Viljandi, Haapsalu, Parnu and Rakvere.
At the start of the 114th season this fall, Arvo Volmer started work as the new artistic director and chief conductor of the Estonian National Opera and Linnar Looris as the artistic director of the Estonian National Ballet.
Volmer was also the artistic director and chief conductor of the national opera in 2004-2012, and worked as the music director and chief conductor of the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Australia from 2004.
Looris became a principal dancer with the Estonian National Ballet in 2001. He joined Birmingham Royal Ballet as a soloist in 2006 and Houston Ballet in 2007, and has since then danced a variety of leading roles.
The National Opera will see off 2019 at the traditional New Year's Eve Ball. Next year's premieres include an operetta by Franz Lehar, "The Count of Luxembourg", a ballet by Marina Kesler, "Anna Karenina", and an opera by Giuseppe Verdi, "Giovanna d'Arco."