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Applauding great stars of the Czech National Ballet!


Valmont – with exclusive premiere cast – for the last time

Shining ballet personalities, every inch professionals, winners of many awards and inspiring artists who breathed love, passion and originality into their roles will say good bye to their active dancing careers in the Estates Theatre on November 5 as Marquise de Merteuil and Vicomte de Valmont in Libor Vaculík’s successful ballet Valmont.

Marquise de Merteuil – Tereza Podařilová, the first soloist emerita and ballet mistress of the Czech National Ballet
You will close your dancing career in a role that was created especially for you. What did Marquise de Merteuil give you?
“It is a very special role for me in every respect. Libor Vaculík, the choreographer and director, has created it for me and I am very grateful for that. It is interesting that it was Libor Vaculík, too, who stood at the very beginning of my career – I danced Frederika in Malý pan Friedemann (Little Mr. Friedemann). Frederica was quintessentially good. Now I leave the stage in the role of Marquise who is very different – as a wild, dramatic, manipulative woman and evil bitch she stands in total opposition to Frederika. In any case – dancing in Valmont was a beautiful experience, thanks to Libor Vaculík and other colleagues, great dancers. I believe I will enjoy my “last Marquise” but… a new day will come the next morning. As Jan Svěrák says in the film Vratné lahve (Empties): “For any welcome to exist there must be a parting.” When we say farewell to something, we are open to welcome something new. I am looking forward to the last performance – I will part with my past. I feel I owe it to all those who supported me and helped me throughout my career. I know I will be both sad and happy.”

Valmont – Alexandre Katsapov, the first soloist emeritus and ballet master of the Czech National Ballet.
You will close your dancing career in a role that was created especially for you. What did Vicomte de Valmont give you?
“Valmont – it was a great challenge. I have never danced a seducer before! It was exciting in every respect… I needed to wear a double dance belt (laughing). But seriously – I did not know what to expect from the role at the beginning, Vicomte is really no romantic Romeo. And so I was looking for a key. What I like about Valmont is that it is not black and white, there are many layers from seduction and love to betrayal, disappointment, catharsis and death… It is physically demanding, too, I dance nine duets and practically don’t leave the stage in the second act. One duet is over and another one follows immediately, I have no rest. But I enjoy it very much! I am grateful to our artistic director Filip Barankiewicz for giving me and Tereza the opportunity to say good bye to one part of our life. When I saw the good bye of Michal Štípa last year, I sat there with silent envy. I would also like to thank Libor Vaculík for creating Valmont for me. Well, and I have to thank myself! I am 44 years old and still able to dance this role.”

The complete interview is to be found in the National Theatre Magazine.

Tereza Podařilová and Alexandre Katsapov are saying good by to their dancing careers.
Series of performances in the 2019/2020 season.

photo: Mario Bakuš