sat 21/09/2019

The Blue God/ The Firebird, Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle, London Coliseum | reviews, news & interviews

The Blue God/ The Firebird, Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle, London Coliseum

The Blue God/ The Firebird, Les Saisons Russes du XXI Siècle, London Coliseum

Russian Diaghilevfest kicks off with half-authentic homage to artistic fantasy

Ilze Liepa as the goddess in the Lotus Flower entwined with Nikolai Tsiskaridze's Blue GodM Logvinov

Anyone who feels, as I do, that the Aesthetic Movement's "cult of beauty" now on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum can't compare with the fabulous Ballets Russes exhibition which went before it can dine again on a feast of Russian colour at the Coliseum. You'll eventually be rewarded, in this Kremlin Ballet-based company's first show, with the closest to the spirit of 1910 a recent London Firebird has ever come. Whether the choreography and the music for The Blue God have more than the loosest connection with Diaghilev is another matter.

Ilze Liepa and Nikolai Tsiskaridze don't have much to do beyond posing, looking mysterious and/or gracious and imitating temple dance with elaborate arm movements

Share this article


Programmes had gone up to £10 by the second performance! Watching Nikolai Tsiskaridze simper and mince as titlular Blue God was an insult to the memory of Nijinsky - shame on all concerned! I turned in my tickets for the other two programmes and will sit at home with my Boris Koschko book on the Ballets Russes; looking at Bakst's designs and listen to the original scores used will probably bring me closer to the originals than this farago.

Add comment

Subscribe to

Thank you for continuing to read our work on For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a gift subscription?


Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters

Advertising feature


A compulsive, involving, emotionally stirring evening – theatre’s answer to a page-turner.
The Observer, Kate Kellaway


Direct from a sold-out season at Kiln Theatre the five star, hit play, The Son, is now playing at the Duke of York’s Theatre for a strictly limited season.



This final part of Florian Zeller’s trilogy is the most powerful of all.
The Times, Ann Treneman


Written by the internationally acclaimed Florian Zeller (The Father, The Mother), lauded by The Guardian as ‘the most exciting playwright of our time’, The Son is directed by the award-winning Michael Longhurst.


Book by 30 September and get tickets from £15*
with no booking fee.