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STAGE >Count Dracula comes back to life on Ankara stage

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This November Ankara Opera and Ballet showcases a world premiere, ‘Dracula.’ The newly created ballet show is about love and drama that Count Dracula once lived

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This November Ankara Opera and Ballet showcases a world premiere,‘Dracula.’ AA photo

This November Ankara Opera and Ballet showcases a world premiere,‘Dracula.’ AA photo

Prince Vlad, known as Vlad the Impaler from Ottoman times, is no stranger to the silver screen and TV in his role as Count Dracula. Now his story will be told through a slightly different medium as a ballet show seeks to depict the classic tale for the first time at the Ankara State Opera and Ballet.

The two-act ballet will stage its world premiere in Ankara on Nov. 30. The work, music and libretto belong to Bujor Hoinic, who has already shared the story of the Transylvanian cult character before.

There is a little bit of reality in every legend, he said, adding that in Romanian, Dracula means “the devil.” The prince is known for his thirst for blood and having killed many people in his quest to quench his thirst, which led to the saying that he fed himself with blood. It is in this manner that vampire stories began to be told in the village and then spread to the whole area.

Hoinic said the locals knew the prince as someone who was not as cruel as others thought him to be. “For Romanians, Dracula is not a scary character. He lived for 500 years and lost all his loved ones. He can wander around at night by himself and this means he is lonely. People think that he had a hard life and that’s why they approach him with love and sympathy.”

Different interpretation of Dracula seen on stage

In ballet, on the other hand, Dracula is depicted as a noble and highly cultured man. He is a nobleman who is looking for real love, said Hoinic. “When he finds his true love, he bites her and with this act he gives both of them the chance to live forever as a vampire.”

In short, the Dracula story is in fact a love story, according to Hoinic.

Because there are no details on the real identity of Dracula, Hoinic said there is no reason to expect any negative reaction to the work.

Hoinic said he prepared the work in 2006 within 18 months. It is a very hard production to be staged, he said, noting that it was also quite a long play.

“There is both comedy and drama in this ballet. The audience will witness a Dracula that is both funny and scary,” said Hoinic.

Noting that it was possible to reach every kind of audience, young and old, Hoinic said there were many aspects of the play that would be relatable to all theater-goers.

The ballet has been staged with reflections and inspirations from the book, as well as the film “Dracula” – meaning the piece includes both classic and popular notions.

During the creation of the production, Hionic said he had researched into the matter and realized that among all of the Vampire series Dracula is the most popular and well-known character.

The choreography of the ballet was composed by Nugzar and Medeia Magalashvili, while the decor was created by Savaş Camgöz. The costumes of the ballet were made by Gülay Korkut. Dancers Eren Keleş, Murat Spence, Kuzey Kıyıcan and İlhan Durgut will also be on stage as Dracula.

The ballet show is expected to draw a large number of people because it is the world premiere.

November/28/2013

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