Notes and Editorial Reviews
“One of the best dance films every made” – NY Times
Spartacus is the Bolshoi doing what the Bolshoi does best: interpreting contemporary works whose thematic origins are classic.
Vladimir Vasiliev, “a dancer of unshakable heroic optimism, exceptional virtuosity, and irresistible dynamism” (Horst Koegler), is perfect as Spartacus. Natalia Bessmertnova, one of the Bolshoi’s most lyrical, feminine dancers, is also seen in one of her finest roles.
Anna Kisselgoff, dance critic of The New York Times, writes “Yuri Grigorovich’s Spartacus already familiar to American audiences, comes into its own here as both ballet and film. The inherent cinematic approach in Mr. Grigorovich’s staging of Aram
Khachaturian’s score falls perfectly in place…Vladimir Vasiliev, as the slave who leads an unsuccessful revolt against the Romans, dances and acts on a heroic level that is the performance of a lifetime. Marius Liepa matches him on every point magnificently as the villain, the Roman general Crassus, Natalia Bessmertnova and Nina Timofeyeva round out the ballet’s great original cast. With its phalanxes confronting the camera head-on and its slow-motion shots of Mr. Vasiliev soaring through the sky, the film takes its chances. It is also one of the best dance films ever made.”
Running Time: 92 minutes
Format: NTSC, 4.3 Full Screen, Dolby 2.0
Works on This Recording
Spartacus by Aram Khachaturian
Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1954/1968; USSR
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