"Kratt" returns

Ballet "Kratt" (the Goblin) by Eduard Tubin (choreographed by Marina Kesler) returns to the stage of Estonian National Opera. The upcoming performances will introduce new dancers into the main roles - William Newton, Marcus Nilson, Ketlin Oja and Anna Roberta. 

"Carmen ❤ Jazz" returns as a vast open air show

This experimental composition combines iconic arias and duets from Bizet’s “Carmen” with the free flowing musicality of Estonian Dream Big Band. "Carmen Loves Jazz" had its first night last summer at Saaremaa Opera Days and will return for only one performance at the massive open air stage of Viljandi Song Square on June 2nd, 2018.

"Kratt" goes to Russia and Finland

Ballet "Kratt" (choreographed by Marina Kesler) lights up the stage of Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg on October 23th and Alexander Theatre in Helsinki on November 21-22, 2017. The guest performances coincide with the release of the DVD of the production. DVD was produced by Estonian Public Broadcasting and directed by a seasoned TV director Ruti Murusalu who specializes in capturing dance on film. 

"Carmen Loves Jazz" at Saaremaa Opera Days

An experimental composition by Siim Aimla combines iconic arias and duets from Bizet’s “Carmen” with the free flowing musicality of Estonian Dream Big Band. "Carmen Loves Jazz" is directed by Marina Kesler and has it's first night on July 20th at Saaremaa Opera Days.

"Kratt" guest performances IN Tartu

Today ballet "Kratt" (The Goblin) by Eduard Tubin has two long anticipated guest performances at Vanemuine Theatre, Tartu.

The choreographer of the piece is Marina Kesler, music director Vello Pähn, set designer Madis Nurms, costume designer Gerly Tinn, lights by Karmen Tellisaar and video by Argo Valdmaa.

"Kratt" at the Helikon Opera

This Sunday, October 16th, ballet "Kratt" (The Goblin) by Eduard Tubin will be performed at the Helikon Opera. Helikon Opera is a Russian opera company based in Moscow, specializing in unconventional productions. The company was founded by stage director Dmitry Bertman and gave its first performance in 1990.

"Kratt" comes back to life

As of September "Kratt" (the Goblin) is back on the stage of Estonian National Opera. "Kratt" holds a special importance for the Estonians since it is based on national folklore and is also the first ballet with a score by an Estonian composer, Eduard Tubin.

Premiere of Undine today

Ballet "Undine" by Marina Kesler premieres today in the Estonian National Opera.  Ballet celebrates the 70th anniversary of Tallinn Ballet School and in the leading roles are this year's graduates Marita Weinrank and Marjana Fazullina alongside with Jevgeni Grib, soloist of Estonian National Ballet.


 "Undine" by Marina Kesler had it's first rehearsal on the stage of Estonian National Opera today.  See the design HERE >>

Undine in Estonian National Opera

An original ballet Undine by Marina Kesler premieres May 29th in the Estonian National Opera. 

It is loosely based on the 1939 play “Ondine” by French dramatist Jean Giradoux and revolves around soulless water nymphs undines. Though inspired by mythical concept, the ballet explores day-to-day themes of faithfulness, jealousy and rage. 

In the main roles are soloists of Estonian National Ballet and Tallinn Ballet School.

Undine, also spelled Ondine, is a mythological figure of European tradition, a female water nymph who becomes human when she falls in love with a man but is doomed to die if he is unfaithful to her. 

Undine was first mentioned in the writings of the Swiss author Paracelsus, who put forth his theory that there are spirits called “undines” who inhabit the element of water.  The word is from the Latin unda, meaning “wave” or “water.”

See the design HERE >>

Article about blackface in opera

In the March issue of Estonian magazine Teater.Muusika.Kino an article by Madis Nurms about blackface makeup and it’s usage in opera can be found. Blackface is a form of theatrical makeup used by performers to represent a black person. By the mid-20th century, changing attitudes about race and racism effectively ended the prominence of blackface makeup used in performance in theatre.  One major exception is opera where blackface is still today widely regarded as normal and acceptable.

Contemporary scenographer can approach the usage of black makeup in operas like “Aida” and “Otello” in basically three different ways:  a) use it in decorative fashion - see it separated  from it’s social context and historical background  b ) in declaratory way  - using it to stress the issues of race and racism ( a la Hans Neuenfels ) or c ) to abandon its use altogether.

Full article (in Estonian) can be read HERE >>

Premiere of "Kratt" tonight

The ballet "Kratt" will open tonight at the Estonian National Opera. 
The set design combines stories from Estonian folklore with contemporary themes and materials. The two acts of the ballet are supported by two main figures in the set design - a sleek factory, constructed of aluminium and sheer plastic, and wooden but soulless tree. Geometrical shapes used in the design elements are inspired by embroidery patterns.

Video teaser of ballet "Kratt"

Production preview video of ballet "Kratt" (Goblin) at the Estonian National opera. Some parts of the set design will make their debut at the end of this video.

Parts of "Kratt" on the stage for the first time

Ballet Kratt

“The Goblin” is the first Estonian ballet as well as Eduard Tubin’s first work for a music theatre. The work is based on a mythical character from Estonian folklore, the Goblin, whose sole purpose is to serve his greedy master, the Farmer, in obtaining riches. In Marina Kesler’s rendition, the story crosses the borders of one nation’s folklore: in a contemporary money-hungry world the Goblin is like a voice in people’s head, finding excuses why there is never enough money.

From the workshops of Kratt

The preparations of ballet "Kratt" ("The Goblin") are well on their way in the Workshops of Estonian National Opera. The ballet is based on Estonian folklore, the composer of the piece is Eduard Tubin, choreographer Marina Kesler, stage designer Madis Nurms, costume designer Gerly Tinn, lights by Karmen Tellisaar and video by Argo Valdmaa.

See the design HERE >>

"Kratt" at the Estonian National Opera

In September 2015 a new production on "Kratt" ("The Goblin") - a ballet by Estonian composer Eduard Tubin will be staged at the Estonian National Opera. The choreographer of the production will be Marina Kesler, set designer Madis Nurms.

See the design HERE >>