The Bolshoi Ballet has announced that they will not be premiering their newest work, "Nureyev," next week. The new highly anticipated work centers around famed ballet dancer Rudolf Nureyev, who defected from the Soviet Union in the Cold War, became an international ballet star, then passed away tragically at the age of 54.
The reasoning for the cancellation is still unknown at this time; however, many are speculating it is related to the director of the ballet company, Kirill Serebrennikov, who was recently involved in an investigation surrounding alleged embezzlement of state arts funding. There are also reports that the ballet may depict people who are still living and operating in the public eye.
Serebrennikov, the director of the Bolshoi, has been quite vocal in his criticism of both Russian authorities and the increase of censorship of the arts in the country. Some of his supporters claim that the cancellation has occurred for political reasons.
The Bolshoi has reportedly stated that the premiere of the work has not be canceled, but simply postponed until later, when it will be ready to run. In the meantime, Don Quixote will be performed on several of the nights originally scheduled for Nureyev.