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1 Jul 2016
Andreas Christou on the Great Ballet Festival, the Russian ballet and Swan Lake

Мэр Лимассола Андреас Христу

Мэр Лимассола Андреас Христу During the Great Ballet Festival, the Russian Ballet from St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Theatre will delight the residents of Cyprus with an academic version of Swan Lake, choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov in 1895.  The performance will take place in Limassol, at the Municipal Park on the 1st and 2nd July.

In an exclusive interview with the official media sponsors of the event, Russian Radio and Cyprus Inform, the Mayor of Limassol, Andreas Christou, talked to us about the development of Cypriot-Russian relations and his love of the ballet.

“The Great Ballet Festival in Cyprus usually invites the well known ballet troupes.  This time it’s the Russian Ballet from St. Petersburg.  Why?”

A.Ch: “This is the 17th year of The Great Ballet Festival being organised in Limassol, and during that time classical academic and modern dance troupes from the Bolshoi, Mariinsky and Boris Eifman Theatres have performed, as well as dancers from Israel, Switzerland, Spain, Ireland, the UK, France and Hungary.

This year it’s the Russian Ballet from St. Petersburg Hermitage Theatre.  It’s no surprise as, in addition to the high professionalism of the dancers, St. Petersburg is the sister city of Limassol!   

Within the framework of strengthening relations with St. Petersburg, we take a group of children from our twin-city orphanages every year.  This time, on 1st August, they will stay here for 15 days, and In November Limassol is scheduled to visit the Governor of St. Petersburg.”

Балет «Лебединое озеро»“What do you plan to talk about with the Governor of St. Petersburg?”

A.Ch: “Together with ITMO (St. Petersburg National Research University of InformationTechnologies, Mechanics and Optics), we are preparing a project – the large photovoltaic park that will produce electricity from the Sun’s energy and, most importantly, convert it into hydrogen.  Storing the electrical current at night is difficult, but not so with hydrogen, so this will give us the opportunity to sell electricity at night when supplies are lower due to higher consumption.  This is a very interesting project which has the support of both governments.  This is the issue we will be discussing and, maybe, we will sign an agreement.

Talking about Cypriot-Russian relations, we should also mention the Cypriot-Russian Festival.  I believe it’s the largest festival in Europe by the number of people taking part.  Perhaps in the future we will invite more musical bands and even extend the festival by a further 3 days.”

“Festivals in Cyprus, like the Great Ballet, are usually held during the tourist season, but who visits these events more – the locals or the tourists?”

A.Ch: “Generally about 80% of the audience is Cypriot, but they are not just the residents of Limassol, people come here from all over the island because the ballet is very popular in Cyprus. In Limassol, for example, there are 130 private dance schools and studios.

As for tourists, in my opinion the Great Ballet Festival provides a great opportunity to see a performance by a well known ballet troupe.  If a person goes to France, for example, it would be difficult to get tickets to the National Theatre of Marseille, whereas it’s much easier in Cyprus.”

“Talking about the possibility of seeing the show, what’s the price of tickets?”

Ch: “Thanks to our sponsors, the Ministry of Education and Culture, RCB Bank, Russian Radio, Cyprus Inform plus other Russian and Cypriot companies, we’ve tried to keep ticket prices to affordable levels. The most expensive ticket now costs about €25. The average price is €20, €15 and €10 depending on the location in the auditorium, so going to the ballet is equally accessible to both locals and tourists.”

Мэр Лимассола Андреас Христу “Will you be going to Swan Lake?

Сh: “Yes of course I will. I do love the ballet, and always go to the ballet performances with my wife when I have free time. Swan Lake is one of the classical ballets and is worth seeing it performed by Russian artists, because the most interesting performances were in Russia. Also, the music by Tchaikovsky is amazing and is another reason to go. Tickets are inexpensive and you will have an enjoyable and unforgettable experience.

A reminder that, due to ‘shares’ on the official Russian Radio in Cyprus page on Facebook, free tickets have already been given to two girls – Tatiana Samani and Angelina Sadrieya, and we send our congratulations to them!”

You, your relatives and friends, can also enjoy the legendary love story of Odette, the Swan Queen, and Prince Siegfried!

Tickets for Swan Lake Ballet are available from:

  •, tel: 7777 7040;
  • Irinis Street 158, tel: 25 878744;
  • the theatre box office tel: 25 582268.