Moscow Ballet and NextVR are Pioneering the Way Audiences Interact with the Arts

All NEW Moscow Ballet high-resolution images and video: www.nutcracker.com/promo

Images of Anna Trofimova in Motion Capture session: available here

(Pittsfield, Mass.) December 2, 2019 – Moscow Ballet and NextVR are teaming up to bring 19th century ballet classics into the technological era of the 21st century. The two are partnering for the second year in a row to offer performances of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker in virtual reality.

One of the world’s largest touring ballet companies, traveling to more than 140 cities annually, may seem like an unlikely partner for the world’s largest direct to consumer Virtual Reality platform, but NextVR’s VP of Content, Danny Keens, says that giving audiences unprecedented access is what they're all about.

“Virtual Reality is changing the way people experience live events and giving ballet fans the opportunity to be part of an immersive audience for this show is at the very core of what we do best at NextVR” Keens said “This magnificent ballet ensemble is a unique experience in VR and it was a no brainer to create this experience for our fans during the holidays.”

Moscow Ballet’s North American Tour producer Akiva Talmi echoed Keens sentiment acknowledging the use of VR in ballet has the opportunity to present the performing arts to new audiences, “Moscow Ballet and NextVR’s pioneering technology have expanded the audience experience. We are changing and expanding the way children and families around the world will experience this art form.”

Fans will have the opportunity to tune in to two live VR performances of the Great Russian Nutcracker. The show will premiere on Thursday, December 19 at 6 p.m. PT and air again as a live encore on Monday, December 25 at 6 p.m. PT. Both airings will be available on Oculus Go and Oculus Quest only in the NextVR application, as well as Oculus Venues. Following the December 25 performance, the show will be available on demand in the NextVR application on Oculus GearVR, Oculus Go, Oculus Rift and Oculus Quest. The performance will appear on all NextVR platforms from January 19, 2020.

This isn’t the first time Moscow Ballet ventured into the technological advancements of the modern world. In October, Moscow Ballet ballerina Anna Trofimova participated in a motion capture session with ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena. Her dance movements were tracked using sensors placed on her body and those movements will become part of the Interaction Design Department’s library of body movements for students to study.

“Thanks to Motion Capture we are able to reach a new level of understanding to how our body works while we are dancing. This technology makes it possible to study all details deeply and bring your dance closer to perfection,” Trofimova said. “Ballet, like everything in the world moving forward all the time. It’s impossible to know what the future holds.”

Talmi agrees this is just the beginning for the ballet and technology. He hopes to one day expand Moscow Ballet’s virtual reality repertory to include performances of The Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, Gisele, Coppelia, La Bayadere and Cinderella.

“The traditions and culture of these classics won't change, but the way audiences interact with them will, and it’s important that Moscow Ballet continues its mission of presenting the beauty of ballet to as many people possible.”

Moscow Ballet – 2019 marks the 27th annual North American tour of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet and more classic Russian ballets. In many tour cities, Moscow Ballet implements its signature Community Engagement programs, “Dance with Us,” “New Horizons – A Children’s Program for Life,” and Musical Wunderkind, engaging American children of all ages and abilities in interactive art experiences. Principal dancers include Iryna Borysova, recipient of Bronze from Kiev’s International Ballet Competition; Alexandra Elagina noted as “brimful with feeling” by NYTimes Chief Dance Critic Alastair Macaulay; and Natalia Gubanova, graduate of the St Petersburg Vaganova Ballet Academy. Kostyantyn Vinovoy has been named Honored Artist of Ukraine.

Talmi Entertainment - is the exclusive representation for Moscow Ballet’s North American Tour which occurs annually in more than 140 cities, from NYC to LA, and Miami to Calgary. Under Talmi Entertainment management, Moscow Ballet delivers unparalleled Russian artistry in the classic story ballets Great Russian Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Swan Lake and more. Talmi Entertainment was founded by Akiva Talmi; producer, composer and recipient of the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Richard Rodgers, and Leonard Bernstein Awards. www.talmientertainment.com

About NextVR

NextVR is the world’s best virtual reality platform for delivering live sports and music in VR to fans globally. Launched in 2009, the company has patented technology that delivers an unparalleled VR experience providing fans extraordinary access and profound immersion. NextVR has world-class partnerships with leaders in sports and entertainment, including the NBA, NHL, WWE, FOX Sports, Live Nation, and the International Champions Cup. NextVR was founded by industry leaders with decades of experience in 3D stereoscopic imaging, compression technology and VR broadcasting. For more information, visit NextVR.com.

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