Tag Archive: Soobin Lee

At a Gallop

“The Pygmalion Effect”
Hungarian National Ballet
Hungarian State Opera
Budapest, Hungary
June 01, 2024 (matinee)

by Ilona Landgraf
Copyright © 2024 by Ilona Landgraf

1. A.Szegő (Holmes) and ensemble, “The Pygmalion Effect” by B.Eifman, Hungarian National Ballet 2024 © V.Berecz/Hungarian State Opera Boris Eifman’s The Pygmalion Effect took my breath away. The dancers of the Hungarian National Ballet whizzed through two, at times terrifically fast, acts and then appeared at the curtain call as if they had merely finished warming up. Hats off! Budapest’s audience has loved the ballet, which was created for Eifman’s home company in St. Petersburg in 2019 and has been in the Hungarian National Ballet’s repertory since June 2023. At Saturday’s matinee, the house was packed to the roof.

Greek mythology has two Pygmalions; one was the son of King Belus of Tyros, and the other is from Ovid’s Metamorphoses and was a sculptor who fell in love with his creation. This creation—a statue of a woman who was later called Galatea—subsequently came to life. Eifman took inspiration from Ovid’s Pygmalion and the so-called Pygmalion Effect, a psychological phenomenon that was observed in classrooms showing that a teacher’s anticipated judgments about students will cause them to become true. (more…)


“Little Corsaire”
Hungarian National Ballet Institute and Hungarian National Ballet
Eiffel Art Studios
Budapest, Hungary
May 31, 2024

by Ilona Landgraf
Copyright © 2024 by Ilona Landgraf

1. L.Berki, Z.E.Albert, and J.É.Pollák (Odalisques), “Little Corsaire” by O.Chernakova et al., Hungarian National Ballet Institute & Hungarian National Ballet 2024 © A.Nagy/Hungarian State Opera The best way to nurture young talent and groom a new generation of dance enthusiasts is a concern for many ballet companies. The Hungarian National Ballet and its affiliated Ballet Institute have pursued an impressive strategy to address this issue. Last weekend, they premiered the third children’s production in a row, Little Corsaire, at Eiffel Art Studios. The first series of four performances gave students of various ages ample opportunities to present their skills to the public, which at this premiere consisted of family, friends, and many young children with their parents. The scenes that I observed in the atrium during the break proved that the project has yielded the desired results. Toddlers copied dance steps, and girls—already wearing tutus upon arrival—bounced about excitedly. In a corner behind the old steam locomotive (reminiscent of the venue’s historic role as Northern Railway Maintenance and Engineering Works), the young artists posed for photos with even younger admirers. Some children’s eyes were shining, and hopefully, some of those youngsters will be drawn to the ballet barre too. (more…)