My plans were to see an actual ballet performance in St. Petersburg over the holidays, but it looks like I’ll have to settle for the next best thing – watching The Nutcracker, a classic holiday ballet, at a movie theater near me. Moscow’s Bolshoi Theater, one of the world’s top stages, makes their performances available in HD to cinemas around the world. This season, they’re doing Jewels by George Balanchine, a must-see Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky, and The Pharaoh's Daughter by Marius Petipa. Granted, nothing compares to seeing these classics in real life, but if you’re craving a top-quality ballet, it could be a viable fix. Bonus: buttery popcorn, unavailable at Russian theaters.
This year, like many others, I’m spending the winter holidays with my family. My hometown can’t boast a vibrant heritage since it’s pretty young (although there’s one local museum here).
Instead, I’d like to have a cultural adventure in a more narrow sense by making a family tree. Over time, it’s gotten challenging to gain such knowledge first-hand, so I hope to explore some family archives and annoy my relatives with numerous questions. By now, it is the least I can do to learn more about my closest ancestors and preserve such memories. Moreover, there are always curious facts that pop up when researching. Who knows, maybe this time I’ll find Romanovs in our bloodline.
Winter break is (for me) all about doing things I never have time for – anything from binging on books and movies to going to various museums. These holidays are no exception. My ultimate plan for the upcoming time-off is to discover and rediscover the many wonders of the city and its neighboring areas. I have a whole list of spots I’d like to head to: Igora, Vyborg, Nikolsky Market, and so on. Following the lead of the tourist vibe, I’d love to visit just as many exhibitions as possible. For instance, it’s still not too late to explore Serenity and Delight at Manege or Leda Atomica at Faberge Museum. And, surely, this is a great time to finally watch the cinematic greats at home. Hopefully, all this won’t remain just a plan.
Having just visited most, but not all, exhibitions I've been waiting for to launch in December, over the holidays I would love to spend my days reading. There is a sizable copy of David Copperfield eyeing me from my bookshelf and several of my to-be-reads already on my Kindle, so I think I am all set for an exciting week. Another thing on my plan is more of a spiritual or mental health-related one: I'd love to get back to meditating and disciplining the mind so that I can, among other things, connect to art on a deeper level without being constantly distracted. In other words, this is going to be a, hopefully, peaceful and resettling week that will start the year off on the right track.
Lately, I started to rediscover various museums, including the ones located in my hometown, Pskov – it’s fun to return and see the exhibitions you vaguely remember in addition to newly-added objects and design features. One of my favorite locations there is Chambers of Postnikov, a huge beautifully restored medieval building with lots of cool exhibitions. For example, right now a collection of decorative glazed tiles made by local masters is on display there and I’m looking forward to visiting it.