The crisis that has shaken the Bucharest National Opera ballet company in recent weeks has had repercussions not only on the international dance world, but also on Romanian politics. And ultimately, it was a government-brokered plan that paved the way for the return on Wednesday of the company’s two biggest stars: its artistic director, Johan Kobborg, and dancer Alina Cojocaru, who both resigned this month. below clashing with management over direction. the company.
“He’s back in the office and I’m finally in the studio,” Ms Cojocaru said in a phone interview from Bucharest.
The ballet company’s prominence has grown since Mr Kobborg, a Danish former principal of the Royal Danish Ballet and the Royal Ballet in London, became its artistic director two years ago, and his fiancee, Ms Cojocaru , a star who is director of the English National Ballet, has returned to her hometown of Bucharest as a permanent guest artist. Both worked to improve the reputation of the company, bringing new dancers and repertoire to Bucharest.
But they resigned on April 12 after new management took over the opera and removed Mr Kobborg’s ‘artistic director’ title from the company’s website, saying he technically did not exist in the hierarchy. official. His name was placed among the “artists” of the ballet company, a lower rank comparable to the corps de ballet in other companies.
The move caused an uproar among international dance fans and raised questions about the company’s degree of ambition or internationality, while reigniting nationalist tensions after a protester denounced “outsiders” during of a gathering in front of the opera.
An April 28 gala has been canceled. Bitter accusations have been exchanged, including questions raised about a gala for the society held last year in New York. (Ms Cojocaru said her finances were handled properly and the contracts, which she posted on social media, confirm this.)
Romanian Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos met Ms. Cojocaru. And this week the country’s culture minister, Vlad Alexandrescu, brokered a deal to bring a new acting director to the opera for three months and for the return of Mr Kobborg and Ms Cojocaru.
Now the business will have to turn to healing and dancing. “We are very happy,” Ms. Cojocaru said, “to be supported on this journey ahead.”