10. THEATER: Nijinksky’s Last Dance
With Russia making news for its so-called gay propaganda law and generally hostile climate, it seems appropriate to point out some of the LGBT people who have done much for Russian (and world) culture. This work by gay playwright Norman Allen explores the art and tortured psyche of the great early-20th-century Russian ballet dancer Vaslav Nijinsky, who, though he eventually married a woman, had many affairs with men, including Ballets Russe impresario Sergei Diaghilev. He also suffered from schizophrenia, which effectively ended his career, and the play portrays him recalling his life and the key people in it as he fights for his sanity. The arts group CulturalDC has brought the Mladinsko Theatre’s production from Slovenia to Washington, D.C., as a companion to the National Gallery of Art’s exhibition “Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes, 1909-1929,” which has a section on Nijinsky. The play is presented in Slovenian with English subtitles, in a limited engagement, next Monday through Friday at Cultural DC’s Mead Theatre Lab at Flashpoint. The National Gallery exhibit, which has been open since May, continues through October 6.