With the support of Russian Ministry of Culture, the New National Theatre Ballet, Tokyo, will present its original work, Maki Asami's La Dame aux Camélias, in September 2009 at the Bolshoi Theatre.
The New National Theatre Ballet, Tokyo, received its first invitation to perform overseas last year, appearing at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC in February 2008. The performance at the Bolshoi Theatre will be its second show abroad.
Maki Asami's La Dame aux Camélias had its world premiere at the NNTT 10th Anniversary Festival in November 2007, and the choreographer, Artistic Director Maki Asami, received the 7th Asahi Performing Arts Award for this piece. The official invitation from Russian Minister of Culture Alexander Avdeyev was hand delivered to Aoki Tamotsu (head of Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs), Toyama Atsuko (president of the New National Theatre, Tokyo), and Maki Asami in late June 2008 by Svetlana Zakharova, the prima ballerina of the Bolshoi Ballet, who was in Japan to dance in Swan Lake at the New National Theatre, Tokyo. According to the invitation, in 1957, the government of the Soviet Union sent the Bolshoi Ballet - as the ballet company of the USSR - to perform in Japan for the first time, and 50 years later, in November 2007, the New National Theatre, Tokyo, welcomed the Bolshoi's Zakharova to perform in the debut of Maki Asami's new production of La Dame aux Camélias. This invitation was extended to the New National Theatre as the result of 50 years of ballet exchanges between Russia and Japan. During her meeting with Minister Aoki, Ms. Zakharova, who has performed together with the New National Theatre Ballet, Tokyo, on a number of occasions, said, "The New National Theatre Ballet, Tokyo is a world-class company, and I would like the audiences in Moscow to be able to enjoy their performance; through this, we hope to promote greater Japanese-Russian cultural exchange."
Maki Asami's La Dame aux Camélias is scheduled to be performed at the New National Theatre, Tokyo, in June–July 2010.