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Alexander Brullov was commissioned to design the new theatre building. It had to  match the existing ensemble of Mikhailovsky Square, now Arts Square. On 8 November 1833, on the name day of the Grand duke Mikhail, brother of  Emperor Nicholas I, the curtain rose for the first time in the new theatre. The  same year the French troupe, which had previously shared the stage with Russian actors in another recently completed theatre, the Alexandrinsky, moved into the new building. Thus began the eighty-five year-long life of the French Theatre in St  Petersburg. It was run by the Imperial Theatres Company, which was under the direct control of the Ministry of the Imperial Court. Representatives from those two bodies frequented Paris where they found new actors and actresses for employment in Russia. French plays alternated with Russian and German works interspersed with musical parties and concerts. The theatre was the House of  French Culture. Here people perfected their French — «refined, high vogue, elevated to the utmost beauty and elegance» — and became acquainted with the history, literature and art of France. Parisian gossip and jokes abounded.

In 1833, a small group of German artists was invited to perform operas and singspiels. The success was staggering. In 1843 however Italian singers arrived in  St Petersburg, they «outsang» the Germans, most of whom then moved to  Moscow, the rest switching to drama.

In 1859, a new epoch began with the complete refurbishing of the interiors by  Albert Cavos. The purpose was to increase the seating capacity of the theatre. The reopening on 26 November 1859 was described by Théophile Gautier, the  renowned French novelist, who had come to Russia seeking new impressions. He  liked everything, the auditorium, the troupe and felt proud of the fact that «a  theatre where the performance is entirely in French can be filled to capacity». The German troupe competed though.

Beginning in the 1870s, the Mikhailovsky Theatre opened its doors to anyone wishing to perform on its stage — out-of-house performances by other St Petersburg theatres, touring companies and various celebrations and charity shows. In 1894, several performances of the Mariinsky Theatre were transferred to the Mikhailovsky Theatre. Some jokers began referring to the latter as the «Russo-French Theatre of Opera-Ballet». This was the period when Mathilde Kschessinska was dancing, and Fyodor Chaliapin and Medea and Nicholas Figner sang on this stage.

On 6 March 1918, a performance of Il barbiere di Siviglia, based on  Gioacchino Rossini’s comic opera, was given in the premises of the former Mikhailovsky Theatre, which had been abandoned by the French company and its pre-revolutionary public. This event marks the starting point of the modern period of the theatre’s history. Transferred from the Mariinsky stage, the performance of the opera signified the birth of yet another opera house in the city. The first fifteen years in the history of the theatre, from 1918 to the 1932-33 season, was the period of its establishment and quest for its own creative «face». Over these years, a company of opera soloists, soon to include a  ballet troupe, was formed. The development of an individual program aimed at  creating a «laboratory of Soviet opera» thus coincided with the administrative changes and the acquisition of independent status.

The concentration on entertaining and comic material was reflected in a new title that was gained by the theatre in 1920: The State Academic Theatre of Comic Opera. In 1921 the theatre got the name of the Maly Petrograd State Academic Theatre, in 1926 the Leningrad State Academic Maly Opera Theatre (MALEGOT for short). In the winter 1930-31, Fyodor Lopukhov was appointed director of the Maly Ballet. The official birthday of the Maly Ballet was June, 13 1933, when the company premiered Fyodor Lopukhov’s production of  Riccardo Drigo’s ballet Harlequinade. This first performance also introduced the  public to the unique talent of Nikolay Zubkovsky. 1934 saw the premiere of the famous ballet The Bright Stream choreographed by Fyodor Lopukhov to the music by Dmitry Shostakovich. Leonid Lavrovsky was Artistic Director from 1935 to 1938, Vladimir Ponomaryov headed the Maly Ballet until 1941.

Ballets by Leonid Jacobson and Pyotr Gusev, Yury Grigorovich and Boris Eifman, Nikita Dolgushin and Konstantin Boyarsky were staged in the Maly Theatre. In 1963, the theatre received the official status of not only an opera but also a ballet theatre — the Leningrad State Order of Lenin Academic Maly Opera and Ballet Theatre. In 1989, the Maly was again renamed, this time, after the famous Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky.

In 2001, the pre-revolutionary name of the theatre emerged again. In 2007, the original name — Mikhailovsky Theatre — came to the foreground and was added to the one existing since 1991: The St Petersburg Mussorgsky State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre — Mikhailovsky Theatre.



1.1.    This User Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the Agreement) defines the procedure for accessing the website of the St. Petersburg State Funded Cultural Institution, the St. Petersburg Mussorgsky State Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre Mikhailovsky Theatre (hereinafter referred to as the Mikhailovsky Theatre) located at the domain

1.2. This Agreement regulates the relationship between the Mikhailovsky Theatre and the users of this website.


2.1. For the purposes of this Agreement, the terms indicated below shall have the following meaning:

2.1.2. Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators those employees authorized to manage the website, acting on behalf of the Mikhailovsky Theatre.

2.1.3. User of the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site (hereinafter the User) a person having access to and using the website via the Internet.

2.1.4. Site the Mikhailovsky Theatre website located at the domain

2.1.5. Content of the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site the protected results of intellectual activity, including extracts from audiovisual productions, their names, forewords, annotations, articles, illustrations and covers, with or without text, graphic, textual, photographic, derived, composite, and other works, user interfaces, visual interfaces, logos, and also the design, structure, selection, coordination, external appearance, general style, and placement of the Content making up the Site and other intellectual property whether together and/or separately contained in the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site and the Personal Area, from where it is then possible to purchase Mikhailovsky Theatre tickets.


3.1. The subject of this Agreement is the provision to the User of access to the services available on the Site.

3.1.1. The Mikhailovsky Theatre Site shall provide the following services to the User:

- access to information about the Mikhailovsky Theatre and information about how to purchase tickets

- purchase of electronic tickets

- discounts, promotions, concessions, and special offers

- receipt of information about Theatre news and events, including via news and information distribution services (email, phone, text message)

- access to electronic content, with the right to view such content

- access to search and navigation tools

- the opportunity to post messages and comments

- other services provided through the pages of the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site

3.2. This Agreement covers all services existing (or functioning) at the present time on the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site, and any subsequent modifications to them and additional services which may appear in the future.

3.2. Access to the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site shall be provided free of charge.

3.3. This Agreement is a public offer. In obtaining access to the Site, the User shall be deemed to have opted in to this Agreement.

3.4. Use of the materials and services on the Site shall be governed by the provisions of current Russian Federation legislation.


4.1. The Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators shall have the right:

4.1.1. To change the rules for use of the Site and to change the Content of the Site. Changes to usage rules shall enter into force from the moment the new version of the Agreement is published on the Site.

4.2. The User shall have the right:

4.2.1. User registration on the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site shall be for the purpose of identifying the User in order to provide Site services, distribute information and news (by email, post, telephone, text message, or other means), and to obtain feedback and a record of the provision of concessions, discounts, special offers, and promotions.

4.2.2. To use all of the services available on the Site.

4.2.3. To ask any questions relating to the information presented on the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site.

4.2.4. To use the Site solely for the purposes and in the manner provided for by this Agreement and not prohibited by Russian Federation legislation.

4.3. The User shall:

4.3.2. Take no action which may be considered to be in breach of the normal functioning of the Site.

4.3.3. Avoid any actions which may result in a breach of confidentiality with regard to information protected by Russian Federation legislation.

4.4. The User may not:

4.4.1. Use any device, program, procedure, algorithm or method, automated devices, or similar manual processes in order to access, acquire, copy, or track the Content of the Site.

4.4.3. Circumvent in any way the navigational structure of the Site in order to obtain or attempt to obtain any information, documents, or material by any means which are expressly not provided by the Site services;

4.4.4. Breach the security or authentication systems of the Site or any network associated with the Site. Carry out reverse searches, track, or attempt to track any information about any other User of the Site.


5.1. The Site and the Content contained therein belong to and are managed by the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators.

5.2. The Content of the Site may not be published, reproduced, transferred, or distributed by any means, nor posted on the worldwide networks of the Internet without the written consent of the Site Administrators.

5.5. The User shall be personally responsible for the confidentiality of the information in his/her account, including his/her password, and for all activity, without exception, which is carried out on behalf of the User of the account.

5.6. The User must immediately notify the Site Administrators of any unauthorized use of his/her account or password, or of any other breach of the security system.


6.1. Losses which the User may suffer in the event of a deliberate or negligent breach of any provision of this Agreement, or as a consequence of unauthorized access to the communications of any other User, shall not be reimbursed by the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators.

6.2. The Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators shall not be liable for:

6.2.1. Delays or malfunctions in the process of carrying out operations arising as a result of force majeure circumstances, nor for any faults in the telecommunications, computer, electronic, or other related systems.

6.2.2. The actions of banking, transfer, and payment systems, nor for delays connected with their operation.

6.2.3. Improper functioning of the Site in cases where the User does not have the technical equipment required for its use, nor do the Administrators accept any obligation to provide Users with such equipment.


7.1. The Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators shall have the right to terminate and/or block access to the Site, without prior notice to the User, if the User has breached this Agreement or the terms of use of the Site contained in other documents, or in the event of the Site ceasing to function, or due to technical glitches or problems.

7.2. The Site Administrators shall not be liable to the User or third parties for termination of access to the Site in the event of a breach by the User of any of the provisions of this Agreement or any other document containing the terms of use of this Site.

7.3. The Site Administrators shall have the right to disclose any information about the User as may be necessary for the execution of the provisions of current legislation or judicial rulings.


8.1. In the event of any disagreements or disputes arising between the Parties to this Agreement, a mandatory condition before resorting to the courts is that a claim should be submitted (a written proposal for voluntary resolution of the dispute).

8.2. The recipient of the claim shall, within 30 calendar days of receipt, notify the claimant in writing of the results of consideration of the claim.

8.3. If it is not possible to settle the dispute by voluntary means, either Party may apply to the courts for protection of their rights as provided for under current Russian Federation legislation.


9.1. In opting in to this Agreement and leaving his/her information on the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site by completing the registration form, the User:

9.1.1. Consents to the processing of the following personal information: full name; date of birth; telephone number; email address; payment details (if the service is used to purchase electronic tickets to the Mikhailovsky Theatre);

9.1.2. Confirms that this personal information belongs to him/her personally;

9.1.3. Gives the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators the right to carry out, without limit in time, the following actions (operations) with his/her personal information:

- collection and accumulation

- storage for an unlimited period of time (indefinitely) from the moment that the information is provided until it is recalled by the User by means of an application to the Site Administrators

- clarification (renewal, modification)

- destruction

9.2. The User's personal information shall be processed in accordance with Article 6.1.5 of Federal Law No. 152-FZ dated 27.07.2006 On Personal Information, solely for the purposes of performing the obligations accepted by the Mikhailovsky Theatre Site Administrators under this Agreement with respect to the User, including those indicated in clause 3.1.1 of this Agreement.

9.3. The User accepts and confirms that all of the provisions of this Agreement and the terms of processing his/her personal information are understood by him/her, and expresses his/her consent with the terms of processing his/her personal information without reservation or limitation. The Users consent to the processing of his/her personal information is specific, informed, and conscious.