Scene from Afrasiyab Badalbeyli’s “Giz galasi” ballet

Ernst Neizvestny

State Museum of Musical Culture of Azerbaijan

State Museum of Musical Culture of Azerbaijan
Baku , Azerbaijan

The first Azerbaijani ballet “Giz galasi” has been composed by Afrasiyab Badalbeyli in 1940.
The premiere took place on 18 April 1940 at the Azerbaijan State Academic Opera and Ballet Theater. Main roles at the premiere: Gulyanaq – Gamar Almaszade (later T.Aliyeva), Jahangir khan – A.S.Urvatsev, Polad – Constantin Batashev, Ayperi daye – M. Babayeva, mother of Gulyanaq – L. Tahmasib. In 1948, at the same theatre the work performed again with choregraphic edition of Gamar Almaszade; the next edition was in 1958. In 1958 the main roles were performed by: Gulyanaq – Leyla Vekilova (later Rafiga Akhundova, Tamilla Shiraliyeva), Jahangir khan – Constantin Batashev, Polad – Magsud Mammadov (later Yuri Kuznetsov, Vladimir Pletnyov).
On 24 October 1999 the new edition of the ballet was performed. The author of the new edition – Yuliana Alikishizade. The author of the new musical edition – Farhad Badalbeyli. The main roles were performed by: Gulyanaq – Madina Aliyeva, Polad – Gulagasi Mirzeyev. The collective of the State Dance Ensemble under the guidance of Afag Malikova took part in the performance.
The composer has created figurative structure with intonation in ballet which is characteristic for folklore works. The dance of the villagers and match-makers, beginning of the first act and Ayperi’s part are examples for it. Badalbeyli has employed original Azerbaijani methods in the ballet – “Ay beri bakh” lyric song (girls’ dance in the first act), “Terekeme”, “Kikijan” halays (villagers’ dance in the first act and the beginning of this act), rhythmical music of “Bayati-Shiraz Mugham” (Gulyanaq’s dance in the third act). Badalbeyli has also used uzbek (uzbek guests’ dance), Iran (Persian guests’s dance) songs. The composer has tried to realize detailed musical development with the help of folk themes. Thus, “Ay beri bakh” represents bright days in epilogue in the memory of the main character. Polad’s memories sound sad in jail scene with “Kikijan”.


  • Title: Scene from Afrasiyab Badalbeyli’s “Giz galasi” ballet
  • Creator: Unkown
  • Location: Baku
  • Medium: Print/ Paper

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