THE KOSOVO BALLET Muhammad Fadli


The story of Kosovo Ballet is portrait of a struggle. Formed within the National Theater of Kosovo in 1972 by Ahmet Brahimaj, a young Kosovar who had studied ballet in Skopje, the troupe made a great contribution toward the establishment of art scene in Kosovo. As one of the youngest ballet troupe in the Balkans, they performed well in many stages in the former Yugoslavia and some major international festival. But, after many years of hard-labour, the conflict in the region at the end of 80s affected the ballet activities. The Serbian authority, who was worried of the voice brought by the ballet, put them under police surveillance. And yet the worst was just about to begin: in 1991, the dancers of the Kosovo Ballet were banned by force from the theater. For once, all the ballet activities was ceased.

In 2001, public saw the revival of the ballet troupe for the first time. After many years of silence, the first generation of the Kosovo Ballet returned to the stage. By then, they were accompanied by the young dancer of the school which just established earlier. In 2005, the first class of the ballet high school also graduated and continue forming the core of the troupe onto these days.

However life was never easy in the newborn Republic of Kosovo where living cost is high and unemployment is widespread. The members of the troupe, which mostly work full-time for the ballet, gain only around 250-350 euro per month, barely enough to live. The ballet itself also dreams for a new venue and proper training facilities. But with the improving situation in the country, the members are optimistic. For them, the future is never looked brighter like today.

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