Ballet allégorique in one act
Music by Alexander Glazunov
20th February [O.S. 7th February] 1900
Hermitage Theatre, Saint Petersburg
Original 1900 Cast
The Spirit of the Corn
Frost, Ice, Hail and Snow press tightly around harsh Winter. Frost weaves its lace, Ice drifts and Hail patters. Two grey-haired gnomes emerge from the forest. They set fire to the brushwood and drive off Winter with its hot flames. The first breaths of Spring merge with Zephyr’s warm wind. The birds and flowers lovingly surround Spring. Summer approaches. The Sun heats the earth with its bright rays. Curly-headed cornflowers and scarlet poppies circle in a waltz, as if embracing the ripe ears of rye. The sounds of a reed pipe are heard. Satyrs and fauns come running. They begin to struggle with each other as they try to carry off the Spirit of the Corn, but Zephyr comes to the rescue and the Spirit is saved. Autumn arrives and with it the grape harvest. Satyrs and bacchantes perform elaborate dances, drawing in everyone around.