MOSCOW The American Ballet Theatre (ABT) has returned to Moscow for the first time since the 1960s and the first time since the defection of Mikhail Baryshnikov, who left Russia’s famed Bolshoi Theatre to bring his luminous star power to the U.S.
ballet company. ABT opened a three-night run Tuesday on the new stage of the Bolshoi Theatre, whose company was touring Canada when Baryshnikov defected from the Soviet Union in 1974.
Artistic director Kevin McKenzie said the dancers certainly are feeling the pressure of performing in a country with such a rich ballet tradition.
What the U.S. company brings to Russian audiences is versatility and an ease with changing styles, McKenzie said.
The ABT program includes “Fancy Free,” a Broadway musical-like ballet choreographed by Jerome Robbins to mus…