The Journey to Christmas festival with its numerous venues on Tverskaya and nearby streets is an opportunity to sit on the Nutcracker’s throne, peep into a magician’s office, visit the city of Kai and Gerda and even meet a unicorn. From 31 December to 2 January, the streets are off-limits to traffic but home to theatre and artistic performances, ballets and operas. These will be set against a background of fairy tale figures and sculptures representing cities and palaces from famous tales and legends. Tverskaya Street will feature about 50 unique art installations.
“The Ordinary Miracle venue between 31 and 27, Tverskaya Street, will have polygonal models of a unicorn, a bear and a wolf, each figure made up of dozens of polygon shaped elements. Full of things from Yevgeny Shwarts’ famous novel – including sun and sand clocks, a cupboard of worlds and a balloon – the venue will feature the magician’s office where he carried out his experiments,” the festival’s press service said.
The venue between 25 and 21, Tverskaya Street, will stand out with a carved throne and the Rats Against the Nutcracker installation. Ernst Hoffman’s heroes will stand next to a 7-metre natural fir-tree adorned with designer toys.
The section between 19 Tverskaya Street to Tverskaya Square will boast 3-metre columns with fish, a treasure chest and a wooden boat with paddles, and an illuminated veil, all evoking Sadko, a Russian folk hero.
The Snow Queen’s domain will emerge between buildings 13 and 9. A city, which was once home to Hans Christian Andersen’s Kai and Gerda, will open its gates to visitors who can take a selfie in the Snow Queen’s sled or climb the cubed walls of her castle, some of which are nearly 8-metre high.
A 2.5-metre wave that brings forth warriors from Pushkin’s Tale of the Tsar Saltan can be seen on Mokhovaya Street. The Ruslan and Lyudmila venue at the beginning of Tverskaya Street will feature a cube with suspended golden cages that recall the Chernomor’s castle where Alexander Pushkin’s Lyudmila was held captive.
A total of 10 theatre venues will open on Tverskaya and nearby streets. They will stay open from noon on the last day of the year to 3 am the next morning. On 1 January, the venues will welcome guests between noon and 10 pm, and they will greet them between 11 am and 10 pm on 2 January. Visitors will be able to move from stage to stage in any order or direction.
The Journey to Christmas festival kicked off in Moscow on 22 December and will run through 14 January. There will be daily performances, concerts and workshops on Moscow streets, boulevards and squares. The chief venues are Tverskaya Street and Red Square, Manezhnaya Square, Tverskaya Square, Revolution Square, Rozhdestvenka, Novy Arbat and Arbat streets, Kamergersky Pereulok, Tverskoi and Gogolevsky boulevards, Klimentovsky Pereulok and Novopushkinsky Square. The renovated Garden Ring will for the first time welcome its own festival programme.