(Theo Merz’s article appeared on AFP, 12/8; via Pam Green.)

A Bolshoi Theatre ballet based on the life of Russian dance legend Rudolf Nureyev that was abruptly pulled in the summer will premiere Saturday, despite its director remaining under house arrest.

In a move unprecedented in the theatre’s modern history, the Bolshoi in July cancelled the world premiere of “Nureyev” just three days before opening night, after director Kirill Serebrennikov was questioned in a high-profile criminal inquiry.

Management cited an under-rehearsed cast but many suspected it had been pulled because of the investigation or the ballet’s treatment of Nureyev’s homosexuality.

Serebrennikov was placed under house arrest in August in a fraud case that has shocked the Russian arts community.

In September, the Bolshoi announced a premiere was scheduled for the end of the year.

“Sadly our request to the investigative committee that Kirill Serebrennikov be allowed to take part in rehearsals was not answered,” the Bolshoi’s general director Vladimir Urin said at a news conference ahead of a final run-through on Friday.

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