The name of Tukay means a whole epoch in the intellectual development of the Tatar people, its literature, art and the whole culture making....

“Shurale” Ballet


The “Shurale” ballet is a first national ballet that is the main pride of the Tatar musical theatre nowadays. The ballet was written in 1940 by a 26-year-old talented Tatar composer Farid Yarullin. The same name tale of Gabdulla Tukay, a great Tatar poet, became a base for the ballet plot enriched by the Tatar folklore motifs and images. Real and fabulous characters exist in the ballet as well as truth and fiction are interwoven with each other.


“Shurale” Ballet. Jalil Opera and Ballet Tatar State Academic Theatre (Kazan)

The central character of the ballet is a folklore personage Shurale, a forest evil spirit and fairy-tale monster. He is represented as a wild woods owner in the ballet. Shurale with his hooked nose in the middle of forehead and body covered by wool has an ugly appearance. The fingers with which he is able to tickle lost wayfarers to death are his main characteristic feature. However, Shurale is a quite harmless unhappy creature though his sinister look. As a result, the ballet music is full of ominous, sad tones.


Folklore personage Shurale

The qualities of whole-souled Tatar people are shown in the character of Byltyr, a noble, courageous and ready-witted peasant. A young winged girl Syuimbike impresses in the ballet. The great Russian ballet dancers Galina Ulanova and Maya Pliseckaya did Syuimbike.

Farid Yarullin has enriched the Tatar music with a very pioneering work of art. In 1945 the first night of the “Shurale” ballet took place in Kazan. Unfortunately, the composer itself was not able to see the performance because of the beginning of the Great Patriotic War where Farid Yarullin died a hero’s death in 1943.

“Shurale” became world-known with the end of the War. Bulgaria, Holland, Rumania, Poland, Germany, Egypt, Albania applauded it. Nowadays the “Shurale” ballet is honoured and loved by the house and is a part of the golden fund of the M.Jalil Opera and Ballet Tatar Academic State Theatre.

The museum of Farid Yarullin was founded in the motherland of the composer in Malaya Sun, Mamadysh district, Tatarstan.

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