Peterhof Parks, Fountains and Cascades were founded at the best hours of Russia, at a time when "barokko" reigned in Russian architecture and Peter the Great opened the Window to Europe, at a time, when new aesthetics of architectural ensembles belonging to Peter the Great was born and when the holiday-stroll was born together with new Russian traditions. Being our ancestors' authentic spiritual heritage, in our days these traditions are to be both carefully kept and developed. And for the principal director of Peterhof Holidays of Fountains it became the deed of his life and his destiny.
On July 12, 1995, after long restoration, the St. Petersburg first mayor, Anatoliy Sobchak opened and blessed the resurrected, alive and shining -- Grand Cascade - among music, ancient costumes, dances and wonderful voices of St. Petersburg artists. The director of such was Vladimir Vladimirovich Sokolov.
The Grand Cascade, all over the gold almost mystic scintillating of statues and melodic rhythm of running water accompanied by cool breeze from the gulf, may provide the rules of its own for the holidays. As for the performances, they are to combine the solemnity of "barokko", elegant style of Peter the Great's epoch with modern age tastes and inclinations. Truly classical repertoire can be heard at the time. One can see historical and classical ballet performances, the solos of musical theatres of St. Petersburg, Moscow and Russia.
With V. V. Sokolov each holiday has it own face and its own original scenario, where golden statues, water, orchestra and ballet dancers' technique has been uniquely combined. In the evenings, the fountains are given colored light and the stars of fireworks born and die. On the terrace of the Grand Cascade, starting in May and up to the month of October, all main Peterhof Holidays are held. What are they?
First of all, it is the Day of Fountains Start; then, special place occupies the holiday devoted to Catherine II' s favorite dog - Zemira. On that day, at the Grand Cascade the owners of "levretka" type of dogs arrive from St. Petersburg and near by, bringing with them their favorites, and there is a parade making place, first -- at the Grand Cascade, second - in the Palace.
The holiday of the Samson Fountain renaissance is a historical presentation on biblic Samson, Peter the Great, and the Fountain itself. This holiday takes place on the last Sunday of August, as a gift to school children before the new year.
Also bright is the Holiday of Russian Flag. This is the only holiday that has been devoted to the three-color in Russia in a sense of the country's main relic.
In the middle of September, there is always romantic and mysterious autumn ball of fountains; it is held at a time when autumn rains do not yet gain force but the park is already golden altogether with the statues of its cascade.
The fountains' season finishes at the beginning of October with the ceremony of Fountains' Close.
All in all, Peterhof Holidays of Fountains are numerous, unique, and V. V. Sokolov, being of creative nature, wants them to get more in number and flourish in their unrepeatable form, and also for them to keep best traditions of Peterhof place.