The 'Russian Ball. St. Petersburg in Moscow' project, which is dedicated to St. Petersburg's 300th anniversary, has been in preparation all year by Andris Liepa and other artists and musicians. According to Liepa, guests who come to Moscow's Gostiny Dvor (Merchants' Yard) on New Year's Eve will find themselves at a St. Petersburg ball from the first half of Nikolai II's reign. The guests will be greeted by cavalry guards from the time of Catherine the Great and invited into the Imperial Hall, where they will be met by cascading fountains, fantastic floating lights, and performances by Russian and foreign stars. The set will allow Muscovites to see various symbols of St. Petersburg. According to Andris Liepa, the project is supported by the Bolshoi Theatre and Mosfilm, who are hiring out costumes to guests for the evening.
Liepa said that 'the majority of the proceeds from the evening will go towards the construction of the Trinity Cathedral on Kashirskoe Shosse in Moscow.' Tickets will cost from USD 500 to USD 2000. The St. Petersburg set will later become part of an exhibition devoted to the city's anniversary, opening on January 22, 2003.