Laurencia is a ballet by Vakhtang Chabukiani, with a strong dramatic charge, based on Lope de Vega's play "Fuente Ovejuna," with music by Aleksandr Krein. Created at a time when "choreodrama" was considered the only acceptable form of contemporary ballet in pre-war Soviet Union, this ballet represents a return to true drama in which movement was a means of conveying meaning. The story of a peasant revolution in Spain was an ideal theme for the time Chabukiani created the ballet.
Vakhtang Chabukiani was one of the creators of a new choreographic language, a specific blend of folk and classical dance. He is considered one of the most influential ballet dancers of the 20th century. He is known for choreographing several of the most famous male variations in the classical ballet repertoire, such as in "Le Corsaire," "La Bayadère," and "Swan Lake." He is also known for his (together with Vladimir Ponomarev) revival of "La Bayadère" from 1941 for the Kirov Ballet, which is still in the company's repertoire and has served as the basis for many later productions in Russia and abroad. He strongly emphasized the importance of male dance, mainly promoting the idea of "heroic" dance. "Laurencia" premiered on March 22, 1939, at the Kirov Opera and Ballet Theatre (now the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg).
Nina Ananiashvili, who is bringing Chabukiani's choreography to the stage of the Split National Theatre in Croatia, is a Georgian ballerina and the artistic director of the Georgian National Ballet. The Daily Telegraph named her one of the twelve greatest ballerinas of all time, and the American magazine Dance Magazine named her the best ballerina in 2002. "Today she is an undisputed superstar of classical ballet," wrote Clive Barnes in the New York Post.