Italy: In Verona, Romeo proposes to Juliet on stage in real-life romance

Rome: The audience at the ‘Roberto Bolle and Friends’ show in Verona Arena on Wednesday night was thrilled after two lead dancers got engaged on stage.

The primo ballerino of La Scala opera house, Timofej Andrijashenko, had just finished dancing the duet of Romeo and Juliet with the prima ballerina Nicoletta Manni, his life partner of the last seven years.

To the delight of the audience, Timofej suddenly got down on one knee and asked a stunned Nicoletta to marry him. She said yes.

Roberto Bolle, the star of the show, had suggested the unique setting for the proposal when Timofej confided in him about his marriage plans a few months ago.

With Roberto’s help, Timofej then began to stage-manage the proposal, with everyone in on the act except Nicoletta, reports news agency ANSA.

The ring was hidden on stage by Nicoletta’s brother, who was one of the technicians in the production, until the end of the show.

Nicoletta told ANSA that she knew nothing about the plan and did not understand at first what was going on.

“Yesterday was already a special evening for me because we were dancing the duet of Romeo and Juliet in Verona, at the Arena” – she said – “That was already something unique. Then I discovered that I was the only one who did not know.”

Among the cheering crowd were the parents of both dancers, who Timofej had flown in specially for the occasion.

After waiting until the final applause and for all the other dancers to be in place, Timofej made his move.

“Time had slowed down” – he told ANSA – “It seemed to me that it would never end, until I saw Nicoletta’s eyes looking at me.”