"The time for a radical reconstruction has come," architect Nikita Shangin told the paper. "From a technical point of view, the state of the theater is deplorable; it's practically wrecked."
Before reopening in 2008, the 1825 building will get new stage machinery, cloakrooms, and escalators. Meanwhile, the original acoustics in the main auditorium, which were badly damaged by a renovation in the 1950s, will be restored.
"After all the partial repairs over the years the theater is a kind of layered cake," Shangin said, "Even the basements have different depths.
During construction, the Bolshoi's opera and ballet companies will perform in a new, second theater or at other venues.