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The Bolshoi Theatre Opens with Scandalous Premiere
3.11.2011 11:02
The Bolshoi Theatre Opens with Scandalous Premiere

The Bolshoi Theatre has shown the first premiere since its historical reopening - an opera "Ruslan and Lyudmila".

      Ruslan and Lyudmila is the second opera by Mikhail Glinka, which was first staged in the Bolshoi Theatre on December 9, 1846. The play has gone through nine productions and about 700 performances. The opera is based on a fairy-tale plot written by poet Alexander Pushkin.

      The new production was made by a director Dmitry Chernyakov and the Bolshoi's invited conductor, Vladimir Yurovsky. Chernyakov, as a fervent opponent of all things routine, decided to narrate the well-know story in an unusual way, using some devices of modern-day theatres.

      “The production is certainly modern in its theme. We are trying to bring the characters closer to reality so the viewer can believe that they are real and not made up,” Chernyakov told the press. (citation from TorontoSun)

      Conductor Vladimir Yurovsky advised against bringing kids to the performance, as there are some frightening elements. 

      Large electronic screens will vie for the audience's attention with actors in full period costume, acrobats and jugglers. Naked women will dash across the stage and the cast will make sudden transitions into modern-day life. And a protagonist Lyudmila, played by Russian soprano Albina Shagimuratova from Houston’s Grand Opera, even receives a Thai massage from two young women while a brawny, tattooed admirer dances around her. 

      The opera has attracted a great attention by Russian cultural elite: many prominent directors, actors, producers and musicians have visited the premiere. "Ruslan and Lyudmila" was warmly received by the public and critics, though shouts "Bravo!" were mixing with shouts "Shame!" at the end of this unusual premiere.

      Ruslan and Lyudmila runs at the Bolshoi Theatre until November 11.


Sources: RIA Novosti TorontoSun Image: Kassiroff

Author: Julia Alieva

Tags: The Bolshoi Theatre Russian theatres Russian fairy-tales Russian events  

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