Musical scores for ambitious conductor
Belarusian Bolshoi Theatre prepares new version of Eugene Onegin
Five versions of Eugene Onegin have so far graced the Belarusian stage, having been first performed in 1933. The classical work of Russian literature has since seen various interpretations: musically and in its staging. The last performance was created in 1986, involving leading masters of the Belarusian stage.
According to People’s Artist of Belarus Alexander Anisimov, a laureate of the State Award of Belarus, who is conducting and directing the new staging, he has worked with Eugene Onegin’s musical score often before, each time with excitement and great joy. He recalls each performance fondly.
“I was lucky enough to work at the Mariinsky Theatre on director Yuri Temirkanov’s Eugene Onegin, and on Boris Pokrovsky’s staging, at the Russian Bolshoi Theatre. This was a fantastic performance, created by the great director in the 1940s. Later, I staged it with Willy Decker, at the Bastille Opera; it was an interesting and successful performance. Then, I created a staging at the Barcelona Liceo Theatre, with director Peter Konwitschny. We also took the opera to Tokyo, where all the roles were sung by the Japanese in perfect Russian,” he notes. Clearly, this rich experience has prepared him well for returning the opera to the Belarusian Bolshoi Theatre. “As a musician, I’m an ambitious person. I’m truly convinced that the greatest ambitions lie in musical scores. If we can bring these to life, we honour all those involved,” he emphasises.