According to the creators of the performance, the play’s theme is such that it is set to change the opinions of those who view classic literature as dull and unfashionable. “This 19th century play is unique, enabling us to speak to modern audiences about today’s topics. At the same time, the actors can fully reveal their bright individuality via this classic, bringing their characters to life,” notes Mikhail Kovalchik, director-producer and Honoured Figure of Arts of the Russian Federation.
The main role is played by People’s Artiste of Belarus Alexander Tkachenok, who took on the role of Krechinsky with pleasure, usually playing elderly men. Such roles have prevailed in his career since he was a student. “I was trusted to play elderly characters from the first and it was difficult for me to refuse these traditional roles of old men. Over many years, I’ve mastered these characters, so it was a risk for me to take on something so different,” notes Mr. Tkachenok.
Mr. Tkachenok’s character is a 19th century gambler, addicted to his vice, which dominates his life. Gambling controls him. It is a theme which is just as relevant today, regardless of the costumes or set. We see the essence of human personality facing the most extreme situations.
This is not the first time that Mr. Tkachenok has worked with director Mikhail Kovalchik. Over twenty years ago, they worked at the Gorky Theatre to produce Faryatiev’s Fantasies. The current performance is the director’s present to Mr. Tkachenok on the occasion of his 60th birthday.
The score has been written by Pavel Yakubchenok, a graduate of the Belarusian State Academy of Music, who has long worked under the guidance of Mr. Kovalchik. “At first, I doubted whether the young composer would be able to cope with such a difficult topic. However, as soon as I heard his work, all my fears dispersed. Pavel feels the nuances of the phantasmagorical spirit of the play,” explains the director.
The set for Krechinsky’s Wedding, created by famous theatre set designer Veniamin Marshak, plays with metamorphoses and the line between realism and surrealism.