Mariinsky Theatre Presented "A Christmas Tale"

26 December, 2015 the new stage of Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg presented the new opera “A Christmas Tale” by Rodion Shchedrin. Mariinsky theatre could prove again that impossible is nothing and prepared in the shortest possible time a new first class premiere – a great present to the guests and citizens of St. Petersburg.

One day after the first night the newspaper “Veche St.Petersburg” said: “On the total, the music and the performance itself, the staging is so great and orotund, “tasty” and finally so full of Light and Kindness that it is not possible to miss the “Christmas tale” and bring children to the performance”.

The name itself “A Christmas Tale” and the story behind it that is loved by big and small about the 12 months attracted a lot of audience. During all performances the theatre was completely sold out.

The publication “Musical life” in the first edition of 2016 wrote: “…the composer gives the audience a possibility to savour the moment of happiness losing track of time”. The story behind the opera and the fairy tale plot that was used by the composer in the opera comes from the Czech writer Bozhena Nemtsova in the translation of Nikolai Leskov. Many will hear also modern and critical notices in the text of libretto.

Rodion Shchedrin told about the opera: “This opera – I called it “A Christmas Tale”. The basis of the opera shows the world of Russian folk tales. There is a lot of folk literature. Tchaikvosky called his “Nutcracker” – “ballet-féerie”, so in my case it will be the same, but not a ballet but “opear-féerie””.

One should note the brilliant work of Valery Gergiev – a big friend and admirer of the oeuvre of Rodin Shchedrin. His work with the text o fthe score was noted by the audience and critics. The newspaper “New Petersburg”: “The orchestra of the Mariinsky Theatre under the conduction of Maestro Valery Gergiev presents this wonderful music like a true feast for the ears”.

A distinguishing feature of this opera is a big number of soloists: 12 months, Great Queen, Great Chancellor, Royal Woodcutter, the Royal Centry, Zamarashka and of course the Stepmother and her Evil Daoughter. They all led the audience through the fairy-tale world created with the support of the director A. Stepanyuk, dress designer Irina Cherednikovoy and stage director A. Orlov. This work of Rodion Shchedrin that was written in a year and a half will tell us an enticing and graphic notation about the eternal values – Good and Evil.

“The final choir sings to us about the light and happiness and by way of explanation we hear a citation from the “Ode to the joy” from the final of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony… …in the score of the opera is a big tradition of Russian classic and the absolute understanding of the XX century language. A loved by many plot and the fairy-tale evocation is the best way to lead the audience of all ages to the real opera.” – wrote Anastasiya Logunova in St.Petersburg Music Reporter in February 2016.

On the 11th of March and 16th of April 2016 Mariinsky Theatre invites the big and small spectators to two further performances of the opera “Christmas Tale”.