Pyotr Tchaikovsky

Lyrical scenes in three acts (seven scenes)
Libretto: Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Konstantin Shilovsky after Alexander Pushkin
World premiere: 29 March 1879, Maly Theatre, Moscow
Polish premiere: 4 May 1899, Teatr Wielki, Warsaw
Premiere of this production: 5 April 2002, Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera
In the original Russian with Polish surtitles

  • Whoever you are, whatever you have lost, you’ll never get rid of your shadow, of your emptiness – that’s what Pushkin’s hero seems to be telling us in Treliński’s penetrating staging. The silent spectre follows his every step. Like a disappointed angel, a repressed aspect of consciousness or a second observing his life’s mistakes. He toys with the hero. He magnetises the viewer. He craves contrasts. There are many polar extremes here, intensifying the emotions on the principle of complimentary opposition. Hollow spaces are pierced by sharp light, and corpse faces march to the beat of a vigorous polonaise. Disturbing, powerful, memorable. With the nostalgically recurring musical theme, arresting the flow of life, clash the red apples, vibrant like symbols of temptation. The disenchanted Onegin is a type of a hero often present in Treliński’s shows, reflecting someone on the margins of reality. He’s a superfluous man who has lost the momentum of life, his sense of astonishment, wonder, meaning. Perhaps he started out with a whole bundle of dreams, but he ends up with emptiness. The poignant theme of desolation in this staging, enhanced by the wonderful set by Boris Kudlička, accompanies one after the show like that silent spectre. Unforgettable.

  • Credits
    Keri-Lynn Wilson
    Mariusz Treliński
    Set Designer
    Boris Kudlička
    Emil Wesołowski
    Costume Designer
    Joanna Klimas
    Lighting Designer
    Felice Ross