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Culture news, 23.07.2008 07:46

Szymanowski’s opera in St Petersburg

Karol Szymanowski’s opera King Roger - premiered at the Mariinsky Opera (formerly the Kirov) in St Petersburg last week – has won very fine reviews.

The Rzeczpospolita daily wrote that the production by Poland’s Mariusz Trelinski has debunked the view that the work is static and therefore theatrically boring. According to Gazeta Wyborcza, the production is a model example how to promote Polish music abroad.

This is not going to be achieved by means of single concerts or festivals but only thanks to a joint effort by various institutions: in this case the Wroclaw Opera company (with which Trelinski produced his first version of King Roger last March), the Mariinsky Opera and the Edinburgh Festival during which the opera will be presented in August.

The production’s Music Director Valery Gergev told Rzeczpospolita that there will be five more performances of King Roger at the Mariinsky Opera in the 2009/2010 season. It is the first opera ever produced in St Petersburg in the Polish language.

The main roles are sung by Polish soloists: Andrzej Dobber (Roger) and Elzbieta Szmytka (Roxana). The Ukrainian tenor Pavlo Tolstoy appears as the Shepherd.

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