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Culture news, 07.03.2014 21:38

Tour by the Astana Opera at the Mariinsky

Tour by the Astana Opera at the Mariinsky

On 8, 9 and 10 March the Astana State Opera and Ballet Theatre of Kazakhstan will be on tour in Russia for the first time, performing at both the historic Mariinsky Theatre and the Mariinsky II.
The Astana Opera was founded in 2013 on the initiative of President Nursultan Nazarbayev of the Republic of Kazakhstan. On 21 June 2013 the theatre opened its first season of national opera amid great pomp with a performance of Soviet-era Kazakh composer Mukan Tulebayev’s Birzhan and Sara. On 21 October 2013 Valery Gergiev conducted the outstanding Italian stage director Pier Luigi Pizzi’s production of Giuseppe Verdi’s opera Attila there.
The Astana Opera currently hosts performances of the great classical operas and ballets as well as productions by contemporary composers. The theatre’s first season has seen premieres of the ballets The Sleeping Beauty by Pyotr Tchaikovsky (staging by Yuri Grigorovich) and Romeo and Juliet by Sergei Prokofiev (staging by French choreographer Charles Jude) as well as Russian choreographer Boris Eifman’s ballet Rodin.
The near future will see co-productions with such European theatres as the Opera di Roma, the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples and the Teatro alla Scala in Milan.
The tour to the Mariinsky Theatre will be the theatre’s first tour abroad. Director of the Astana Opera Tolegen Mukhamedjanov has commented that tours are very important for the young company. “On the one hand they give us the possibility to stage major productions by our theatre, presenting the operas and ballets of Kazakhstan. On the other hand, they represent a huge broadening of our artistic horizons, as by appearing at other theatres our performers gain new experiences and artistic skills.”

8 March
Mariinsky II, 17:00
Giuseppe Verdi’s Atilla
Stage Director and Production and Costume Designer: Pier Luigi Pizzi (Italy). The lead roles will be performed by: Orlin Anastassov as Attila (Bulgaria), Claudio Sgura as Ezio (Italy), Zhupar Gabdullina as Odabella (Kazakhstan), Luciano Ganci as Foresto (Italy), Jean Tapin as Uldino (Kazakhstan) and Yeskendir Abzhanov as Leone (Kazakhstan).
Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet Company of the Astana Opera. Conductor: Valery Gergiev.

9 March
Mariinsky Theatre, 19:00
Ballet Gala
Ballet miniatures and ballet highlights from the theatre’s repertoire performed by lead soloists and dancers of the Astana Opera Ballet Company.

10 March
Mariinsky II, 19:30
Mukan Tulebayev’s opera Birzhan and Sara with revised music by Abzal Mukhitdinov.
The opera Birzhan and Sara is an acclaimed masterpiece of the Kazakh national school of composition. Its libretto was written by the renowned Kazakh poet, writer and academic Kazhym Zhumaliev. The composer Mukan Tulebayev, with his profound melodic gift, brought to life the national flavour of his characters. The composer dedicated his opera to Birzhan Kozhagulov – a Kazakh improvising poet, folk singer, composer and one of the most influential figures in Kazakh poetic song art in the latter half of the 19th century.
“The particular expressiveness and beauty of the music, the incredible knowledge of the canons and specific nature of theatre and the vividly expressed national flavour that comprise the stronger side of composer Mukan Tulebayev ensured the success of this work, one that has exceeded national importance and gone beyond the confines of national culture, one that may be regarded and judged within the context of world opera.” The opera Birzhan and Sara has been performed to great acclaim not just at theatres in Kazakhstan but abroad as well, including in Russia, Uzbekistan and Germany.
Stage Director: Yuri Alexandrov; Production Designer: Vyacheslav Okunev. The lead roles will be performed by: Akhmed Agadi as Birzhan, Nurzhamal Usenbaeva as Sara, Zhanat Shybykbaev as Zhanbota, Zhannat Baktai as Altynai, Dina Khamzina as Analyk, Talgat Galeyev as Zhienkul, Yeskender Abzhanov as Kozhagul, Zhan Tapin as Serik, Beimbet Tanarykov as Yestai and Zhandos Bekbualiev, Azamat Bektemisov, Omirzhan Kadyrov and Konstantin Strigin as Mullahs. Conductor: Abzal Mukhitdinov

News source: The State Academic Mariinsky Theatre

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