Boris Godunov

this expanded version expected in the Real Boris Godunov from Musorgski. But since the decision of its programming by the artistic direction, until its premiere this season, three years have elapsed, and in all this time, some issues have gone to more and others, inevitably, unless…

Boris Godunov is based on the eponymous historical drama Aleksands Pushkin and the book Nikolai Karamzín, History of the Russian Empire (1829). Mussorgsky tells us in this opera, not just the story of a character, but a story about Russia and the Russian people.

This time, and unlike the same theater production offered in 2007, They have had the good sense to offer the most complete version of 1872 including, Besides, the Scene St. Basil's Cathedral and of the Kromi forest. The result is a much rounder work.
The second version, that of 72, more political, It is based on three main reflections: oppression that can be exercised from power, whose referent is Boris, populism and propaganda, representing the false Dimitri, and the town.
The same people that the beginning of the work calls for the appointment of Boris as Tsar and the conclusion is asked to kill the same Zar. This is coupled with the psychological analysis version 1869, Boris featuring a haunted by their ghosts of the past. Ghosts appear represented by children in their delusions.

There are several aspects that draw attention to this work. The first shows the genius of its composer. Not easy to imagine that an official coming home, sick of working, is dedicated to the composition of such an important operatic work. And it is, Besides, reference and influence for composers like Debussy, Messiaen o Berg. And nobody like Mussorgsky set, after
Monteverdi, so well the relationship between music and the story told, creating a universe completely different sound to that of his contemporaries.

The scenic aspect is one of the first disappointments with which we. Budget shortage, poor excuse for a wardrobe, It does not justify itself a mammoth building of the former Soviet Union. Stage director Johan Simons He has created an open stage, Grey, cold and decadent. On it a gateway where the characters parading in power while the people observe or participate from a lower step unfolds.
The scenery is full of common elements in modern productions that are beginning to be a bit boring for excess use. Filming and simultaneous projection, the current dress or coldness and ugliness of the scene.
Simons transmits an oppressive atmosphere, the suffering of the Russian people and the tormented Boris.
Neither it was successful this time the dressing room with some of the main characters remain descontextualizados, something that in a work like this is unforgivable.

In the attempt to establish a clear parallel between Russia described by Mussorgsky, and the current, Simons has covered in balaclavas face of some members of the choir, making an allusion explicit to the Russian punk group Pussy Riot. Remember that some members of this group were recently convicted of issuing a video at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow, on charges of "undermining the social order”.
The message is clear, Then and now, explains Simons, “anonymous individuals, here by a balaclava as Pussy Riot, They may be condemned and destroyed, but the ideas remain in other. Theory that also serves the political sphere and religious”.

But let's talk about the characters, and let's start with the most important, the village, he Choir, accompanied by Little ones (big) Singers JORCAM. With a volume of sound and expressiveness so overwhelming that get really breathtaking scenes, as the Polish scene. The choir is one of the elements that this theater can be very proud, and this time they have been extraordinarily led by Haenchen.

The other protagonist of the opera, Boris, interpreted by Günther Groissböck, It is another disappointment of the night. Boris has a personality that makes her absences are almost more important than his appearances on stage, why he is blurred to the not respond to such excitement. It is a lustrous voice, but of little size and organization. Godunov debora a Groissböck.

Not so with Pimen, the voice of Dmitry Ulyanov. The old monk unctuous voice and extensive and severe severe, that they give the character the authority to reveal, through its chronicle of Russian history, Boris hatched the plot to assassinate the small Dimitri, son of his predecessor Ivan the Terrible and true heir.

Prince Shuisky, from Marguita, It has a sharp bright, a clear and well-tempered metal for an intriguing character in the Duma. Pity the poor direction of actors not ubicase you more properly on stage. The charcoal gray suit also gave him the deserved packaging.
Grigori, the false Dimitri, interpreted by Michael King, It was another disappointment. His sharp were in some unpleasant moment and their corpulence, inappropriate for the character, She hampered his movements among employees of the Real that circulated around the stage, to the astonishment of many, carrying tables and chairs.

Anatoli Koscherga He created a histrionic aptly Varlaam. julia Gertseva, Marina, brighter midtones that at some acute that failed to hit, but his voice is compact and smooth.
The duality of the "idiot", which it allows through innocence, I tell the truth without fear of being taken into account, and deep understanding of their observations. Often the idiot is the one who is right. You can not say the same for the people. It comes up a phrase of Stuart Mill, “society will be overwhelmed by the weight of collective mediocrity”.

Hartmut Haenchen, who last season led in this Theater a huge Lady Macbeth of Shostakovich, He has offered here a sober and efficient direction. You may be required a little more refinement in the nuances,but it sounded a resounding score that was probably very pleased to composer. Perhaps the coincidence of both in totalitarian experiences, Haenchen comes from East Germany, encourage greater attention to elements more frugal than pyrotechnic. His address the choir, there may be overtaken orchestra.

The enthusiasm of the public to the term of representation, It was rather content. Awaken those sleeping! Opera is very large, listening, s and, it feels, you enjoy and, at times like this, you think…

Boris Godunov
Modest Musorgski (1839-1881)
D. musical: Hartmut Haenchen
D. scene: Johan Simons
D. choir: Andrés Máspero
Headlines Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real
Small Singers JORCAM
Groissböck, Kadurina, Yarovaya, Margita, king, Gertseva,
Nikitin, Kotscherga, Vazquez, Popov, Nekrasova