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Герой нашего времени
A Hero of Our Time
Cast: Igor Tsvirko, Artem Ovcharenko, Ruslan Skvortsov, Olga Smirnova, Alexander Vodopetov, Ekaterina Shipulina, Vyacheslav Lopatin, Georgiy Gusev, Svetlana Zakharova, Kristina Kretova, Denis Savin
Language: English, French
Translation: no subtitles, russian subtitles
Time: 2 hours 32 minutes
Choreographer: Yuri Possokhov
Director, Designer and Author of Libretto: Kirill Serebrennikov
Costume Designers: Elena Zaitseva, Kirill Serebrennikov
Music Durector: Anton Grishanin
Lighting Designer & Video: Simon Donger
The new ballet score, based on motifs from the Lermontov novel A Hero of Our Time, was commissioned from the very young (32-year-old) Petersburg composer Ilya Demutsky who, though not averse to experiments, keeps to a fairly traditional musical language. However his acute interest in contemporary topics which finds reflection in his music, and his outlook immediately indicated that the ballet version of Lermontov’s Pechorin would in no way be a younger brother to the ‘Byronic’ Conrad in Le Corsaire.
It was the Bolshoi’s artistic director of ballet, Sergei Filin, who suggested choreographer Possokhov and director Serebrennikov should work together on a new ballet. “Have a think about subject matter”, he said to Kirill Serebrennikov. “A Hero of Our Time”, the latter answered straight off.
A Hero of Our Time is one of Serebrennikov’s favorite books. But however much one might love a book, not everyone is capable of bringing it alive in ballet. “I find it surprising no one thought of doing it before”, says Serebrennikov, “it is a quintessentially poetical and inwardly musical work. And where there is poetry there is ballet.”
Three of the five novellas which make up the novel, have been chosen for the ballet — Bela, Taman, Princess Mary. And in each one of these three parts in the ballet, Pechorin is quite different. He is changed by circumstance, age, the way in which he is presented — in Bela he is seen through the eyes of another character, while in Taman and Princess Mary, he “speaks” for himself, via the chapters of his diary. In all these different guises, there can be no question of Pechorin being an integrated character. " If I tell you about someone, you will have an image of this man in your mind, but if I read this man’s diary, I will get an impression of a quite different person, and in real life there will be a third person" (Serebrennikov). Each Pechorin has his own character, as revealed in his opening monologue, his own musical characterization, as conveyed to the audience by a particular musical instrument, positioned directly on stage.
The Theatre dedicated the production to the 200th anniversary of the birth of Mikhail Lermontov, the great Russian poet, which was celebrated at the end of 2014.