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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » October 28, 2009
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Boris Godunov at National Opera
October 28, 2009   
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Boris Godunov, by Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881), will be premiering at the National Opera in Warsaw Oct. 30, directed by Polish operatic director Mariusz Treliński. The opera is based on a play by Alexander Pushkin.

The libretto tells the story of Boris Godunov, an advisor to Tsar Ivan IV "The Terrible," who was elected Tsar of Russia in 1598 when Feodor I died without an heir. Godunov's death in 1605 death unleashed the Time of Troubles, a period of anarchy, unrest and power struggles which dragged on until 1613.

Mussorgsky wrote two versions of this, his only completed opera, between 1868 and 1874. The original version of 1869 was not approved for production as it lacked a prima donna role. The opera was given its world premiere at the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1874.

Treliński has opted for the original version of the score, without any later embellishments, in order to bring out the dramatic quality of the story. His Boris Godunov is a story of the machinations of power, with behind-the-scenes struggles, rabble rousing, and popular heroes created and then destroyed by the media.

Canadian Keri-Lynn Wilson is the conductor. The opera is being performed in the original Russian with Polish subtitles.

Teatr Wielki-National Opera, 1 Teatralny Sq., Warsaw
Performances: Oct. 30 (premiere) and 31
Tickets can be purchased online at www.teatrwielki.pl
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