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French in Vladivostok

Director Alain Maratra: "The actor on the stage should not be comfortable ..."

On February 10, the opening of the year of the great Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev took place in Primorye. The famous opera "The Love for Three Oranges" by Sergei Prokofiev has been timed to coincide with this event to the Primorsky Stage of the Mariinsky Theater. The famous French opera director Alain Maratra arrived in Vladivostok to stage it (to be held at the end of February), whose career as an actor, teacher and theater director covers more than a dozen countries on several continents.

French in Vladivostok
The Far Eastern public expects a surprise from Three Oranges in the version of Alain Maratra. The maestro himself is not yet inclined to reveal all the cards of the premiere, but he kindly agreed to give an interview to the "ER" correspondent, in which he told about his creative credo and shared his opinion on the place of the opera house in contemporary stage art.

- Opera, with its style of the 18th century, is often perceived as an archaic form of performing arts. In your opinion, is it possible to change this perception and expand the audience of the opera house through the efforts and talent of the director?

- You know, this is precisely the task that Valery Gergiev, the artistic director of the Mariinsky Theater, puts at the forefront - how to expand the circle of opera fans? The maestro is tirelessly looking for ways to interest young people, so that it is the young audience that, if not prevailing at the performances, then constitutes a significant part of the audience.

And I must say that Russia in this sense looks more optimistic than the same France. We have intellectuals who want to have a beautiful evening at our theater. In Russia, the circle of theater audiences is much more diverse in social terms. In Moscow, St. Petersburg, and in Vladivostok, too, apparently, the theater in general and the opera house in particular - people are keenly interested in noticeably different levels of income, and in terms of employment, and age ...

Opera is expensive today. It cannot be promoted to the masses without government support. But government officials often do not even try to go beyond the perception of opera as an elite art. And it should not be a cake, it should become your daily daily bread ...

And you are right about the fact that the opera of many ordinary people scares away in advance with its archaism and pretentiousness. Eighty musicians "buried" in the orchestra pit - greetings from 18-th century, when the yard has already begun 21-ho! But this can and should be fought. At one time, the canons of operatic art, but at the same time following its deep foundations, was destroyed by Mozart. The Beatles, Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, Andrew Webber and Tim Rice, who wrote the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar, did this with success in the 20th century.

Your humble servant tries, to the best of his modest strength, to also introduce his innovative techniques ...

- Which of them will be presented in the play "The Love for Three Oranges" on the Primorsky Stage of the Mariinsky Theater in Vladivostok?

- I don’t want to reveal all the cards yet. Come and see.

- Your biography says that in your productions you pay exceptional attention to the technique of the actors' bodies ...

- The body is the main component of any acting game. Amazing in its capabilities. Body language is real. And in opera, it is the music that sets the mood, the tone for the manifestation of feelings, which are expressed by the play of the body. In this sense, it is easier for an opera actor than for a drama theater actor. A musical message, a message initially charges with the necessary energy and gives a vector to movement in a certain direction, helps not to be distracted from the main thing.

In Sergei Prokofiev's opera-fairy tale "The Love for Three Oranges", the protagonist - a lazy and sick prince, doomed, nevertheless, to go through the crucible of various adventures - in principle, only body language can convey the contradiction between his psychological essence and those vicissitudes that he has prepared to him a fabulous fate.

- You have already had one rehearsal in Vladivostok with the actors of the Primorsky stage of the Mariinsky. How willing did you find them to accept your directorial demands?

- One rehearsal is not much. But she allowed me to see that among the local actors there are incredibly talented guys.

- If we compare today's theatrical youth with your generation, whose youth fell on 70-80 year 20-th century, in whose favor will the comparison be?

- You know, I have a feeling that we were more happy about life as such. Now among the young you can often find people prone to despondency - for one reason or another: they ate the wrong thing, the weather is bad, the housing is not comfortable ... But I am in no hurry to reproach some young people for grumbling - maybe they have objective reasons for this.

- Are you comfortable with the artists you see for the first time, for example?

- Do not consider it flirtatious, but I'm happy when I'm not comfortable. When there is some kind of psychological stress, doubts. And the actor on the stage should not be comfortable, otherwise the audience will be bored. Comfort is the death of theater. After all, the main thing on stage is to reproduce life. And she, by definition, is never comfortable for anyone. It's hard to live.

- Do you require the actors to get used to the played image or keep a distance from it?

- You know, Stanislavsky, who is considered to be the author of the theory of getting used to the image, once said: there is no technique, you just need to free the soul. I agree with this thesis.

- You staged the opera “The Love for Three Oranges” in Italy, France, USA, Russia (Moscow and St. Petersburg). Now you will be playing in Vladivostok. Do you take into account the peculiarities of the local audience when staging?

- A performance - just like a film - does not depend on the place of its presentation. Well, for example, if I were a film director who shot a film in color and brought it to Vladivostok, the very fact of moving to another place would not turn into black and white. The play is a picture designed to touch the deep strings of the human soul, which, I dare to assume, for all inhabitants of planet Earth are not very different from each other.

ER Help:

Alain Maratra - Graduate of the National Institute of Theater Arts (INSAS) in Brussels. As an opera director, he has staged more than a dozen world-renowned performances in different countries: Prokofiev's Love for Three Oranges, Chabrier's Star, Offenbach's Robbers, Passeport Musical pour Paris and others. Collaborates with theater venues in France, the International Theater Festival in Sao Paulo, Petr Fomenko Theater, dancers, actors and singers of the traditional Baltic theater. Alain Maratra is also known as a theater teacher. Since 1999 he has been teaching the art of improvisation at the Paris Conservatory. Under his direction, Sergei Prokofiev's opera The Love for Three Oranges (according to Maratra, “this is the story of a prince who once opens his eyes and sees that the world does not correspond to his idea of ​​him”) has been running since March 14, 2007. In Moscow, this production was presented on May 8, 2007 at the Musical Theater. K.S. Stanislavsky and Vl. I. Nemirovich-Danchenko, within the framework of the VI Moscow Easter Festival Valery Gergiev.

Seaside scene of the Mariinsky Theater Is one of the youngest theaters in Russia. It was built as part of the 2012 APEC summit. The original design of the theater made it one of the landmarks of Vladivostok. The building is made in the form of a "cube in a cube", during its construction the most advanced technologies were used. The theater has three venues: the Great Hall, the Small Hall and the Summer Ground. The great hall of the theater is made in the shape of a horseshoe; its capacity at maximum load is 1390 places. Natural materials - type-setting wooden panels made of Philippine pine and a cable-stayed ceiling created without the use of metal - became the basis of the unique acoustics of the Great Hall. The maximum occupancy of the Small Hall is 312 seats. The parterre of this hall can be transformed and turned into a single space with a stage.
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