Alert to the earthquake. The seismograph lyric panic at the approach of the 6 April, the day of the premiere of a new production of the Opera of Paris. He is called Lady Macbeth of the district Mtsensk (the original title) or Lady Macbeth of Mzensk (the one used to display it) or Lady Macbeth simply, the rendezvous has everything to transform themselves into event. This will be the conjunction of a composition of a rare power, a beautiful soprano that Paris has never heard of the work of one of the directors. Three reasons to go to the Opera-Bastille, thus: Lady Macbeth of Mzensk, is a masterpiece of Dmitri Shostakovich, Ausriné Stundyté, soprano Lithuanian who steals from a success to another, and Krzystof Warlikowski, clever dézingueur of the conventions of the operatic stage.

SERVICE: Book your tickets for the Lady Macbeth of Mzensk , at the Opéra-Bastille, Ticketac

” Lady Macbeth, daughter of Shakespeare, Flaubert and child rejected by Stalin’s Denunciation of the violence, of the status of women, the brutality of the police, the opera house was placed on the index during thirty years in the USSR. Bernd Ulig/Opera Paris

No other Russian opera does a load tragic equal to the one created by Dmitiri Shostakovich in 1934. The booklet, signed Alexander Preis, following a simple framework, but how is infamous: the story of the life of a woman who went so far as to kill in order to live his dreams of pleasure and power. But if it was only that… themes of the adjacent graft and overlap. From the first note, Shostakovich immerses us in the boredom of Katerina Ismaïlova. But Mzensk, it is far from the spleen tchékovien. Rather, in the fields of cabbage in the orchards normans of the Bovary.

Other lines of force: the denunciation of the violence, the denunciation of the brutality of the police and the denunciation of the condition of women. Criticism all the more striking that if the murderer of Shakespeare is the wife of the king of Scotland, that of Shostakovich is the wife of a petit bourgeois to a time, carefully located before 1917. The composer himself wrote: “This opera has been designed as a tragedy. I will say that Lady Macbeth can be described as an opera tragico-satirical.”

Despite the success of his work to his creation, Dmitri Shostakovich was accused of formalism bourgeois and “pornophonie”. Lebrecht/©Lebrecht/Rue des Archives

This definition, be perceived as an admission by the all-powerful gurus of the Union of composers just created by Stalin, was at the origin of one of the most severe algarades between the Kremlin and the composer, who was only 26 years old. They will be more numerous and soon to be more severe when Zhdanov, in turn, tell the good and the bad. But it is then that is the episode that failed to kill the work.

Lady Macbeth of the district Mtsensk, , premiered simultaneously in Leningrad and Moscow with great success, had already been given more than a hundred times, when Stalin, alerted on the content, which is given to him as a little consistent, wants to judge for himself. How the vice can he lead a woman of the people, by definition healthy, up until the murder? At the end of December, he went to the Bolshoi theatre of Moscow, where we give Lady Macbeth of Mzensk, and leaves the theatre at the intermission. A few days later, the axe falls in the form of an article in Pravda entitled “The chaos replaces the music”. It criticizes the formalism of bourgeois decadence and “pornophonie” of the opera, struck the prohibition for a period of thirty years.

during His life, the face of the power, in Shostakovich will be the reed of the fable, folding if necessary to straighten the head as soon as possible. He accepted the withdrawal of Lady Macbeth of Mzensk and, as stated, will, thirty years later, in 1963, Katerina Ismaïlova, a compatible version of the opera in question, where the crime was turned into a punishment, and whose score was slimmed down a few rough edges. Irony of the calendar, in the same year, the de-stalinization initiated by Khrushchev was running and the ban fell. Katerina Ismailova became a musical curiosity. Lady Macbeth of Mzensk began its race to success. One regret, however. After The Nose (1930) and Lady Macbeth Shostakovich never composed more operas. Originally, her project was one of a trilogy on the situation of the woman at different times in the history of Russia.

Ausriné Stundyté, doll of wax glowing Ausriné Stundyté had captivated last summer at Aix in its interpretation of Renata in “Angel of fire” by Prokofiev. Elena Bauer/Paris Opera

For a soprano, Katerina is one of the most beautiful roles of the repertoire. One of the most overwhelming also. By the time spent on scene, the power and the endurance it requires, the difficulties to be overcome, and the incarnation is necessary for all facets of the character, successively, voluptuous, cruel, greedy, brutal, and, a few times, if pure. To interpret, the presence on stage takes on as much importance as the song itself. The role is far from easy to distribute.

In France, the name of Ausriné Stundyté is not familiar. Or, not yet. It is that of a young soprano who is Lithuanian and reached the full extent of its means. His voice is powerful and broad, stable, colorful, a projection inexhaustible. His repertoire is explicit: Salome, Chrysothemis (Elektra), Venus (Tannhäuser), roles that she has sung mainly in Germany and Belgium. Last July, the greatest success of the festival of Aix-en-Provence has been Angel of fire of Prokofiev, where she was Renata, so close, psychologically, and musically by Katerina Ismaïlova. More captivating still, Ausriné Stundyté sings with his body. The commitment of the interpreter is total. She showed in 2014, in Antwerp, in a first Lady Macbeth edited by Calixto Bieito, then in the one created at the Opéra de Lyon in 2016, directed by Dmitri Tcherniakov. Each time, she was stunned by the power of his incarnation. The kindling is expected to meet with Krzystof Warlikowski, for its first stage in paris.

Krzystof Warlikowski, the stage of the body and screams After “Iphigénie en Tauride”, “The Makropoulos Case”, “” Parsifal ” or “Don Carlos”, Krzystof Warlikowski returns to the Paris Opera, always with his direction of the actors down to the millimeter. Elena Bauer/Opera Paris

The director’s Polish is more familiar with the parisian public for which it has signed several productions. The first of them is memorable. It was for Iphigénie en Tauride of Gluck, in 2006. The audience of the salle Garnier was stunned as soon as the raise the curtain who was discovered inside of a retirement home (for women), in its most prosaic. And, in particular, because they are now a part of the public, emblematic of Warlikowski, two rows of sinks with white enamel. The broncas, in the proper sense of the overwhelming, fixed for eternity in the history of the national Opera. But we know that these cabals or these sham trials are not worth what they are worth. In fact, the recovery of the same production, still Garnier, ten years later. From the first, a few holdouts tried to interrupt the representation of boos. The rest of the room silenced, and, in the end, there was applause.

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it is intended just as often, or that he wanders sometimes, it is necessary to follow Warlikowski off the beaten track. After a Makropoulos Case is brilliant, and his Parsifal post-apocalyptic to the Bastille had baffled and disappointed. In the same room, its Don Carlos introspective, leaded by one direction ice had cooled down a public waiting for a fireworks show promised by a display of luxury (Jonas Kaufmann, Sonya Yoncheva, Ludovic Tézier, Elina Garanca, etc.). In contrast, it is necessary to experience his talent when he composed a show, bringing together bluebeard’s Castle of Bartók and The human Voice of Poulenc, presented in continuity, without interruption or intermission, of course, chained by a find masterful. At the théâtre des Champs-Elysées, its scary Medea of Cherubini, that intruders had managed to interrupt a few moments, ending, once again, to cheers.

Lady Macbeth of Mzensk is an opera in four acts and nine tableaux. Many tables are common in the Russian opera, visual and theatrical. Warlikowski does not satisfy, probably not a literal reading of the house, the cellar, the prison and the police station. It will also need to follow his direction of actors, always down to the millimeter. All the more carefully that Paris has a revenge to Lady Macbeth of Mzensk , which it received much later than all the other major scenes, and only twice, in 1992 and 2009.

Lady Macbeth of Mzensk, Dmitri Shostakovich, based on a libretto by Alexander Preis. Ingo Metzmacher (musical director), Krzysztof Warlikowski (staging), Małgorzata Szczęśniak (sets and costumes), with Aušrinė Stundytė, Dmitry Ulyanov, John Daszak, Pavel Černoch, Sofija Petrovic… Opera-Bastille, 6 and 25 April. Before-first on April 2, reserved for the young audience (under 28 years), the single rate of 10€. “Lady Macbeth of Mzensk” will be broadcast live on the 16th of April in nearly 100 cinemas in France and in the world.