On Wednesday 16th July the Mariinsky Theatre’s
new production of Prokofiev’s War and Peace
will be broadcast live* to cinemas across the UK and Ireland from the Mariinsky’s new theatre, Mariinsky II, which opened in 2013. The production is directed by Graham Vick, and is being broadcast live from the annual Stars of the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg, conducted by Artistic Director, Valery Gergiev. This will be the first opera to be broadcast live to cinemas from Mariinsky II, and the first ever live opera cinema screening to the UK from either of the Mariinsky stages.
Sponsored by BP and Rosneft, the production stars the exciting young Ukrainian baritone Andrei Bondarenko (winner of BBC Cardiff Singer of the World – Song Prize 2011) as Prince Andrei, and the young Russian soprano Aida Garifullina (winner of Operalia 2013) as Natasha.
Based on Tolstoy’s epic novel, War and Peace is Prokofiev’s most ambitious work, and is a huge challenge for opera companies with its lengthy series of dramatic scenes, plus the large-scale cast and chorus. Graham Vick first staged War and Peace for the Mariinsky Theatre (or Kirov Theatre as it was then) in 1991 to mark the centenary of Prokofiev’s birth. Twenty-three years later, after the world has seen extraordinary political and social change, he is returning to the work with a fresh take on this modern opera – a 20th century work re-interpreted with a 21st century viewpoint. The opera explores the preoccupations and concerns of the individual in a universal context.
Conceived as theatrically fast-moving and on a grand scale, it is fitting that it will be performed on the equally spectacular and state-of-the-art Mariinsky II stage.
The live broadcast of War and Peace is part of the Mariinsky On Screen cinema season distributed by London-based event cinema distributor More2Screen in partnership with the French production company Telmondis. There will be a live broadcast of the Mariinsky Ballet’s La Bayadère from the Mariinsky Theatre on 14 July 2014.
* With a short time delay from St. Petersburg
Andrei: Andrei Bondarenko
Natasha: Aida Garifullina
Conductor: Valery Gergiev
Music: Sergei Prokofiev
Director: Graham Vick