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A Modern Idyll

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phantasmagoria in 11 acts with a prologue, intermission and afterword. Based on the eponymous novel. 2015 – Year of Literature in Russia Opus № 50, running time: 3 h 10 m, prime February 19, 2015
Ticket price range 100—2500 rub.
  • Author — Mikhail Saltykov-Shchedrin
  • Director and Text Adaptation — Yevgeny Kamenkovich
  • Stage Design — Maria Mitrofanova
  • Costume Design — Yevgenia Panfilova
  • Lighting Design — Vladislav Frolov
  • Musical Setting — Sergei Zverev
  • Dance Coach — Ramune Khodorkaite
  • Editor — Maria Kozyar
  • Stage Manager — Olga Lopach
Upcoming Performances

September, 20, 19:00

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October, 11, 19:00

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“Sleep! God does not sleep for you!” – Vasily Zhukovsky.


This play investigates the phenomenon of the birth of Fear, how it arises from a stray word, an unspecified gesture of the hand – “he walked along, gestured with his hand like this, and didn’t say a thing.” Characters nurse their fears, developing and “feeding” them. They are capable of committing the most shameful and terrible acts because of Fear and Shame, which have the ability to suddenly blind one's eyes. Driven by the panic of being disgraced – they will dive to the bottoms of rotting, fetid swamps. Purifying their heads and homes to a cold, orphan-like vacuity, they will squint their eyes and dive into the deepest, darkest absurd – into the stagnant waters of sycophancy. But after they reach the bottom, they will push off and rise up again. They will dissolve in a frosty fog. They and their Shame, hand in hand, will escape – by rail, by steamship, on foot, any way they can go, they’ll head for their own deepest, inner Mongolia, in some Godforsaken village, at the end of the world. These “bottom-dwelling fish” are small and insignificant enough to slip through holes in old fishing nets. “I’m afraid to die and I don’t want to die; I’ll be a wood-boring bug in the back leg of a chair, in the furthest room, so that these waves will pass me by,” wrote Dmitry Ozyorsky. This production features many of Ozyorsky’s lyrics set to music by Leonid Fyodorov of the band Auktsyon. These texts written in the late 20th/early 21st century are consonant with the Russian literary underground of the 1920s and the atmosphere of Saltykov-Shchedrin’s work. “I’m afraid to die and I don’t want to die; but I don’t mind repainting my skin in order to fit in.”
This is a surprising premiere at the Fomenko Workshop. Artistic Director Evgeny Kamenkovich, who traditionally bet on thick classical volumes and the search for the answers to eternal questions (just think about his Ulysses or Nabokov’s The Gift), had suddenly presented the audience with the latest news commentary. This production is fully devoid of prettiness and any lyricism, but it’s full of contemporary references and caustic language. This is the most unromantic production we’ve seen here yet.
Natalya Vitvitskaya, Vash dosug

Characters and Cast

  • Cast for
  • all
  • September 20
  • October 11

And a few more: The Pea Coat and Shame. The action takes place in St. Petersburg in the second half of the XIX century.