By Ivan Varbanov
In the conditions of crisis, pandemic, economic stagnation and political tremors culture is and will be a phenomenon.
Because who, if not the people of spirit, the ones of art are called upon to pass beyond the limit of realities?
The cultural vanguard is а carrier of causes, because of the freedom of the spirit, the transport to raise high, to draw its dimensions, which don’t fit and don’t overlay with the hardships of their time.
And at that in the epoch of digital revolution, which also points to us that there cannot be and there are no limits.
With certitude, culture is and will be a lighthouse of the new direction of social development.
An example of boldness, of devotion, of a leap and vision about the future day.
Now it is so too, when we look for all kind of new ways, reforms, change, renewal, when we want to build up a new world, to create new life, new matrixes and formulae.
The team of the Sofia Opera and Ballet didn’t stop wanting, didn’t stop looking for them persistently, in order not to stop its development, its activity. The theatre didn’t stop and didn’t submit itself to the curse of time, the obstacles, the barriers and the trials.
After "Opera in the Park", the spectacles on the Lake Pancharevo and in the Boyana Cinema Center, after the Belogradchik Rocks and the Portal of the Spirit at Tsari Mali Grad, which starts today – 29.08.2020, after the streams in the Internet and the TV broadcasts over the airwaves of the Bulgarian National Television, now for everybody it is interesting what will be the new season of Bulgaria’s first opera theatre?
And the answers we logically search in the outlines of projects, which were already given a hint that they will happen or are upcoming.
THE CURTAIN WILL RAISE, IN ORDER NOT TO STOP THE CONTACT WITH LIVE ART
With greatest impatience the music lovers will expect the opera “Elektra” by Richard Strauss. Among the famous performers during the years was also Ljuba Welitsch, and later Margarita Lilova too. The premiere was planned for the end of May this year, so that we shall expect with impatience the realization of this project, which will present the title for the first time on Bulgarian stage. For the role of Elektra is invited Catherine Foster, a master of Wagner’s and Strauss’s repertoire. "Elektra" by Strauss is a continuation of the programme Wagner line, a new pearl in the crown of masterpieces, which has in its repertoire the Sofia Opera, which proved that it disposes over the necessary resource of artists able to cover the diversity of most prestigious and hard titles for the opera companies around the world.
The audience will wait also for the ballet "One Hundred and One Nights" by Fikret Amirov. The choreography will be deed of the world-known pedagogue and ballet dancer Eldar Aliev, who created the grandiose success of “Le corsaire” with the company of the National Ballet and was applauded enthusiastically by the Russian audience. The sets and the costumes for "One Hundred and One Nights" are ready, it remains only to be fixed the premiere date.
The opera “Queen of Spades” also comes along, under the directing of Vera Petrova and with guest designer from the Bolshoi Theatre in Belarus. Let’s remind that the title was presented in a concert performance in the end of January this year under the baton of Constantin Trinks. We shall expect the performance of one of the most emblematic operas by the Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky with bated breath.
Intended is also the premiere of a new Bulgarian opera for the repertoire of the Sofia Opera – a part of the tradition every new season to be presented a national music and stage work.
A logical accent is also the next edition of the Wagner festival, which traditionally gathers international audience from all parts of the world and is among the most prestigious projects of our national opera company, an event, which received brilliant esteems and recognition by the specialists and by the International Association of Wagner Societies. The banner of the organization, which was handed out, is a symbol of the highest respect for the quality of the created Bulgarian spectacles.
Among the revived titles is expected to be "Il barbiere di Siviglia" by Rossini, a production by Nina Naydenova.
It’s obvious that an ambitious and strong season comes along.
And, I am sure, new peaks for the company of the Sofia Opera and Ballet.
Good luck, colleagues!