2023 Author: Leah Sherlock | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-08-25 09:26
The legendary rock opera will turn 37 this year, during which time more than 1,500 thousand performances have been given. Almost always full house. Despite the fact that several generations of performers have changed, the performance still excites the audience. Reviews of "Juno and Avos" were always only enthusiastic, starting from the era of stagnation, continuing into perestroika and preserved to this day.
The plot of the poem and rock opera is based on a real story that happened to the Russian statesman and traveler Nikolai Petrovich Rezanov (1764-1807). A 43-year-old Russian nobleman fell in love with sixteen-year-old Conchita Argüello, the daughter of the Spanish commandant of San Francisco.
According to the memoirs of the author of the poem, Andrei Voznesensky, he began writing "Maybe" in Vancouver, Canada, when he read J. Lensen's work about Rezanov. The author wrote very flatteringly about the brave traveler. Alsofor writing, the travel diary of Nikolai Petrovich was used, which was partially preserved and was published.
But neither a poem nor a musical performance is not a documentary chronicle, as the famous poet said in one of his interviews. In reviews of Juno and Avos, the audience wrote that they could make a big performance out of a small play.
The story of a Russian traveler
Nikolai Rezanov was one of the leaders of the Russian expedition that sailed to California to buy food for the Russian colony in Alaska. The elderly nobleman fell in love with the sixteen-year-old Conchita Argüello and they got engaged. As a Russian nobleman, it was necessary for him to return to the imperial court in order to obtain permission to marry a Catholic woman, but before that he had to visit Alaska. While returning home, the groom fell seriously ill and died in Krasnoyarsk. The bride for a long time did not want to believe in the death of her lover, information about which sometimes reached her. According to reviews of "Juno and Avos", the audience really liked this romantic story, which was immortalized in a poem and a rock opera.
Conchita believed in Rezanov's death only in 1842, when George Simpson, an English traveler, told the story of his death. She has been waiting for a groom for thirty-five years. A few years later, the Spaniard took the veil as a nun and died in 1857.
Creating a rock opera
In 1978, the young composer AlexeiRybnikov presented Mark Zakharov with musical improvisations on the themes of Orthodox chants. The director really liked the music, he decided to create a performance based on it based on the plot of "The Tale of Igor's Campaign" and offered to write a libretto to the popular poet Andrei Voznesensky. However, he did not support the idea, offering his poem "Perhaps". Zakharov agreed, setting the condition that he would determine the composer himself. The poet later wrote in reviews of "Juno and Avos", Rybnikov - it was a happy choice.
For the libretto of the performance, many scenes and arias had to be added. Therefore, in reviews of "Juno and Avos", the audience, who read the poem first, noted that the rock opera made a stronger impression on them. The choreographer was Vladimir Vasiliev, who got into the play almost by accident. Karachentsev once came to him, complaining that everything was going in cycles with them and they did not know what to do next. The choreographer suggests weaving dances into the fabric of the entire performance.
The premiere of the rock opera took place on July 9, 1981 on the stage of the famous Moscow theater named after Lenin Komsomol. Famous Soviet actors Nikolai Karachentsov (Count Rezanov), Alexander Abdulov (Fernando) were involved in the main male roles. In the main female role, Rezanov's lover is Elena Shanina (Conchita). Karachentsev played the Russian nobleman until the accident (car accident). The actor had to take vocal lessons from the musician Pavel Smeyan, who played the Chiefwriter. He also pulled out high notes when Rezanov could not cope with them.
According to the memoirs of Rybnikov, the author of the music, reviews of "Juno and Avos" by the Lenkom Theater were published in the Western press just a few days later. Where journalists rated the performance as anti-Soviet. Because of this, the production was not released abroad for a long time, the release of the record with the rock opera and the payment of the fee were delayed. A television version was released in 1983. In the same year, a triumphant tour organized by the famous French designer Pierre Cardin took place. The rock opera was shown in Paris on the Champs Elysees, in New York on Broadway. In subsequent years - in Germany, the Netherlands and many other countries.
This year the performance turned 37 years old, all these years it has been going on with the same full house in Lenkom. The dream of every aspiring theater actor is to get the role of one of the thirteen sailors. The popular actor Dmitry Pevtsov played a sailor on a ship in "Avos" for almost ten years. Since 2005 "became a captain". Alla Yuganova plays his favorite, and Viktor Rakov plays Fernando's eternal rival.
On the playbill for the play, the sub title reads: "Modern opera in two parts". Since in the reviews of "Juno and Avos" by Lenkom, viewers note that the story has not lost its relevance. Although many of them write that there is no Rezanov for them, except in the performance of Karachentsev, and Fernando is only Abdulov. The performance actually traveled all over the world, costumes have long been for conveniencenot taken out of boxes.
What do the authors and the audience say about the performance now?
Mark Zakharov says that the performance brought a lot of joyful emotions that helped the troupe to live. Voznesensky managed to write an excellent poem, and Rybnikov - wonderful music, which became an alloy of Russian romance, Orthodox chants and rock culture. The choreographer of the performance, Vladimir Vasiliev, is sure that the story of Rezanov and Conchita will be new as long as the next generations bring their own aesthetics and features of the new time. And for a long time no one is surprised when, in the finale, the audience starts to sing along to their favorite characters.
In reviews of the opera "Juno and Avos" you can find a variety of opinions: some like Karachentsev in the role of Rezanov in his younger years, others believe that in adulthood he began to better understand his character. Some are generally more attracted to Pevtsov's performance.
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