In these »lyrical scenes in three acts«, premiered in 1879 by a student ensemble at Moscow’s Maly (i.e. Small) Theatre, Tchaikovsky chose not to use the »grand styled« theatre that was largely mandatory for opera performances during this time period: »I do not need tsars, tsarinas, uprisings, battles, marches… I am looking for an intimate but powerful drama based on the conflicts that I myself have experienced or seen, those which touched me deeply.« The composer found such insight in Alexander Pushkin’s intimate drama and novel in verse, »Eugene Onegin« (1833), which has gone down in cultural history as the »Encyclopedia of Russian Life«. In it Pushkin masterfully describes the life of contemporary society of the time and all its diversity. With his eponymous hero, he created for the first time what would later be called a »superfluous man«, a recurring archetype of Russian literature.

06 Nov


Vienna State Opera
6 November 2020
Starting Hour