1. A house on the edge of a field. An Old Man is at home. Gavrilo and
Danilo are at home. Ivan the Fool is at home. It is crowded in the house.
The Old Man goes out to cut the rye wheat. Gavrilo and Danilo are glad.
Gavrilo and Danilo make merry. Gavrilo and Danilo arrange an outdoor
party. Gavrilo and Danilo dance with the Wet-Nurses. The Old Man returns
from the field. The Old Man drives the Wet-Nurses away.
The Old Man tells his sons of a terrible villain. This villain comes at night.
The villain cannot be seen by anyone. The villain tramples on and ruins the
wheat. The villain must be caught and destroyed. The Old Man himself is weak
and infirm. The Old Man sends his sons out to guard the field.
Gavrilo and Danilo set out on patrol. They don’t take Ivan. They think
Ivan is too young. They think Ivan is clumsy. They think Ivan is a fool. Ivan
asks to go to the field with his brothers. Ivan also wants to catch the villain.
Ivan knows that he can confront the villain. Ivan is afraid of nothing. Ivan
sets out into the field alone.
2. It is night. Ivan is guarding the field. A Young Mare trots into the field.
The Young Mare is beautiful. The Young Mare is wild. The Young Mare
tramples and ruins the wheat. The Young Mare enjoys itself. Ivan grabs the
Young Mare by the tail. Ivan climbs onto the Young Mare. Ivan is dexterous.
Ivan sits on the Young Mare back to front. Ivan finds this amusing. The Young
Mare is embittered. The Young Mare attempts to throw off Ivan. But to no
avail! The Young Mare makes Ivan a gift of some Horses and a Humpbacked
Horse. If only Ivan will free her! The Horses are indeed beautiful. The Horses
are large and powerful. The Humpbacked Horse is little. The Humpbacked
Horse is weak. The Humpbacked Horse is most peculiar. What can he do?
The Firebirds land in the field. The Firebirds dance. The Firebirds play.
The Firebirds fly past. The Firebirds are free. Ivan runs after the Firebirds.
Gavrilo and Danilo arrive in the field. Gavrilo and Danilo notice the
Horses. The brothers like the Horses. Gavrilo and Danilo abduct the Horses.
Gavrilo and Danilo are cunning.
Ivan returns with a feather from the Firebird. Ivan likes the feather. Ivan
is easy and relaxed. Ivan notices the Horses have disappeared. Ivan is upset.
Ivan cries bitterly. The Humpbacked Horse comforts Ivan. The Humpbacked
Horse proposes that Ivan pursues the abductors. The Humpbacked Horse
promises to help Ivan. The Humpbacked Horse can, in fact, do a great deal.
3. A square in the Capital City. The people are on the square. The people
are enjoying themselves. The people perform a round dance. The people
dance a quadrille. Gavrilo and Danilo are on the square. Gavrilo and Danilo
plan to sell the Horses. Gavrilo and Danilo want money.
The Tsar enters the square. The Tsar loves to walk amongst his people. The
people love to see their Tsar. The Tsar loves to look all around. The Tsar sees
the Horses. The Tsar likes the Horses. The Tsar is ready to buy them.
Ivan and the Humpbacked Horse rush onto the square. Ivan recognises
the Horses. Ivan recognises his brothers. Ivan upbraids his brothers. Ivan
takes the Horses from his brothers. They are his Horses. The Tsar has become
attached to the Horses. The Tsar bargains for the Horses with Ivan. Ivan is
prepared to let the Horses go. The question of price remains. The Tsar takes
off the Gentleman of the Bedchamber’s hat: there is a wonderful price. Ivan
is delighted with the hat. The hat really suits Ivan. The Guardsman is furious
4. In the royal chambers. The Tsar’s rooms. The Wet-Nurses are feeding the
Tsar. The Tsar is eating. The Tsar is sate and falls asleep. At the entrance to the
room, Ivan lies down to sleep. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber observes
Ivan. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber steals the Firebird’s feather from
Ivan. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber sneaks into the Tsar’s chambers. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber wakens the Tsar and shows him the feather.
Where has Ivan acquired riches such as this?
The Tsar loves the feather. The Tsar has a vision. The Tsar sees the Firebirds.
The Tsar sees the Tsar Maiden. The vision fades. But the Tsar is already in love
with the Tsar Maiden. The Tsar needs the Tsar Maiden. That is an order! The Gentleman of the Bedchamber wakens Ivan and gives him the Tsar’s order.
Ivan is in despair. Ivan doesn’t know where to seek out the Tsar Maiden.
The Little Horse comforts Ivan. The Little Horse knows what to do. Ivan and
the Little Horse depart for the Tsar Maiden.
5. The Firebirds live on the edge of the world. Among them is the Tsar
Maiden. Ivan and the Horse have come to the edge of the world. To the Tsar Maiden and to the Firebirds… Ivan wants to capture the Firebirds. The Firebirds fly away. Ivan sees the Tsar Maiden and cannot take his eyes off her.
A miracle, what a beauty! The Tsar Maiden allows Ivan to catch her. She allows
herself to be carried to the Capital City. The Tsar Maiden likes Ivan. Oh, well!
6. The Tsar and the Boyars are in the royal chambers. They are waiting for the Tsar Maiden. The Tsar is anxious. He is like a cat on hot bricks. The Tsar
falls asleep. The Boyars, devoted servants, fall asleep too. One of the Boyars is
still awake. He sees Ivan returning with the Little Horse and the Tsar Maiden.
The Boyar wakens the Tsar. The Tsar wakes up and sends everyone away.
The Tsar declares to the Tsar Maiden that he plans to marry her. Ivan is
distressed. Ivan loves the Tsar Maiden. The Boyars bring the engagement
ring. The Tsar Maiden agrees to marry, but the ring is not right. For the
wedding the Tsar Maiden needs a stone that lies on the seabed. The Tsar is
confounded. How can he get the stone? The Gentleman of the Bedchamber
is at his side. How about Ivan? The Gentleman of the Bedchamber sends Ivan
to the seabed. Ivan is grieved. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber is pleased.
He awaits Ivan’s death.
7. The seabed. There, the Sea People are living their marine lives. Ivan and
the Little Horse reach the seabed. Ivan looks for the ring. The ring is nowhere
to be found, nowhere! What he can do he does not know! No! Ivan then asks
for help from the Princess of the Sea. The Princess of the Sea will help Ivan,
yes! The Sea People bring the ring to Ivan, oh yes!
8. A square in the Capital City. The Tsar Maiden is invited to dance by
the Tsar. The Tsar and Tsar Maiden dance. The Tsar tires quickly. The Tsar
is old. Ivan appears with his Little Horse and the stone. The Tsar Maiden is
pleased that Ivan is unharmed. The Gentleman of the Bedchamber is angry.
The Gentleman of the Bedchamber takes the ring from Ivan. The Gentleman
of the Bedchamber drives Ivan away. Ivan is not required any longer.
The Tsar is ready to marry. But the Tsar Maiden is not. She does not fancy
the Tsar for a husband. For a husband she needs a man as handsome as a picture. If the Tsar wishes to marry, then he must become such a fine fellow.
But how? He must jump into a cauldron of boiling water, that’s how!
The cauldron is brought in. The Tsar is in terror. How can he jump into
boiling water? The Gentleman of the Bedchamber proposes the cauldron
be tried out using Ivan. Ivan is pushed into the cauldron. The faithful Little
Horse works a spell. Ivan is transformed into a handsome fellow indeed.
Ivan becomes a Tsarevich. The people rejoice. The people are anxious. They
all want to be young and beautiful; they all want to be tsars and tsarevnas.
The Tsar orders all be kept back from the cauldron. The Tsar himself is
immersed in boiling water. The Tsar perishes. The people mourn. The people
bury the Tsar. The people find life hard without a Tsar. The people need a Tsar.
Ivan Tsarevich and the Tsar Maiden are delighted. Preparations for the
wedding are made. Then the people too are happy. The people will have their
new Tsar. Handsome and young…